Took the Dirogo out fishing today

-- Last Updated: Jun-29-08 8:09 AM EST --

and it was a disaster. There is no where near enough room for all my crap and it got wind-blown as much as any canoe that I owned and it was all but impossable to re-rig the rod and I couldn't get my beer out of the not-so-dry hatch becuz it was too far behind me and when I DID get a nibble I had no leverage to set the hook and there you go. I want my canoe back.

I’ve none of those problems

– Last Updated: Jun-29-08 12:08 AM EST –

Except the canoe has a bit more room and a bit easier access to the cooler, though not much. For sure, my Loon is a whole lot better in the wind than my canoe and its not bad. I've had no problem setting the hook in 10 lb fish I've caught and had plenty of leverage with a few gar specimens that may have hit the low twenties, but gar are difficult to hook solidly. Typically, they throw the hook, but it doesn't matter whether you are on land, a big boat, or a yak with them. As for the wind, maybe you were trying to fish in too high of a wind, not easy no matter the paddle craft.

BTW, while I do not carry beer when fishing, I typcally have 6 or so cokes, gatorade, and water. My cooler carries my cut bait too, as well as my sandwich and snacks. Its a large Igloo playmate. Generally, I carry 5 rods, a tackle bag, and two anchors. Often, I'll have a fairly large short handled net. My kayak cart is stowed in the stern of the Loon. The Loon has been on river camping trips loaded with at least 75 lbs of gear...mine as well as stuff for my two sons.

If the wind is blowing fairly stiffly, I'll use both anchors fore and aft to hold the kayak in postion. If two anchors won't hold, then its time to move on to sheltered waters or head for home.


– Last Updated: Jun-29-08 8:10 AM EST –

Send me a pic of this set up will you? I'm sure that if I invested some MONEY into the Yak it would fish better but for a few dollars more I can get a good old fashioned canoe and have, well, a canoe! Still, I am merely disheartened and not despondent. Show me, oh wise one, so that I may learn.

Bait and samiches in the same cooler huh? Where do you keep it AND a tackle box. I had to pick: one or the other.

I also imagine that my Suckatude plays a large roll in the boat's sucking.

I hear ya’
I rarely use my Loon anymore as I’m limited in the amount of stuff I can bring. Access to coolers, extra rods, etc. is a pain in the ass. Everything I might need has to be right in the cockpit with me, in reach, so it’s sort of crowded in there. Not a lot of room to move around. The only time my kayak has been wet is when it’s raining. It does do somewhat better in the wind than my canoe, but not enough to make a big difference. Setting the hook was never a problem in either the kayak or the canoe. Getting a bite is a different story.

Coming from some one named Kayakangler

– Last Updated: Jun-29-08 3:22 PM EST –

I don't feel so bad.
You don't even understand. I spent all kinds of time organizing and down-sizing my tackle box until it all fit into a small EMS first-in bag.(about 17x9x11). I rigged two rods (each pre-rigged to serve a different function)and brought a tub of worms a mushroom anchor (same one that I used in the canoe) and my cooler.
I dragged the boat to the water and threw every thing on the floor in front of my seat. Just like the canoe. That didn't work. I rearranged things. I rearranged them again. And again. I gave up. I tucked my coat, the anchor and line and the 5 1/2 foot pole behind my seat.Still a no-go. I put the cooler in the back hatch and readjusted the tackle bag and other rod and I was able to get in the boat! Woot!
Immediately upon launching I smashed into the spare rod with my paddle. I tried to take it out. The reel was caught: there wasn't enough room between my seat back and the cockpit edge to get it out under way. So I took it apart. Better, MUCH better but I still clipped the now useless rod a few times trying to maneuver the boat. Of course, I couldn't get to the anchor either which is OK since there was nothing to tie it off to any way.

I got my worm on the hook and in the water and reached around for a brewski. I HAVE tried opening the hatch from the cockpit before and it can be done, just not with a a line in the water and a few hundred dollars worth of fishing gear onboard. Today it was only a beer. That could have been a first aid kit, a bilge pump, rain gear, food, water, any thing. Point is: the rear hatch is just too risky a place to go when there is a lot of stuff to be lost in the event of a tip over.

