Fishing from a WS Riot SOT?

I just purchased a Wilderness Systems Riot SOT.

See for pics. I’ve fished from a canoe for years and now want to fish from this small, 9.5 ft, SOT. I don’t know the first thing about it so I’m looking for basic advice on methods, accessories and gear. For instance, where do folks put their pole when paddling? How do you secure your paddle when fishing so you don’t loose it when things get fun? Are rod-holders a good idea? And anything else you can think of.

TIA for any help.

Keep it simple
If you search around the net, you’ll find sites dedicated to “kayak fishing”. That said, I like to keep things simple. A paddle leash will allow you to drop your paddle in the water to fish. There are also several good onboard paddle stowage clip systems you can add. Likewise the addition of a scotty rod holder is a favorite mod for most fisherman. I often just slide the rid between my legs with the rod tip over my shoulder and troll this way. My main advice is to keep it simple. It’s real easy to clutter and weigh down a yak with gadgets only to take the mobility and fun out of teh basic boat!


Took your advice and after researching various leashes and clips I made my own leashes for the paddle, rod and net. Will take a while to work out what works for me fishing gear wise, but took it out on the pond yesterday and enjoyed it immensely. May invest in better paddle storage later if I feel I need it.


Rod holder, tackle holder
I do catch & release, so I don’t have to worry about getting fish back with me.

The first thing you need is a rod holder. I recommend Scotty or RAM, and recommend against Berkeley.

The next thing you need is a way to hold tackle. If you can put on deck rigging, that’ll do. If the space is too small for deck rigging then put in a padeye and a small bit of line with a clip. Then clip a tackle binder. When I fish out of my smaller kayak, the only things I take are one rod to use, a second pack rod stowed, a small Plano two-sided tackle box with terminal tackle, a small Bass Pro Shops worm binder with some soft plastics, and another small Bass Pro Shops binder with spinnerbaits. The whole thing takes less space than a box of donuts. I often also take a box of donuts.

Now, in an SOT, what I do in the larger one is to use a small day-pack and run a line through the shoulder straps across the boat and under my knees. So my knees are up, and the space between my knees and the deck is available for tackle. That’s where the day-pack goes. A couple padeyes and a line with a 'biner will do what you need. Use locking 'biners to avoid accidental clippage.

Now you’re ready.

You’re on your own for where to put the thermos of coffee and the box of donuts.

  • Big D

SOT rigging
I don’t like to drill holes in boats when I don’t have to, so I’ve never bothered with a paddle holder. I use a paddle leash, and just let the paddle float next to me in the water. Curiously, I have found the movement of the paddle attracts dolphin (mahi-mahi) to my boat.

For stowage, I have a milk crate strapped into the tankwell behind me. I made rod holders by ziptying sections of pvc pipe to the outside of the crate. Inside the crate, I keep a small softside tacklebox, my boga grip, needlenose pliers (tethered), sunscreen, lunch, water and gatorade, flare kit, fish bag, and icepick (for dispatching fish I want to eat - I don’t find a club very useful when fishing from a kayak, etc.