Blog – Kayak Fishing, Whitewater Kayaking, Canoeing, Family

Hot New Arrivals in Kayak Fishing – Part 1

by Brian Vincent

     We’ve been steady receiving new products and the latest iterations of different kayak models, but I haven’t had the time to highlight them. That time is now. As we sit here poised on the retail edge of 2016, here’s a look at the latest in stock kayak fishing items.

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Feelfree Kayaks Lure 11.5 with Sonar Pod

 This popular SOT fishing kayak just got a make-over. Feelfree added the favored sonar pod from the 13.5 Lure to it’s smaller cousin. Now you can switch the pod with your electronics from your offshore salt kayak to your freshwater kayak. Don’t want to drill into your kayak? No problem, mount your electronics to the pod.

Click here for more info: Feelfree Lure 11.5

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Orion Coolers : 25qt., 45qt. and 65qt.

Orion Coolers are taking over the cooler world. Yes, you’ve seen the other coolers, they are so……, well, you can see the difference. But what might not be so obvious is the geartracs that line the sides of the Orions giving you mounting options, from rod holders to cup holders and anything else that mounts. There are also 4 tie points that double as bottle openers, and a Princeton Tec light included with an internal organizing tray inside the cooler. If you haven’t checked them out, you should. Changing the game.

Click here for more info: Orion Coolers

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Astral Footwear Hiyak

The Astral Hiyak is the MJ bball shoe of the paddling world. It’s baller. They have 1000D CorduraTM Nylon with 1060D ballistic nylon reinforcement rand.  High-top padded ankle protection with semi-rigid heel cup.  3mm quilted spacer mesh lining.  Hidden laces with Velcro Over-flap.  Reflective logo at heel and tongue.  Water resistant laces. High friction, non-marking rubber soles.

Click here for more info: Astral Hiyak shoe.

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Wilderness Systems Airpro 3D Seat

The Wildy Airpro 3D seat is an add-on for the ATAK and adds a fishing perch to an already excellent kayak fishing platform. It folds flat to the hull when not in use and can be reversed and used as a stand assist bar.

Click here for more info: Wildy Airpro 3D Seat

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Diablo Paddlesports

The Diablo Paddlesports line-up is 3 kayaks, the Chuprucabra, the Adios and the Amigo. They are all geared primarily towards the kayak fly angler. I checked these guys out at ICAST 2014 and liked what I saw. We brought them into our retail space and they have been performing very well. These are kayak/sup hybrid boats with big open decks. You can purchase the Larry Chair to go with them or just use a cooler. It’s a great brand and a kayak that definitely has proven itself a performer.

Check here for more info: Diablo Paddlesports

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Tailn Toads SPF Wear

We recently brought in Tailin Toads gloves, face shields and socks. They all provide SPF protection and have that Flo-Rida style to them. Kayak anglers spend a lot of time on the water and in the sun, it’s important to protect your skin. Tailin Toads does that.

Check here for more info: Tailin Toads Gloves, Tailin Toads Sockz, Tailin Toads Shieldz.

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VA Whitewater 1sts, Snakeheads, Summer Kayak Bass Fishing, Merced Madness, Mahi Victory, and Kayak Kevin

by Brian Vincent

Check out all the quality content coming from our community of paddlers, both whitewater kayaking and kayak fishing. Tune in, read up and get psyched. This is the Friday’s Finds, where we seek to highlight some of the paddlers who call Virginia home. PaddleVa is about all of us. While some of the stuff shared in these posts will come from outside our waters, Virginia will always be the primary focus.

First Up:

Gordon Dalton, Pyranha Kayaks Pro, is a long time member of the PaddleVa Family and is always getting after it in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Here is a video of him and a crew of others knocking out a first descent of Upper Tumbling Creek in Va.

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Second Up:

Rob Choi, Ocean Kayak Pro, usually frequents the salt, but when time is tight he’s known to venture into the VA sweetwater as well. Here he, Jeff Lockhart and Matt Anderson find the skinny sweet stuff in Virginia contains a lot of life.

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You can read the full report by clicking here: http://www.angling-addict.com/2015/07/skinny-sweetwater-shenanigans.html

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Third Up:

AJ Morton, a Feelfree Kayaks Pro, out of Northern VA has been getting after the summer bass bite. He put together a nice video with some of the highlights.

