Best Fishing Kayak Reviews – Brands, Ratings & Guide | Water Kayaks

For anglers, picking the right fishing kayak tends to be a daunting and an uphill task, since the monster you pick turns to be a part of your long-term investment. Diving back to history, these vessels were developed by the indigenous people of the Arctic regions. The original versions were made from stitched animal hides such as the seals. However, native people in the cold areas never relied on the Best fishing kayaks purposes.

In contrast, recent years have encountered a surge in sports fishing using these vessels, especially in regions with the warm climate. Best Fishing Kayak has annexed popularity due to its extensive appeal, posing as an environmentally friendly and safe mode of transportation and fewer entry requirements. Each and every fisherman would argue that their Vessel is the best, and the only monster in the market. New models are coming into the market almost daily, due to new and already existing industries. 

Most popular models are made from polythene due to higher durability and minimal costs. Due to inflatable kayaks being susceptible to punctures, anglers prefer the hard shell models. These vessels are overly spreading in the fishing communities due to their ability to enable anglers to venture into waters.

In the recent years, due to a high influx in demand for the fishing monsters, industries had to design new vessels with skill and finesse to prevent them from tipping over. This led to a sprout of a new generation of a catamaran that enabled the fisherman to paddle and fish while in a standing position. Having the best and reliable vessel can offer an impeccable advantage to anglers out in the deep waters. 

For you to identify the best model, you need to identify where your fishing activity will be taking place, such as salty or fresh waters, large lakes or farm ponds, deep sea or rivers, warm or cold waters. This is essential since different kayaks have a unique suitability to different weather conditions and fishing areas. Basically, these fishing machines are quieter and almost unnoticeable by fish, hence ensuring effective fishing is achieved by anglers. In order to identify the right machine to suit your environment and needs, here are some of the major factors to consider:

Best Fishing Kayaks

Our Selections of Best Fishing Kayaks Compared!

History of Kayaks and Kayaking

Intuits created the first kayaks many years ago while living in Canada, Russia, Alaska, and Greenland. The name given to these people at the time was Eskimos. They made the kayaks with light driftwood or by stretching animal skins over frames that were made from whalebones. The vessels were further waterproofed to prevent them from sinking. This was easy due to the availability of whale fat which covered the vessels as desired thus preventing entry of water. The kayaks could be used in hunting and fishing since they were safe. The safety guaranteed protection for the lives of people who used these vessels. The stealth nature of the vessels further facilitated hunting. Larger kayaks could be used to facilitate movement of families in different circumstances.

The size and design of the kayaks depended on the location and needs of the owner. For instance, wider kayaks were made for residents in Greenland because they were mostly used for hunting. On the other hand, kayaks made for Aleutians' residents were narrow and long to facilitate speed because they were used for long distance travels. Intuits met with Russians in the Aleutian Islands in 1?40's as Russians were on their way searching for sea otters and seals. Trade began between them because the Intuits were well proficient in that task. Based on Intuits design, Macgregor was able to make his own kayak in 1845. Rob Roy was the name given to this kayak while a canoe was the word used to refer to British kayak.

Hans Kleppe, a German updated the kayak in 1905. Aluminum covered with a removable skin was used to make the frame of the kayak. This kayak was referred to as foldable kayak. Sea kayakers and river kayakers were grouped differently in British in the 1920s. In 1930's, the river kayaking was recognized as a sport that was allowed in Olympics. Sea kayaking for recreation became more popular much later in the 1960's in the United States. Plastic kayaks were introduced in 1970's; these were produced cheaply and more efficiently.

They are referred to as white water kayaks and remained undamaged even after being subjected to fast-moving waters. Thereafter kayaks were used by explorers and adventurists as well as wildlife photographers due to their availability and efficiency. Many designs came up thus improving the quality of the traditional kayaks.

Kayaks have evolved with time giving rise to various designs that can be used for different purposes. Computer software has been used in combination with the computer aided design customized for naval design in the making of modern kayaks. Special materials have been used in the making of modern kayaks. These include nitryl on, neoprene, polyvinyl chloride, aluminum, carbon fiber, fiberglass, and wood just to mention a few. The use of these modern materials is what has made it possible to use the modern kayaks for so many purposes. Some of the common uses include racing, touring on placid water, fishing, and moving in fast-moving white water. The various types of kayaks include; racing kayaks, surf kayaks, touring kayaks, recreational and fishing kayaks. In most cases, today kayaks are made for commercialization rather than for personal use as was the case in traditionally.

