15 tips for kayak fishing safety

Kayak fishing is one of my true passions, its an amazing sport which is rapidly growing in popularity. There is however some dangerous elements to kayak fishing, If you have recently purchased a fishing kayak, or thinking of taking up this sport take please take some time to consider these basic safety tips. It will ensure that you kayak fishing adventures are fun and safe.

Here are 15 Kayak fishing safety tips to get you started.

1. When starting go out with other experienced anglers. If you don’t have any friends that have their own kayak, then join some social media groups there are people always more then willing to join you.

2. Know when not to launch, just use common sense if you turn up and its choppy then simply don’t go out in the water.

3. Always wear a life jacket and get your inflatable life jacket serviced or replaced as per manufacturers instructions.

4. Be organised. Don’t take too many rods,  Have a secure spot for knives, scissors, tackle boxes.

5. Using a paddle leash and a rod leash is a must.

6. Buy a cheap walkie talkie and communicate with your buddies, or have your phone in a waterproof pocket.

7. Never go out in poor weather conditions. Use tools weather apps to carefully study the weather forecast before planning your trip. Learn to read  wind and swell patterns and how it impacts the area your fishing. Apps such as Meteye, and willysweather are good starting spots. 

8. When fishing keep the drag on your fishing reels set nice and loose. I have personally seen a few kayakers go overboard due to a stingray, banjo or large fish.  

9. Be sun smart, UV shield, sunscreen, and a bottle of water.

10. Start slow, maybe start in lakes on calm days, and build up your skills, if you go out in the bay don’t go too far out.

11. Let others know where you’re going. Make sure they know where your launching from, who your going with and what time your expected back.

12. Keep space between you and others. Especially boats and powered vessels.

13. Wear high vis clothing or flags, so others know where you are.

14. Have days on the water were you practice how to get back on your kayak should you accidently fall off. This might include flipping your kayak and getting back on. It is a skill that takes practice.

15. Don’t paddle to far out. Always make sure your not to exhausted to get back to your original location or that you cant paddle through currents.

There are more key safety ideas that you can look into, these 15 tips will get you started. Your skills and awareness will improve with experience, so get out there, stay safe and learn of others.