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Fourth Up:

Steve Fisher, of Jackson Kayak, is a big name in whitewater and he’s always dreamed of dropping down the Merced River in Yosemite National Park. It has been illegal, until now. Check out Episode 1 of the Merced run.

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Fifth Up:

In Part 1 of  the Extreme Offshore Kayak Fishing miniseries, Robert Field, of Yak Fish TV and Manley Rods, takes his Hobie Outback into the deep blue for bucket list fish. Check out what he found.

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Sixth Up:

Kayak Kevin and Lee Williams, of Ocean Kayak, welcome William Ragulsky, of Hurricane Kayaks, into the studio for Podcast #61. Welcome to the party.

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Kayak Fishing and Good Gear at ICAST in Orlando, FL – Part 2

by Brian Vincent

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Yesterday I posted my first in a series of ICAST posts. ICAST is the largest sportfishing tradeshow around. Because there is so much to see there, I’ve started these posts by just doing an overview of what I saw. Later I will go more in-depth with products that are due to arrive in our stores soon. My ICAST recap Part 1 left off with some new Astral offerings. I closed out with a mention of their new sandal line for 2016. They also had a waist belt inflatable PFD in the works that looked pretty good.

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Over at the Jackson Kayak booth, they had some new Orion Cooler colors that looked pretty slick. Orion Coolers have been building some serious momentum in the fishing and hunting industry.

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Jackson Kayak had a RealTree Camo Kilroy and Cuda LT in the booth. Both of these looked great.

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Jackson also debuted the new angling kayak for kids, the Skipper. Jackson Kayak consistently innovates in the kid’s kayak category. Proof that they believe in growing the next generation of paddlers.

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Pelican International displayed their newest fishing kayak, the Catch 120. This camp chair seating, standing platform kayak looks to be a solid offering from Pelican. The flame one in the front is the standard option and should retail around $750 and the Angler specific one, in the back, comes in around $899.

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I stopped in at the Diablo Paddlesports booth and saw the Sea Dek padded Chupacabra. The guys had also constructed an aluminum frame that connects to the tracks on your kayak to create a catamaran party barge with a 10 horsepower torqueedo motor. The preliminary name is El Gato.

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The Old Town Canoe & Kayak booth had last year’s Best In Show winner, the Predator Minn Kota, in the front of the booth, but I spied a little gem in the background. The Loon Angler is a new sit-inside offering and it looks good.

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The boys at Viking Kayaks/ Yak Gear showed off their Pro Model Viking ProFish Reload with Bocagrips, Truth reel and more. It was a sweet package set-up.

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Speaking of Truth Reels, the Virginia crew had it going on. The booth looked great!

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I visited the Eddyline Kayaks booth to peek again at the C 135 Stratofisher. The C135 Yak Attack Edition, comes with a custom BlackPak and many more goodies, won Best Boat and Best in Show at this year’s ICAST. Pretty cool for this first time exhibitor. This was the second year in a row that a kayak won Best in Show. Kayak Fishing is making waves.

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ICAST is a fisherman/ gear junkies paradise. It’s the next best thing to catching fish. This was my second year at ICAST and it’s cool to see kayak fishing garnering so much attention. Everywhere you turn at this event people are talking about it. I had a couple of professional bass anglers come up and talk about getting into a kayak, and ask for advice.

It’s an amazing time in kayak angling. This growth will come with some pain, we see it already, but if anything, ICAST reminds me that we’re all in this big roller-coaster ride together. Kayak fishing will branch out into little subsets. People will have different ideas about what’s good and what’s bad. It’s ok. You don’t have to like everything. And you don’t have to complain about anything. All you have to do is remember to have some fun. That is the draw. That’s why we all got into this lifestyle, and that pursuit of fun is what’s driving this growth.

I had a blast hanging with the tribe in Orlando. We’re all a big family and it was good to reconnect and meet up with so many from across the country.

I’ll post the rest of my ICAST photos on our Facebook page later today. And in the coming weeks I’ll highlight certain things I’ve over-viewed in these posts and go a little more in-depth on them.

Kayak Fishing and Good Gear at ICAST in Orlando, Florida – Part 1

by Brian Vincent

Have you ever seen a 5-10 year old in the week leading up to a Disney World trip? That’s me as ICAST draws near. I have a hard time containing my psyche. This year was no different, and the psyche was warranted. What a great show! ICAST is the annual trade show for the fishing industry and took place July 15-17 in Orlando, Fla. The show is not open to the public, but rather is an industry event for retailers, exhibitors and members of the media. It’s basically a new gear showcase, a fishing industry brainstorming session, and a media hype fest.

