Kayak Fishing In Freezing Canada

The phrase “Kayak Fishing in Canada” is sure to send a chill down (or up) your spine, doesn’t it?
Think about the cold water (brrr…) and the cold wind blowing (brrr as well…), and if you’re sitting in a SOT kayak or Sit In kayak you’re freezing – literally. But it doesn’t necessarily have to be like that, and not all fishing kayaks are prone to send you home with a wet butt and a running nose.

The notion of kayak fishing in Canada, a relentlessly cold area, will immediately bring up images of uncomfortably frigid trips and an overall undesirable experience.

The combination of bitterly cold wind and the constant splashing of icy water makes fishing from a traditional fishing kayak in Canada sound preposterous at any time except summer.

However, this need not be the case. Even though most fishing kayaks leave you with a soaked behind and a cold the next day, a new type of fishing kayak, dubbed the Wavewalk Fishing Kayak, will let you stay high, dry and out of the cold. The saddle design elevates you high above the water level, while increasing your stability and decreasing or even eliminating the chance that you will tumble into the cold Canadian waters. Even when fitted with outriggers, no fishing kayak matches the stability of the W.

Also, around the cockpit of this fishing kayak is an elevated lip, or freeboard, that protects the angler from freezing spray, a necessity while kayak fishing in Canada and any other cold climate in general.

Read more about kayak fishing in cold water on the Wavewalk blog>>

Kayak Fishing Pain With Jeff

Experienced kayak angler from Florida, Jeff McGovern has made some observations:

“Yet another problem in fishing kayaks is shoulder pain, as some of my common kayak friends have talked about- they often communicate that they need to get multiple shoulder problems fixed. Certain anglers have deformities on their shoulders which can be immediate threats. His main problem is casting from his sit on top kayak, which is very painful for his shoulder. The awkward casting angles are painful for my friend as well as others, so he is forced to fish by standing in the water and wade fishing. My friend is twenty five, and there should be no way a product is so painful to use, even for very young people. Whereas conventional kayaks limit your kayak fishing abilities, my Wavewalk fishing kayak offers a tremendous advantage when I power cast. I’ve never had to experience the described  pain in casting from the low L position, as my fishing kayak allows you to fish from a superior position.”

To get a better grasp of these problems, ask yourself these question:
Who in their right mind casts from docks or from large motorboats cast sitting with their legs perpendicular to their back? Who would subject themselves to this uncomfortable posture of their own volition, especially if less painful alternatives are available, like fishing standing up?

Of course no one fishes in the L posture while on land or in large boats, and no one has even considered it.

In different terms, this posture should never be considered suitable for kayak fishing, but conventional sit-in and sit-on fishing kayaks have no reasonable alternative. Anglers do not want to spend time and money with larger fishing boats, they must deal with this inconvenient hindrance to their enjoyment of kayak fishing, yo even be able to fish.”

As stated, conventional fishing kayaks all have this problem, so why not look towards the unconventional? The perfect fishing kayak would have an innovative new ability to use alternate postures. One such kayak comes to mind: The Wavewalk fishing kayak, mentioned in McGovern’s quote. This fishing kayak offers the ability to utilize new positions, like the riding and standing position, through its saddle, which allows for more powerful casting and a better overall experience when kayak fishing.

 Shoulder pain in kayak fishing while casting is discussed often in the kayak fishing world, and there are many articles written on it.

More Foam, More Lumbar Problems

Research on lumbar support in kayaks, demonstrates that remaining seated in the L position with footrest/backrest combo creates tension that is greatly unhealthy for your back, and results in an excessive amount of discomfort and pain.

Cushioning the seat of your fishing kayak with extra padding may alleviate pain for a short while, but it fails to solve the dilemma in the long run. What pushes the Lumbar spine up against the backrest while in the L position is the strongest muscles in your body, your legs, which are perpendicular to your back and are pushing against the footrest:
You don’t want something pushing against your back that can also propel you for long distances at running speeds, as well as lift your entire body of the ground when your jump. 

Your legs act as a sort of piston when in the L position, slamming your back against the backrest of your fishing kayak. Since there are very few bones and no large muscles in the are where the backrest and back meet, all the pressure is focused on a small area, your lumbar spine.

The forces pressing against your back are almost equivalent to the force needed to support your body weight, to put the pressure in perspective.

The harder you paddle, cast, or do other activities that require your legs to keep you in place, the more pressure is applied to your lumbar, or on top of your fishing kayak.

The more tired your body becomes, and the more uncomfortable, the more tense you become, and the more your legs have to work to keep you stable and in place, greatly increasing the pressure on your Lumbar spine, as well as exponentially increasing the pain, and creating an endless circle of fatigue.

Foam does not provide a good solution to the lumbar spine problem to start off, and due to foams compressing over time tendency, initial temporary relief will vanish after a time, and will increase the back resistance, as there is less movement room between your back and legs.

Also, if you are a heavier person, you have the possibility of experiencing butt pain, or as it is more commonly know among kayak fishing circles, yak ass, after kayak fishing in the L position. The nerves in your body, and the foam of your seat, will both become as compressed as pancakes. Leg numbness, leg pain, and butt pain are all directly correlated to compressed nerves, and are a common phenomena in the kayak fishing world. This intense pain is not a joke once you start feeling it, and has discouraged many prominent kayak anglers.

In summary, most sit-on top kayaks nowadays are equipped with heavily padded foam backrests, designed to reduce pain. Even with these specially designed seats, kayak anglers that use these fishing kayaks experience many of these symptoms: Fatigue, back soreness, yak ass, yak back, and leg pain. This creates a need for rest periods, where you must interrupt your kayak fishing for a “un-kinking” rest break.

In the Wavewalk fishing kayak, there is no L position, instead there is the Riding Position. Similar to riding a horse, your legs support your body weight, while helping you paddle, balance, and fish.

This revolutionary new type of fishing kayak allows the angler to change between a number of other positions at any time, which include the Standing Up position and the Sitting position (this position is like being seated in a canoe) . This means you can relax, stretch, and fish comfortably for very long stretches of time, without having the problem of pain, numbness, or soreness in any part of your body.