Structure and Design

For these vessels, each comes with its unique specifications suitable for different anglers and uses. The shape of the hull, width, and length vary. There are thin and longer models, and wider shorter models. The thin and longer models were built for purpose of long journeys, due to their requirement of less effort for paddling. The slim shape ensures better speed and versatility. The broader models have high stability and require a lot of energy and effort to paddle. However, the wider model tends to be slower and less versatile. Some vessels are made to sit-on-top while others have a cock-pit like the model. Sit-on-top models provide flexibility for anglers to comfortably wade, while traditional cock-pit models, also known as sit-in models are not flexible to wade. However, sit-in models are effective for fishing in regions with cold water. They also have a good stability.

Budget

When choosing the best powerful tool, ensure that you take into consideration your financial status. For anglers who are comfortable being handy, a rigged angler model can be fine but very expensive. Find an efficient and appealing model that fits within your budget. Companies are coming up with better designs made from light materials and hence a variety of models that are cheap.

Durability

For how long are you willing to use the vessel? Here you can choose between an inflatable and hard shell models. Inflatable models are suitable for cool waters while the hard shell is suitable for rough waters.

Purpose

Is your kayak only for fishing activities? Or sometimes paddling through rough waters? Or just spending time off shore with family or friends? The purpose of your vessel will very much affect the type of boat to purchase.

Fishing grounds

Different machines are suitable for different regions. Make sure you consider whether your fishing will take place in streams, ponds, rivers, salty or fresh waters, estuaries and flat waters.

After a comprehensive study and research, some of the boats seem to be standing out among the rest. Their appeal, speed, agility, designs and effectiveness is impeccable.

Our Picks of 10 Best Fishing Kayak For 2017

01. Malibu Kayaks Stealth 9 Fish and Dive Kayak

Malibu Kayaks Stealth 14 Fish and Dive Package Sit on Top Kayak

by Malibu Kayaks

Installed with the latest features, the stealth-14 was manufactured for anglers who need an extremely stable machine for their fishing activities. stealth-14 is a roto-molded vessel made from linear polyethylene, and hence durable. It is a brand of Malibu and costs an average of $ 1,299.99. The vessel has a standing platform that distinguishes it from other boats. 

Basically, with a length of 14' 4'' and a width of 33", it guarantees enough space. It has a depth of 12'', average hull weight of 62lbs and a maximum capacity of 550lbs. Stealth-14 is capable of comfortably accommodating 2 people. It comes with an extremely comfortable and impressive x-seat to provide maximum comfort. A unique Gator hatch provides the perfect and enough storage for the angler's gear.

In calm waters, its stable stature ensures a dry ride and a steady ride in rough waters. This boat is widely used in salty waters where big fish are prevalent. It is installed with drain plugs, hence it has a self-draining system that ensures water drains completely from the vessel. The foot pegs are meticulously designed with a small moveable piece of metal attached for comfort. 

Other features present in this great Best fishing kayak are a fish finder that is mounted on a hull transducer, a cup holder molded on the kayak, stern handles, foot track that is adjustable, bow handles, rod holders, eyelets, hooks made of nylon and paddle holders. Advantages of using a stealth-14 as a fishing boat include:

Highlighted Features

  • High level of stability.
  • Very comfortable.
  • Great and impressive storage area.
  • Made of quality materials.
  • Floats easily.

02. Malibu Kayaks X-Caliber Fish and Dive Kayak

Malibu Kayaks X-Caliber Fish and Dive Kayak

by Malibu Kayaks

This impressive boat was made with a meticulous design to ensure every kayaker is comfortable riding. It was an introduction aimed for intermediate anglers. With a length of 12' 6'' and a width of 31", this boat would be termed as highly suitable for shallow waters. It has a depth of 12" and a seating of 1-2. Weighing 32lbs and the ability to carry a maximum capacity of 400lbs, it is easier to lift onto roof racks. Being an upgraded version, it has an extra seating near the gator hatch, hence the ability to accommodate a family. Its sleek design brings about its excellent appeal, and its light weight ensuring easier transportation. 

On the side are carry handles that are movable. The rear side has two rods with a transducer, where the fish finder is attached. The presence of a bottle holder ensures your beverages are secure during your cruise. The rear bungee provides an increased storage space for your gear. Other features that are installed on the X-caliber include rudder inserts, hull access, trolling mount, paddle holds, center hatch, bow handles, and stern handles. Anglers using this monster have some advantages:

Highlighted Features

  • Lightweight- Easier to cruise.
  • An adjustable footrest that provides comfort.
  • Large storage bay for gear and accessories.
  • Best for recreation and fishing activities.