I don't know. I guess I just expected it to go better. I sit at work and read all about Kayak fishing this and kayak fishing that and I guess if you can't afford a real boat and want to get out in the ocean to fish then kayaks are OK for fishing since there's no other choice for you. For regular fishing? I guess that I should have learned by now that glamorous and faddy are just that. There is nothing glamorous about utility and a craft that has been used for hundreds if not thousands of years (right here where I live, not in Eskimoland) is not a fad.

To be fair, I like my Kayak for paddling along and sight-seeing. My wife would rather kayak than canoe and for personal paddling when access to thing s underway is not necessary I think that it's faster, easier to maneuver and less influenced by wind and waves than a canoe. I'll give it a second chance as a fishing platform. I might even buy a rod holder or two. I think that I'm going to save up for a nice small canoe though.

It is in the rigging
But mine is pretty inexpensively done. I’ve a couple of coke boxes, the kind used for 6 packs of 20 oz bottles. The sides are about 4" high. One mounts at the front of my cockpit, the other on the stern. The one on the bow carries my cooler and has two PVC rod holders, angled toward the bow. I also have two Scotty rod holders out of range of my paddling.

The box on the back typically will hold a bait bucket, cast net, and other “stuff” I also have a Tite Lok rod holder at the right hand side just behind the cockpit to carry a spare rod.

My tackle bag sits between my legs and my anchors are on each side of the seat. This isn’t the most convenient arrangement, I wish the tackle bag could rest in the same box as my cooler. But, the choice is a cooler that will carry enough for an 8 hour fishing trip or a smaller soft sided cooler.

I was lucky, I found the coke boxes. The front box is secured by a cleat that runs under the cockpit and is bolted down with wing nuts. The rear box is held down by bungee cords hooked in padeyes I installed for that purpose. Had I not found the two boxes…I’ve now found a third that’s taller and bigger…I would have built something similar out of wood, as I did with my little kayak. Some might think my placing tall items on the bow and stern decks would create problems with the wind, but I’ve not noticed that.

Now, as to which I’d rather fish from, the canoe wins. Its much lighter, about 20 lbs unloaded. I use it as my primary fishing craft from March until November, then switch to the kayak. But, if the kayak weighed 40 lbs like the canoe, it might see more action. However, I’ll probably buy a longer solo canoe as my next fishing craft, primarily for the room

Never put your beer in the mostly dry hatch.

Note the front of the cockpit has a rod holder on it. I use one rod in this kayak. There is a spare four piece travel rod in the mostly dry hatch that I can beach and access if I lose the rod from the rod holder. Considering that I have used the rod holder as a handle to re-right the kayak after a spill, I don’t think that’ll happen. It’s a Scotty with a flush mount base.

Note the small cooler strapped to the TOP of the hatch. It is not IN the hatch. I have since purchased a smaller cooler that will fit three cans, a sandwich, and ice behind the backstrap. I generally keep water and Gatorade stashed between the seat and the hull on the sides. I don’t really care if my water and Gatorade get warm.

I have a two tackle bags, one with spinner baits and one with everything else but terminal tackle, on a line that I’ve poked through the center support and put clips on either end. One bag by each leg. I carved out a notch in the foam center support and put a small double sided Plano box with my terminal tackle in it. Then I poked a small line with a snap through to keep the Plano box snapped into place in case of a capsize. As I wear out a soft plastic, I tuck it into a pocket. Last time I capsized, the only thing I lost was my sunglasses because I forgot to put a strap on them. Even the cooler stayed put because of the mil-spec bungee I have holding it down.

Very comfortable, everything I need, and even some things just for comfort. In cooler weather, I keep a change of clothes, fire starting material, and high energy food like dry fruits in a mostly dry bag in the mostly dry hatch.

  • Big D

I felt the same way at first.
But after a year of tweaking,and downsizing. I feel I have my kayak just about perfect. I have a 12’ Perception Prodigy, 4 rod holders, 2 5’ rods, 2 anchors, tackle box, cooler, net, gps, am/fm radio, bait container. I am thinking of the addition of a fishfinder this year. I am 6’3" 210 lbs. I must admit, sometimes I do wish I had more space. Good luck!

