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Top Fishing Kayaks of 2017.

Kayaks / February 13, 2017

Are you searching for the fastest growing way to fish? Fishing Kayaks have become the way to get into the smallest areas, or patrol the large areas in a simple way. As fishing kayaks become more popular, check out our list of the Top Fishing Kayaks of 2017.

Fishing Kayaks have exploded in the past few years and its easy to see why. Many kayaks are cheaper and easier to transport than a boat. They’re more maneuverable on most rivers and streams than large boats. The inability to mount large engine on a kayak means they will never reach the types of speeds of a boat but with the invention of certain pedal drives, kayaks are much faster than they used to be.

Kayaks have the added benefit of evading state registration taxes too. Many states require the registration and payment of tax on fishing boats. Not all states require the registration of fishing kayaks though. Some kayaks, with specific car mounts, can be single handly hefted onto the top of a vehicle making simple viable options for a solitary day on the water.

Tackle Reports has listed a number of kayaks worthy of consideration. Some are expensive. Some are cheap. But all are quality kayaks for your fishing experience.

Top Fishing Kayaks of 2017


 

Sun Dolphin Journey 10-Foot Sit-on-top Fishing Kayak

 The Sun Dolphin Journey is one of the most common kayaks, let along fishing kayaks. The Sun Dolphin is cheap, simple, leightweight, and easy to transport. If you’re looking to get into kayak fishing. This is a great one to start with.

Its great for small lakes and rivers and to get to those excluded fishing spots. It tracks well and paddles with ease while offering as much stability as possible for a 10-foot kayak. Don’t expect to stand up and fish in the Sun Dolphin. It wasn’t designed to be a stand and cast. Its made of rugged UV-stabilized Fortiflex High Density Polyethylene.

Some of the key features of this kayak are:

  • P.A.C. (Portable Accessory Carrier) can be used as a tow behind or extra storage compartment
  • 2 flush mount and 1 swivel fishing rod holders
  • Large, comfortable seating area with protective thigh pads
  • Adjustable foot braces
  • Storage and shock cord deck rigging
  • Retractable carrying handles
  • Adjustable foot braces
  • Sun Dolphin fishing kayak comes with one paddle

This is a good beginners kayak. If you haven’t tried a serious fishing kayak or are just looking to paddle around on the water. This is a good choice for you.

 


Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 Angler Sit-On-Top Fishing Kayak

 

 

The Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 Angler Sit-On-Top Fishing Kayak is one of the most popular kayaks designed for fishing. The  Prowler is 13-feet long capable of holding up to 450 lbs.

This ocean kayak is not meant for standing but is still extremely stable. Some customers report how well the kayak handles choppy water during 25-30 mph wind gusts with little issue. This is a fast kayak and tracks well.

The only downsides of this kayak are in placement issues. Awkward design placement are the only things holding this kayak back. Scupper holes and fishing rod holders, for example, are oddly placed.

Its reasonably weighted, not too heavy though not super light. Despite the odd design, this kayak is a good choice for the single angler looking to strike out on their own and all at a reasonable price.

 


Colorado XT

 

 

The first thing you’ll notice about the Colorado XT is, it’s not a fishing kayak. It is an inflatable pontoon.

Inflatable pontoon boats are meant for pond and lake fishing. They aren’t meant for the open waters of large bodies of water but they’re generally more transportable than fishing kayaks. They are easier to handle for beginners, and they make fantastic platforms for fly fishermen.

The ability to sit up high on two pontoon floats make it easier to see fish and cast. Its easier to handle a fly rod on a pontoon boat given how high up the fly fisherman sits. This pontoon raft even has a motor mount in case you just had to move at the speed of light on a lake.

These pontoon boat has tons of pockets for gear and accessories.

There are multiple ways to maneuver with this pontoon boat. You can use oars, which come with the product. You can pull on your waiters and use scuba diving fins to kick yourself around. If you’re feeling a little more handy, some anglers have managed to attach trolling motors to the back of pontoon floats as propulsion.


Old Town Vapor 10 Angler Fishing Kayak

 

Old Town kayaks are one of the big names in kayak fishing. The Old Town Vapor 10 Angler Fishing Kayak is one of smaller options for fishing kayaks. Unlike most of our other kayaks, this is a sit-in kayak.

Its smaller, though 10 feet isn’t all that small, than most other kayaks which allows it greater maneuverability in streams and creeks not possible with the big 14-foot open water fishing kayaks.

It has a roomy cockpit and adjustable padded seat and thigh pads. Skid plate, day-well storage, and carry handles are all included on this kayak. There are two fishing rod holders position right behind the cockpit, making access to different rods simple.

This is one of the more price friendly kayaks.