03. Lifetime 10 Foot Sport Fisher Tandem Kayak

Lifetime 10 Foot Sport Fisher Tandem Kayak

by Lifetime

This Kayak has not been into the market for long, but it’s already overtaking earlier models due to its amazing design and affordable price. However, this machine is highly suitable for fishing activities in lakes. It is the perfect model to use when relaxing with family or close friends. Its speed is determined by the amount of power produced during paddling. 

This Kayak reaches its maximum speed by few strokes. This boat puts you exactly where it is best to catch fish. The functionality of the kayak is worth the buck. The Kayak is 10” and boasts an effective tunnel-like hull design that supports standing up while angling. It can hold up to 3 individuals with a maximum capacity of 500 lbs.

Highlighted Features

The lifetime to best fishing Kayak has a dig stock compartment and bungee straps to secure the accessories. The presence of an ear mounts to store your cars when not in use. Polythene plastic material ensures solidness. Its light weight ensures simple transportation. The scupper openings ensure water drainage from the cockpit.

  • It is designed for solo or coupled adventure.
  • Accommodates up to 3 people.
  • Dry stock compartment.
  • Ensures efficient UV-protection.
  • Has a light weight.
  • Different footrest positions.
  • T-handles in the front and rear side.

For anglers and people aspiring to go on an outdoor activity off the shore, this monster can be ideal for the fun. It is very stable Kayak that ensures stability when standing up to fish. The foot rests provide maximum comfort while gliding through the waves. This Kayak contains holders for fishing poles, hence eliminating time used to juggle the poles.

With the capability of UV protection, this monster retains its original color. It provides an optional mount where you can include a motor engine.

Advantages of using this kayak

  • Availability of large space.
  • Permits you to fit your family and rigging.
  • Presence of Kayak extras.
  • Presence of ergonomic seats with awesome back rests. It has numerous stool positions that guarantee comfort ability for all statures of paddlers.
  • Quality construction: It is built using light and solid polythene, which is UV secured. This durable stature is effective in preventing punctures in rocky water.
  • Solidness: It is extremely steady and does not easily toggle.

04. Ocean Kayak Trident 13 Angler Kayak - Sit-On-Top

Ocean Kayak Trident 13 Angler Kayak - Sit-On-Top

by Ocean Kayak

The trident fishing kayak is good for anglers who extremely love adventures in open waters. This vessel is efficient for deep and skinny water bodies. With the introduction of a better and new re-design, this vessel brings about a combination of classic features. 

The boat has an ability to handle rough waters in a fine manner. The trident comprises dimensions of 13’ 6’’ * 29’’ and with a weight of 79lbs. With a maximum capacity of 355lbs, it is an ideal product for onshore and inshore activities.

The trident is had the desired performance stability, perfect speed, and maneuverability. This monster was designed to outsmart the 13” hull. The presence of acs2 seating and the moveable foot pegs provides comfort for any paddler. It is a boat with the ability to glide in any water surfaces with its superb effectiveness in rough seas.

Mod pod design - It is slightly narrower to allow effective stand-up fishing. It contains a folding hatch that has a cup holder and storage magnetized to hold accessories.

ACS II seat - Provides comfort for the angler. Contains hard bucket and is very light. It has a concrete support and sturdy back.

Maximum storage - It comes with a large bow hatch and an enormous tank.

Efficient foot pedals - These can be used to move back and forth.

Highlighted Features

  • Polyethylene plastic.
  • Comfort ACS II seat.
  • Large stern with bungee rigging.
  • Enough bow hatch space.
  • Dual paddle.
  • Bow handles and stern handle.
  • Scupper holes.
  • Angler package.
  • Bag for battery storage.
  • 2 -mount rod holders.
  • Sonar shield.
  • Drifts and turns perfectly.
  • It has minimal rockers hence efficiency to cut through waves.
  • Very stable.
  • Great price and excellent value.
  • Enough storage space.
  • Quality rod pod.
  • Paddling enables perfect gliding.

05. Hobie Mirage Outback Kayak Olive

Hobie Mirage Outback Kayak Olive

by Hobie

The mirage outback is the most popular among the mirage driven family. It is suitable for oceans, rivers, and lakes. Its price ranges from $2,499 - $2,649. With its legendary design and stature, it has a space for only a single person. It was a length of 12” 7” and a width of 33”. The Hobie Mirage Outback weighs 400lbs, with the hulk weighing 81lbs and a fully rigged capacity of 99 lbs. The hull is made of roto-molded polythene, hence ensures durability.

The mirage drive is perfect and superb for anglers. With the ability to propel easily, it minimizes the time lost due to poor positioning. Peddling on mirage outback is minimal, and is only required to change drift or maintain the machine.

Mirage outbreak has an outstanding stability in that it allows standing and ensures the angler moves around with ease and unhindered. This vessel has an enormous rigging space and the mirage drive providing and extremely efficient speed. The mirage drive is actually removable and very light. The bow hatch is large enough to enable easy access to the storage area.

