We're joining the canoe fishing world

Hi -

I’m a 45-year old Iowa mom who just bought a Guide 147 to take her 15-year old son and 11-year old daughter out fishing on local lakes with.

We’ve shore fished for years and decided this is our next step. My husband likes to canoe, but isn’t crazy about fishing so I don’t think he’ll be with us much!

If you have any tips for us fishing with this boat, I’m all ears. (eyes?!) I’m looking forward to learning from all of you.

fishing from a canoe is great fun …

– Last Updated: Apr-04-09 11:52 PM EST –

....... I've owned many power boats and seen many waters .... use a jet outboard on an alum. river boat too .... but the canoe is my favorite of all time , it just has it's limitations as to weather , water and power , so I use it as much as I can , when and where I can .

I'd like to know about how much time you have in a canoe at present ?? The Old Town Guide 147 is a good solid canoe to fish from , don't let anyone tell you different ... we personally use an OT Expedition 169 .

We don't need to talk about having and wearing good quality PFD's , do we ??

New to canoe fishing
Good boat, practically indestructible, little or no maintenance.

My main concern is 3 of you fishing from it at the same time. Three people and their gear could make it a bit crowded for casting, stretching legs, etc. I have a 16 footer that is just right for two adults.

However, I suspect the kids may eventually appropriate the 147 for themselves as they become comfortable and more experienced canoeists. Do I see two canoes in your future? LOL.

No problem
Yes, we have good PFD’s. Only two of us are going out at a time.

In fact, yesterday we went lake trout fishing. Had a blast and caught some trout!

Only one bit.
With two folks fishing from a 14’ canoe, I suggest in all seriousness that each occupant wears sunglasses, or if you are fishing at night then clear safety glasses. Have a debarb tool (google it) or use either barbless hooks or hooks with the barbs mashed down. Have a first aid kit along.

You’ll probably never need these precautions, but probably isn’t strong enough when I’m fishing with my kids.

Ends up I do have one more bit of advice. I never take my good rods out on a canoe or kayak. I have more modest outfits that I use. Things get broken and lost aboard a canoe. If that happens, don’t be hard on your kids. It’s just part of it. Still, you probably don’t want the rod that gets lost to be your $300 custom made wonder-rod balanced with your $430 reel. It’s rare that I fish with a combo that costs more than $100 all told, unless I fish with a fly-rod. If I fish with a fly-rod, I’m quite careful about where and how it gets put down.

Good luck and have fun. You’re in a for a whole new level of adventure.

I almost forgot to thank you for raising another generation of fishers. Thank you. It’s important. Teach them well how to steward the resources they use.

  • Big D

First step
Make sure you can paddle together well and that you each understand the strokes needed if the other one is fishing. Fishing from a canoe if you don’t understand how to handle it is difficult, otherwise it’s heaven on earth.

Find the weed line
All the small lakes I fish in Idaho have a weed line 50 to 60 feet off shore. Anchor on either side and spend a morning or afternoon catching more fish than you need.

Take a sack lunch to enjoy on some remote shore. Kids love the adventure and you will have fun too.

I’m new to canoe fishing as well. Actually don’t even own a canoe yet. Still researching and hoping to find a used canoe.

Anyway, just curious how you’re transporting the Guide? Is it manageable with the two kids?

Guide weight
There’s no doubt that the Guide 147 is a bit heavy. However my son is 15 and can help me lift it onto the top of our SUV with no problem. I bought a Yakima system to carry it so once it’s up there, it’s easy. I also bought a side loading bar which telescopes out from one of the rack bars so if I have to load it myself (or with my 11-year old daughter) I can brace it on that.

I just ordered a small wheeled cart from LL Bean to put one end of the canoe on while transporting it from the car to the water. This is all a lot of money up front, but will make our trips a lot easier and more enjoyable.

I miss…
…Iowa. Great fishing and great people. Still have lots of family there. Maybe I need to bring my boat and “visit” with family this summer!!

Enjoy the family time and Iowa!