Though don’t think because this is a cheap fishing kayak, that its low quality. Nothing could be further from the truth. This is a quality kayak for beginners and anglers on a budget. Make sure to purchase your own paddle when ordering this Old Town Fishing Kayak, as it doesn’t come with one.

 


Vibe Skipjack

 

Vibe Kayaks are amongst the highest quality kayaks and the Skipjack 90 is no different. The Vibe Skipjack is another of our kayaks meant for the angler on a budget or an angler working on small bodies of water.

The Skipjack is only 9 feet long and just under 3 feet wide. This is not the kayak for large fishers. This is a kayak for small anglers. For a small kayak, the skipjack has 4 rod holders with plugs for each one when you’re not using them. There are 2 sealed hatches for you to store anything you please from electronics to tackle and a bungeed storage system perfect for your kayak fishing crate in the rear.

 


FeelFree Lure Seris

FeelFree is one of the best names in kayaks. They are taking kayak fishing to a new level in stability, comfort and versatility with the new 2015 Lure series. The Lure series is designed for longer paddling trips on rivers, lakes and oceans with more capacity and additional deck space.

The kayak also comes with a variety of unique features seen on Lure series kayaks including a removable multi-level extra wide Patent Pending Gravity Seat, Feelfree’s patented wheel in the keel and Uni-Track system. The Gravity Seat offers a wide range of seat heights, which is adjusted with the simple function of a lever and is removable. What really sets the Gravity Seat apart is the ability to sit flush on the deck of the kayak when additional stability and a more efficient paddling position is needed for longer distances. Another key feature designed specifically for the Lure series is a removable sonar & electronic pod. The pod makes it easy to install of a fish finder and transducer without having to drill any holes into the kayak.

The Lure’s super-stable 36” wide hull paired with a padded standing platform gives you the option to paddle or cast in either the sitting or standing position whether fishing inland waters or wide open oceans — this kayak fears no water.

Hobie Mirage Compass Kayak

Hobie. There is no name in kayak fishing which creates more envy and desire than Hobie. Hobie kayaks are some of the fastest kayaks in the business thanks to their one of a kind mirage drive. The mirage drive is a pedal drive which uses two unique fins to propel the kayak forward in a smooth and powerful motion.

The Hobie Compass is a new addition to the Hobie Fleet. The compass combines the best of the Outback and Pro Angler for about half the cost.

Quiet, lightweight, stable, and fast, the Compass matches the stand-up capabilities of bulkier boats, but is far more athletic. At first glance, The you can see the compass has sharp entry, low gunwales and angular lines. It helps disguise a 34-inch width. The kayak itself weights around 70 pounds. That’s heavier than some kayaks but not as heavy as the Pro-Angler, a fair trade given its 400 pound float capacity.

The compass lets go of the classic internal hull storage present on the outback or the pro-angler in favor of an open bow and mesh coverings to hold down the new 26-inch soft cooler. This is much more accessible than a fish bag stashed inside the hull when bouncing around offshore.

The only issue, is that the innovation and quality are clearly reflected in the price tag.  These are expensive, but the quality and features are well worth the price for a lasting kayak.

 


Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14

 

The Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14 is the Ferrari is fishing kayaks. The Pro Angler 14 deserves its own notice, apart from the compass.

The Pro angler 14 is powered by the mirage drive like other Hobie kayaks. It comes standard with 6 large tubes for rod storage and an easy access hatch in the front for tackle. The elevating seat system has been integrated into the new model for better vantage point to sight fish. The new H-Rail mounting system is great for any additional accessories, fish finders, rod holders, or rudder systems you would ever be interested in installing. With the capability of holding 600 pounds, the possibility of a live well, there is no better possible fishing kayak.

The price tags on the Hobie is the only drawback and it can be a big one. They’re expensive kayaks. Though, once you incorporate the money you would have spent on a fishing boat around the same price, registration fees, taxes, yearly taxes, money for gas and maintenance, the kayak price tag doesn’t seem as steep.

 


Final Thoughts

With new tournaments and fishing clubs popping up every day all over the country, kayak fishing is a unique and booming fishing community interested in the best fishing has to offer.

While the Pro-Angler was out favorite last year, the new Hobie Compass has taken its place. The combination of the best elements of the outback and Pro-Angler are great but the real gem is the price. At $1900, the Compass is still expensive compared to a Skipjack or a SunDolphin but the Compass comes with the mirage drive and that great Hobie design and quality. Anglers who were previously priced out of a Hobie kayak now have the opportunity to buy one of the best pedal kayaks on the market for a reasonable price!

This is definitely a kayak worth every penny to reach those perfect fishing holes and find quiet time on the water.

Happy fishing!


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Matthew Gallagher




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