That’s a damn beautiful river
Is it the 'doah?

That’s the New in WV
It is beautiful.

Here’s this:

And especially this:

Just after taking that shot, my friend exclaimed “Why would ANYONE want to live in a desert?”

Another of the same river:

And here’s one for the guys on the “nice” boards who say that pumpkin seed boats don’t belong in whitewater:

The guy paddling teaches swiftwater rescue to professional search & rescue teams and is a past president of Virginia Search & Rescue. He knows his s*** with paddling.

  • Big D

Double hear ya’
The only kayaks I have used that I found to be decent for fishing are sit on tops. Mostly because of their open deck design. I stored everything in the tankwell behind me. Stuff I wouldn’t need went in the hatch up front. To get something behind you just sit side saddle and root around back there to your heart’s desire. I really liked those boats and have often thought of getting one again, if I could find a lightweight one. The only problem is the water here stays cold most of the summer. Shorts maybe for a month only. I’d have to wear breathable waders to stay out any length of time in a wet cockpit. Not fun when it’s 80 degrees.

I also Fish out of a Dirigo 120 and love it. I take 2 rods mounted in Scotty rod holders on the front of the cockpit. I use paddle clips and a paddle leash for the paddle. The only thing in the cockpit is a softsided tacklebox with three trays. The leatherman and clippers are on my belt. I have a bottle of water in the drink holder in the seat to be converted to another use later. I use rod floats. The rear hatch is actually pretty easy to get to after you’ve done it a few times. I haven’t had problems with hooksets but I do hate to paddle in the wind.

The 140 is too big.
I don’t think that I could get to any rod holder mounted in front of the cockpit: it’s just too long. I’m going to mount my Scotty in the space designed for it.

You can mount behind the cockpit too
I did that with my America. It’s 13’4", and even with my long gorilla arms it can be a challange to reach the front deck. I keep a small lunch cooler full of soft plastics strapped to the rear deck and two rods in Scotty rod holders mounted behind the cockpit. I’m going to do that trick with carving out a notch in the foam support for my terminal tackle holder and the line with clips on it for my tackle bags. But I don’t use the America much any more. It feels to big and sloppy to me now that I’ve gotten used to shorter, more responsive kayaks. If I want big, sloppy, and unresponsive, I’ll just go to my Scanoe. The nice thing about the Scanoe is that it is SO big, sloppy, and unresponsive, I can stand while I float and site cast the hole way. I’d like to learn poling so that I don’t have to keep sitting down to steer.

  • Big D

My Scotty’s are mounted on each side of
the cockpit within reach, but out of the way of my paddle stroke. Plenty of area to mount the rod holders up there out of the way. As Big D suggests, they can also be mounted behind the cockpit and on either side, or both.

I was thinking about that
(mounting them behind the cockpit) but descided to hold off on that untill after I see if I can make this thing work. I’m lax to be putting a bunch of holes in a brand new boat for no reason.

I saw on another site where a guy had cut up a plastic cutting board to make a work-deck for the front of his kayak to mount tackle holders and his rod holder too. It looked like a good (and potentially removable) solution to me not only because I don’t want to drill up my boat but also to reduce the reach in my insanely long cockpit.

Has any one tried velcroing thier Planos to th inside of the hull tucked up under the gunnals? I am thinking that this might be a great place to sore them. I am also considering cutting slots into the “child seat” but am leaning moretwords mounting electronics on that later on.

My past experience with marine velcro
wasn’t too good. It didn’t hold for long. Velcro also attracts all sorts of debris and crap. It may work for you as I’m a messy fisherman.

I use a fishing dashboard.

– Last Updated: Jun-30-08 6:20 PM EST –

Here is a link to some rigged for fishing kayaks. The fishing dashboard I use is on the first page, on the red kayak. Hope this helps.
If nothing else, you can get some good ideas from all the picks. I have 2 Scotty rod holders mounted to my dashboard, and it works great.