Fly fishing and kayaks can go together like peanut butter and jelly once you master the combination. Fly fishing form a kayak can be one of the most effective ways to fly fish. I personally enjoy fly-fishing from a kayak above all different methods of fly fishing. Although it does have its challenges, once you fine-tune everything it can become game changing. Your process will depend on your own person skill set and you will have to learn different casting techniques that you would normally not use on land or in a bigger boat. However, there are many advantages to moving your fly fishing game to a kayak, for example, you can get to places that no one else can get to. Also, your presence is so small that you see and get shots at many more fish. Here are a few pointers for making your kayak fly fishing journey a success.
Being organized can be the night and day difference of having a poor day or the day of a lifetime! When I plan on going fly-fishing from the kayak, I bring minimal equipment out on the yak. Getting your things ready the day before is mandatory: picking out what size rods, lines, and flies helps ensure that there are fewer things that could go wrong on game day. Generally, the only thing I bring on my kayak is my paddle, 1-2 rods/reels, anchor stick, a dry bag to put phone, keys, flies, etc… and maybe a small cooler for drinks and food. Now on my personal body… I have on my life vest, a pair of pliers, and some type of snips for cutting lines or trimming flies. The less stuff you have on your yak, the less likely you are going to tangle or catch your lines.
Once you have fly fished out of a kayak a few times and are starting to get the hang of it, there are a few more things that I would recommend bringing.
Landing net: Using one with a longer handle or an extension handle with rubber mesh can make it easier to land fish depending on how long of a leader you are using. Also, on windy days it can make a great stripping basket.
Stripping basket or mat: Bringing these out on the yak and storing them away while not using them can be kind of difficult. But, on really windy days it can make huge difference with line management.
Push pole: Some sort of push pole depending on the area that you are fishing in. It can help you control and move your kayak while standing. Standing makes it easier to see and locate fish.
Remember, the more stuff you bring out with you the more things you have to be aware of your line getting tangled around. I even ask myself sometimes… why did I bring so much stuff! Haha! Anyways, go out there and give it a try. I promise once all the puzzle pieces all come together, it will become a lifelong obsession.