While considering what kind of fishing kayak to purchase to fulfill your personal requirements, it is of high importance to your wallet to be conscious of the fact that the bottom-line price of a fishing kayak is almost always not limited to just the base cost of the kayak itself. When you factor in the additional cost of the countless accessories necessary to outfit a traditional kayak, you will find that the money piles up and that the add-ons can end up doubling your investment.
However, buying a Wavewalk fishing kayak eliminates much of these expenditures by eradicating the need for these hassling adjuncts.
- Rudder: With superior tracking over competing traditional kayaks, the W kayak gets rid of the the need for a rudder. You save $220 – $300
- Kayak Seat: W Kayaks do not contribute to yak-back, and thus do not necessitate any special seat. (Read more about that her) You save $80 – $200
- Kayak Rack: W kayaks are easy to cartop and fit any car rack – No need to go out of your way for auxiliary kayak rack. You save $50 – $500.
- Outriggers: The W500 kayak model is by far safer and more stable than traditional kayaks, even those equipped with outriggers. The W500 fishing kayak is so stable that their is zero need for outriggers, even with an attached electric trolling motor. You save $100 – $350.
Rudders are a hassle to use, they considerably slow you down, and get easily mired in shallow water and weeds.
Kayak seats are unhealthy for your back, and can turn a pleasant kayak fishing trip into an uncomfortable endeavor. It’s even possible that they will irritate you to the point that you quit kayak fishing in the long run, simply due to the mounting back pain and discomfort.
When using a traditional SOT or sit in kayak, you must place a kayak rack on top of your car rack, taking up a lot of space and disallowing you from carrying other things you may need on top of your car.
Outriggers, which are often necessary to establish adequate stability with the usage of a traditional kayak, are a pain to install, slow you down, and limit your kayak’s mobility and maneuverability. Out of the water, they’re just one more cumbersome thing to carry.
The bottom line is that the slew of accessories needed to utilize a traditional kayak: rudders, yak racks and outriggers, are annoying, expensive, and unwieldy. The added cost of those accessories could top $1,000. Besides the financial investment, your health and peace of mind can be compromised by using these accessories in conjunction with a traditional yak.
In order to avoid endless hassle, discomfort, and a gaping hole in your wallet, go to Wavewalk’s website to find these fishing kayaks.
This article delves into the ‘wet ride’ issue, an uncomfortable problem viewed as intertwined inexorably with forms of kayaking, kayak fishing and kayak types. It illustrates possible dangers and aggravations associated with direct exposure to water, humidity and cold in varying circumstances, and finally presents solutions based on the new, patented technology applied in W fishing kayaks.
Definition of a ‘Wet Ride’ in fishing kayaks.
A wet ride is a common expression describing a kayaker’s experience of paddling and/or fishing while being wet. Many things can cause a wet ride, including stepping in water while launching, being splashed by spray and waves, water getting into the cockpit through the scupper holes in sit-on-top kayaks, condensation under the spray skirt in sit-in kayaks etc.
The most unpleasant sensation associated with the wet ride is sitting in a wet area (the ‘soggy bottom’), but a wet ride can also be hazardous:
The combination of cold water with cold wind can cause hypothermia, even if the kayaker did not go overboard. Hypothermia is a condition that significantly reduces the paddler’s physical and mental ability to navigate and arrive safely to his/her destination.
In warm waters a wet ride could cause exposure to jellyfish larvae (‘sea lice’) in sea water, parasites and bacteria in both fresh and salt water etc., and result in unpleasant and sometime severe skin and allergic reactions.
Snails infected with certain microscopic parasites found in some birds and mammals release those parasites into both fresh and salt water. Swimmer’s itch (cercarial dermatitis), which appears as a skin rash is caused by an allergic reaction to those parasites burrowing in the person’s skin.
The presence of certain chemicals in the water is known to cause unwanted physical reactions as well.
Contact with sea water can cause a highly pruritic eruption known as Seabather’s eruption (SE).
Contact with warm, stagnant waters such as found in swamps can in some extreme cases lead to serious bacterial infections.
Vibrio bacteria are usually found in warm waters. Coming in contact with those flesh eating bacteria can cause severe infections leading to limb loss and even death. Vibriosis is a risk for swimmers, boaters and fishermen.
