The Best Fishing Kayaks

Kayaks are an ideal way to fish, providing anglers with the opportunity to get to areas that a motorized boat would be difficult to reach. They are easy to transport, less expensive and generally safer for the environment than powered boats.

The best fishing kayaks are versatile, comfortable and equipped with the right accessories to make your experience on the water more enjoyable. These kayaks come in a wide range of price points, sizes and styles to fit any budget and skill level.

Hull type: The most popular hull types for fishing are sit-on-tops and sit-insides. Sit-on-tops are self-bailing (they have scuppers in the bottom of the hull that drain out excess water) and offer a higher weight capacity than their sit-inside counterparts. They also have more stability and allow you to stand up for casting and reeling in large fish.

Size: The length of your kayak should be determined by where you plan to fish and how much gear you plan on carrying with you. If you plan on paddling in larger lakes and ponds, a longer kayak will give you more room for extra equipment, such as live bait, a cooler, fishing poles and a fish finder.

Pedal drive: If you’re looking for an easier way to maneuver your fishing kayak, pedal drive systems are becoming more common on many kayaks. Pedal drive systems are easy to use and provide an optimal speed range for a comfortable ride. They’re also good for those who like to “troll” or cast around docks or shorelines while traveling at a steady pace.

Rudders: A rudder system on a kayak can help you track better in wind and choppy waters. Some kayaks even come with rudders already installed, which is a great option for paddlers who are new to kayaking and want an easier way to learn the ropes.

Seat: A good seat for a fishing kayak should be comfortable and support you while you’re standing and sitting. Having a high-quality, padded seat with adjustable height will ensure your comfort and safety while you’re out on the water.

Storage: Does your kayak have any internal storage for rods and dry bags? Some models offer hard, enclosed hatches in the bow, stern and midship for dry storage, while others have bungee cords to secure dry bags.

Are you a minimalist or do you have a lot of gear to carry with you? Some fishing kayaks have multiple storage compartments and/or a large tank well with room for milk crates, tackle boxes, rod holders and other essentials.

Is your kayak a solo or tandem?

Depending on your personal preferences and budget, you may prefer to purchase a kayak that can be used as a solo or a tandem. A tandem is a great choice for anglers who enjoy sharing a day on the water with their friends or families.

The FeelFree Lure II is a good choice for a tandem, as it features multiple gear tracks, two sonar pods for no-drill fish finder installation, adjustable footrests, a dry storage hatch, and two flush-mount rod holders.