A Kayak Fly Fishing Primer
In essence, it would only make sense that roughly 4 hours into me owning a kayak, my mind was racing; not only about where I would fish, but how.
I was only a serious angler for 2 years before I was drawn to fly fishing, so it would also follow that I would dream up ways that fly fishing would be BETTER from a kayak.
If you’re new to either sport, read on here, as I think I’ve compiled a list of things a novice kayak fly fisherman should know. Part of it is intuitive, but parts of it come with practice, hours on the water in a kayak, and a few bad breaks. Here goes.
In a Kayak, Almost Everywhere is Reachable
One of the first things to consider is how much your world expands when you get your first kayak. Shore access becomes nothing more than a list of possible launch points. The best holes become the OLD best holes.
It doesn’t take much imagination to figure out that when you can paddle, there’s a lot of water that opens up to you, so long as you’re willing to paddle back to where you started. In trout streams, that’s not always easy. You’ll need some experience to recognize what you can paddle back through, and what ends up becoming a point of no return.
Some of this can be deflected however by fishing with a friend, and parking a carry capable vehicle at both ends of your route.
Many of Western New York’s trout waters meander through miles and miles of wide open spaces, in and out of posted property, and into some fairly nasty terrain. By floating down stream to those spots, and parking the kayak, you can reach holes unfished to for years.
Bear in mind, private property laws still exist, and they apply to navigable waterways as well. In a future issue, I’ll take a deeper look at this, as the law is tending to favor the paddler as opposed to the landowner to an extent. None of that of course means you should skirt the law: A creek properly posted on both sides is NOT fishable, even if it’s navigable. You can paddle, but not fish.
Tagged fly fishing