Giardiasis- an infectious diarrhoeal disease usually transmitted through oralfaecal contact and by contaminated water was diagnosed in 14% of US paddlers, compared to a background level of 4%, according to one study.
Another infection called Leptospirosis and its more severe form, Weil’s disease, are considered to be typical paddling hazards. These infections are often transmitted by infected rats’ urine in the water. The diseases are characterized by jaundice, fever, headaches, muscle aches, rashes and enlargement of the liver and spleen. They can be treated with antibiotics in most cases but sometime they lead to septicemia, organ damage and even death.
Kayakers risk infections of enterovirus and coliform as well.
And obviously, everybody knows that wearing wet clothes can cause skin rash, especially during and after a prolonged physical effort.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that getting wet while kayaking is either unpleasant or hazardous, but it certainly points to the need to offer kayakers means of protection if they don’t want to get wet or come in contact with the water.
Recent research indicates that water in popular subtropical beaches contains staph and MRSA bacteria that may infect open wounds in your skin.
‘Kayaking and kayak fishing are water sports’
Some kayakers and kayak fishermen use the term ‘water sport’ to define kayaking, and by that they mean to say that getting wet is an inseparable part of any kayaking activity, as it is of water skiing, surfing etc.
This approach also implies that the kayaker or kayak angler should not expect to be comfortable in his/her kayak, and that the ‘wet ride’ is inevitable.
This argument is fallacious for a number of reasons:
1. Originally, the native people of the arctic who invented and developed kayaking tried as much as possible to avoid getting wet, and for good reasons.
2. Like kayaking, canoeing is another group of traditional, popular paddle sports and activities, but unless practiced in whitewater it does not involve ‘wet rides’ since most canoes offer a better protection to their passengers than kayaks do.
3. Fishing from other small boats (e.g. dinghies, pirogues etc.) does not involve getting wet as much as kayak fishing does.
4. Considering the efforts different groups of kayakers from sea kayakers to kayak anglers put into avoiding and minimizing the ‘wet ride’ it is obviously a real problem.
What’s causing the wet ride in fishing kayaks?
The general cause is insufficient protection but specific causes vary depending on kayak type and application:
Traditional, or sit-in kayaks (SIKs) have little free-board, so that even paddling in eddies and small waves can result in some water getting inside the kayak through the open cockpit. As for sea kayaks, these are normally equipped with a spray skirt, which doesn’t necessarily make them watertight in surf and waves conditions.
Sit-on-top kayaks (SOTs) offer even less protection than SIKs do in terms of free-board, and typically let water into the cockpit through the drainage holes called ‘scupper holes’. This is why SOTs have become popular only in warm waters.
The wet ride and the dry storage problem
Another aspect of the wet ride is the difficulty to keep gear dry in a kayak. Some seasoned sea kayakers say that before they go on a kayak expedition they simply accept as a fact that eventually all their gear will get wet, even if it’s stored below deck. The solution to that is using watertight bags, which similarly to sea kayaks are not absolutely watertight…
New solutions to the wet ride problem
Since the wet ride is challenging many kayakers’ well being it must be addressed by kayak designers and manufacturers. The solution offered by the new, patented W Kayak concept is simple, and basically consists of more free-board, which protects the passengers inside the cockpit.
W kayakers can also sit change positions on their boat’s longitudinal saddle and sit, ride or stand in the back of the cockpit. By doing so they raise the bow and avoid much of the splashing and spraying that other kayakers are forced to put up with when launching in the surf.
Another good news for kayakers is the fact that even if some water gets into the W Kayak’s cockpit it just gets drained to the bottom of the hulls and away from the passengers’ sitting area on top of the saddle. This eliminates the unpleasant sensation of sitting in a puddle that many people who use ordinary kayaks (SOT and SIK) have to put up with.
Since it’s possible to enter the W Kayak’s from behind and exit it from the front it is no longer necessary for a W Kayakers to step in water when putting their boats in and taking them out.
And finally, since W Kayaks have a big, internal dry storage space it is no longer necessary for the equipment carried on board to get wet.
Kayak fishing is viewed as an extreme sport by most people who fish from more traditional settings, i.e. motorboats and dry land. The factors that make kayak fishing relatively extreme are:
Compared to motorboats, fishing kayaks offer inadequate stability and they basic comfort. In addition, they fail to provide a real storage solution. Fishing kayaks are notoriously unstable, and are extremely uncomfortable, in comparison to motor boats.