Rod holders securely hold your rods and ensure perfect trolling. An efficient lid ratchets the sealed hatch and the 8”twist keeping items secure. The presence of the mesh stowage pocket provides faster access to accessories highly required by the angler.

Carrying handles attached on either side of the cockpit make it easier for the angler to negotiate, transport or launch. The rudder controls are fitted with a soft handle that makes steering easier. Inside the cockpit is a cozy vantage CT seating which has 4-way adjustability for better flexibility, comfort, and visibility.

Sometimes anglers encounter surf-strewn beeches and some very rocky inlets. The presence of a two-piece paddle on the boat ensures confidence during navigation. Hobie mirage outback is fitted with the twist and stow rudder that has a t-shape for engaging and disengaging the rudder system.

The 8-gallon live-well, which is custom designed ensures efficiency for users. Due to the Hobie Evolve Electric Motor; this monster has a quite but effective motor system. It is fitted with two hatches that have the twist and turn mechanism to lock. The front hatch can be used for dry bags and is effectively protected by a bungee.

Highlighted Features

  • Color: Olive.
  • It's very comfortable and fast.
  • Construction Type: polyethylene.
  • Included Components: rudder.
  • Seat Material Type: foam.

Kayak Fishing Basics: How to Choose a Kaya - Video

Final Verdict

Fishing kayaks are reasonably affordable but rarely accessed in local stores. This is due to the fact that, these vessels are not manufactured in large scale. The ability to establish the best fishing kayak is a daunting task since every angler has a different perspective. However, taking into consideration all the features portrayed by the different kayaks, we can possibly deduce the best vessel among the rest. While no fishing boat will be perfect for every scenario, buyers with a higher budget will have the advantage of purchasing the finest products in the market. 

Basically, the best vessels are usually the most expensive, since they include extra features that are not present in other machines. Some of the exceptional features noticed in the rich vessels comprise the foot-powered propulsion unit, battery to power the system and accessory rails. Each of the models has a different design prospect that can help you determine the best and sleek- model to purchase for fishing ordeals. 

For real anglers, fishing is not just a sport or recreational activity. Fishing using a kayak is more about enjoyment and self-fulfillment. A better performing monster guarantees more excitement and fun. There has been an increase in kayak angling in the recent years compared to the last decade. These machines cost lesser than motor boats and deliver as much. In determining the best fishing kayak, identifying your personal preferences comes in handy. The best fishing vessel should provide an intimate and accessible approach to fishing. Such a vessel ensures a better experience for the kayakers. 

When deciding on the best of the best, there’s no one-size vessel that is efficient for all anglers. Your kayak highly depends on your physical ability, your ideal fishing ground, distance to cover and the amount of gear to carry with you. However, the stealth-14 gives every ideal fisherman a reason to smile. It is a great kayak that brings a sweet fishing experience. Its durability, stability and storage space are the major factors that make it an effective monster in the water. Some of the reasons to enable you to choose the stealth include;

a) Ability to stand

Its stand-ability ensures a better and effective sight of the catch. This technology provided a solution to the ergonomic problems caused as a result of sitting for extremely long hours.

b) Live well

This is one of the major points that enable the selling of the stealth machine. It allows keeping the bait alive and sometimes can be converted into a cooler or fish storage.

c) Family matters

The stealth vessel is cozy enough with enough space to serve as a family machine. It is an extremely sweet rig for serious fishermen and family guys.

d) Impeccable stability

The sturdy structure of this vessel ensures that it is impossible to flip it over. This ensures safety and boosts rider confidence while gliding in the waters.

e) Durability

This is the ability of a product to last for the expected period of time. The hull of this vessel is solid and its hatches are held up perfectly to suit lots of standing activity.

f) Weight

Its 62lbs makes it much lighter in comparison to other vessels of its class. This makes it very manageable.

g) Rod holders

The presence of strong and standard two fronts and two rear rods ensures it’s the perfect machine for guys who love fishing with multiple rods.

h) Tracking

It perfectly glides in the water making it efficient in both speed and agility. As a result, less effort is needed to ride.

i) High and Dry

The stealth-14 is high and hence provides a very dry ride, hence efficient for cold waters.

j) Rear storage and side storage hatches

The side storage hatches ensure accessories stashed are safe and secure. The rear storage is huge, allowing for storage of maximum luggage.

Finally, the stealth-14 is one of the highly rated kayaks due to its efficiency. We would recommend this impeccable product to every ideal fisherman as the best fishing kayak ever developed. There is no disappointment regardless of your size and physical abilities.

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