The Unfulfilled Promise
Although tens of millions of Americans fish from motorboats, only one in a thousand fish out of a kayak. This is after more than a decade of hype about ‘kayak fishing being the fastest growing outdoors sport in America’. The fishing kayak’s promise was an inexpensive, easy to use, lightweight, car top boat. It also promised to deliver a sporty outdoor experience. The huge majority of US anglers followed neither kayak anglers nor kayak vendors’ hype. The growth in kayak fishing participation is much slower in recent years than it was in the beginning of the century. It is possible that the market matured. This is the result of participants being less enthusiastic, and a high rate of participants dropping out of the sport, which has been typical of kayak fishing since the beginning.
But kayak fishing is very uncomfortable if you’re fishing out of a sit-on-top (SOT) kayak, sit-in kayak, or a hybrid kayak. When you fish out of a W kayak, you experience a comfort that’s equal to that of fishing from a motorboat. Some W kayak fans may say it is more comfy.
The level of stability an angler benefits from when they fish out of a W500 kayak is equal to that offered by a typical small sized motorboat, namely that they don’t have to constantly balance the kayak. Fishing standing up is easy, and can be done with confidence, unlike all other fishing kayaks.
Only the W500 offers sufficient storage space that is dry and accessible, even for long fishing and camping trips that require carrying on board a lot of cumbersome gear that only canoes and small motorboats can carry.
Kayak Fishing In The Future
If kayak fishing has a future, it is not as an extreme sport. Kayak fishing’s future depends on it becoming a popular leisure activity that is comfortable and easy, namely, the future of kayak fishing is W kayak fishing.
Appending a crate to the rear of your fishing kayak’s cockpit has been standard procedure among kayak anglers for years.
When you own a sit on top fishing kayak, attaching a crate rig is usually an unavoidable hassle in order to surmount the lack of available storage space. Because most sit on top fishing kayaks are very similar to paddle boards, storage is limited, and the cockpit room is very small. Sit in kayaks have slightly more space, but lack the amount necessary to make not using a crate a viable option.
So far the only fishing kayak on the market that lacks the need for installation of external storage is called the W Fishing Kayak.
The problems that arise from installing a crate on your kayak are numerous. Strong winds create heavy drag on protruding objects like crates, which is not ideal when you have to paddle back to shore after a long trip. Attaching a crate on a fishing kayak will make you more tired, quicker. Wind creates tracking problems for paddlers. Although the W fishing kayak has better tracking capabilities then typical sit on top and sit in fishing kayak, wind drag is still a problem to consider and its effects on navigation are serious.
The W fishing kayak offers ample room in its spacious hulls, which are located in front of the angler, and are more easily accessed then a rear crate. This problem can be compared to that of whether to put your luggage int the farthest point of your car, or putting it where it is easily accessible, like the trunk or rear passengers seats. The W fishing kayak has about fourteen cubic feet of hull storage, much more than any sit in or sit on top fishing kayak could ever have, and probably more than a kayak angler will ever need.
Storage crates also add the hindrance of increased weight in your fishing kayak. Weight is not a huge issue when paddling, but is a major problem when transporting your fishing kayak to and from your car to the launching point, (which is pretty much anywhere in the W fishing kayak). One may argue that it is not that much weight, but factor in your soreness and fatigue from just spending hours in the water fishing. Car topping your kayak with sore arms will make you hate every extra pound in your fishing kayak.
Almost all sit on top and sit-in fishing kayaks have a deck that is below water level. If you are a salt water kayak angler you want your reels as far away from the corrosive effects of salt water, so you usually put tubular rod holders onto your fishing kayaks crate. These further you from your lines by about an extra foot, causing serious issues when attempting to fish. However, W fishing kayak’s hulls are higher than that of the average fishing kayak, creating the opportunity to store your rods away, safe from harm while launching, further decreasing the need for a mounted crate. W fishing kayaks have the option to be mounted with rod holders on the stern, that swivel in a large range, as well as place your fishing rods high above the water.
By eliminating the need to augment your kayak with a crate, the W kayak saves you time, money, and the hassle of being perpetually weighed down by an unnecessary attachment like a crate.