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ICAST is billed as the largest sportfishing tradeshow around, and kayak fishing has started to make major waves within it’s halls. As you cruise the Orange County Convention Center it becomes increasingly clear that kayak fishing is here to stay, and grow. The sportfishing industry generated 53.5 billion dollars in 2014. Kayak anglers currently account for 7-12% of all anglers. Most anglers fish from land, and many from boats. What does that tell us? Kayak fishing has a lot of room for growth. It’s happening.

Here’s a shot of the Jackson Kayak / Orion Cooler booth drawing a lot of attention. Jackson Kayak continually strives to be in the forefront of this burgeoning industry and their push into coolers is indicative of that drive.

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But I’m getting ahead of myself. I cruised down to Florida a day early and fished Monday morning in the Indian River Lagoon near Titusville. I hooked a juvenile tarpon at a creek mouth, watched in excitement as it leapt about, and then had it spit the hook 3 ft from the kayak.

After that tragedy I spooked some shallow reds with my terrible fly casting and then hooked on the smallest catfish in the lagoon on a popping cork. The face says it all.

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That evening I ventured over to the Banana River and a cove in which I’d hooked and lost a snook last year. After an hour of nothing, I started to feel discouraged. Why was nothing biting? Then I spotted two dolphin frolicking, four manatee stampeded past, and this guy popped up 5ft off my bow.

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So I resigned to watching the sunset with my scaled friend and headed for some sleep before the first ICAST On The Water demo. Tuesday I awoke and drove to Lake Toho in Orlando for the demo. It was a pretty sweet location.

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I took the chance to paddle the latest Eddyline Kayak, the C 135 Stratofisher. I liked it immediately. I gushed online and even texted my wife, this kayak was pretty sweet! I found the C 135 to have that usual Eddyline buttery feel in the water, the Cloud framed seat was comfy and the open deck provided a very stable platform for standing.

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After the Demo it was New Product Showcase time at ICAST in the convention center. Due to the strict adherence of the media only photography rules, and because a lady in uniform shook her head at me when I tried to snap some cell phone pics, I refrained from going all paparazzi on Tuesday afternoon.

But the next day it was on. Here are some of the cool things kayak fishing related that I came across.

The Hobie Outback Limited Edition. Word is they will only be making 500 of these kayaks to celebrate 15 years of Outback goodness. We should get our hands on some, and they will be a hot item. Good marketing idea by Hobie Fishing and the kayak looks great!

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Next I saw the Native Watercraft Ultimate Propel with a slick wrap job. This beauty was stunning.

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It featured a new tackle storage system that looked very promising as well.

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Another hot item on the floor was the Torqueedo motor for the Wilderness Systems ATAK. The hype train has been chugging along in the week lead up to ICAST and folks were psyched to see what all the fuss was about. It looked pretty good. Are you ready to go farther and faster?

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What really got my attention in the Confluence booth though was the Perception Pescador Pro 120. The price on this is rumored to be around $899 and I believe this kayak will be a real winner.

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I hopped over to the NRS booth and checked out their new line of kayak fishing specific clothing. The line looks good and everything had a nice feel to it. Stay tuned for this category because it will be a hot one. Kayak fisherman need quality clothing for all day adventure.

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Feelfree Kayaks was next. These boys are always innovating. They added an electronics pod to the Lure 11.5, started making coolers, added a stand assist bar, and debuted a prototype non-electric anchor pole kit dubbed the “Po Kit.” The color coordination of their product line continues to impress.

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I visited Astral Fishing’s booth next. The crew from Asheville has been busy.  The debuted the Realtree Ronny Fisher, the Murica Brewers, and a host of other cool colors for their footwear. They also revealed their sandal line-up which grabbed a lot of attention.

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ICAST is a whirlwind of cool stuff. I’ll post a Part 2 tomorrow featuring more great new products. ICAST can be overwhelming and so with these first two photo blogs I’m just seeking to highlight, with overviews, all the things I saw. Later, in subsequent postings I’ll narrow down and individually review some of the things you can expect to see in our stores for Fall 2015 and the 2016 season.

Southeast Whitewater, YakAngler TV, Sailfish Smackdown, Paddling Buddies, Billy’s Kayak Fishing Tips and Kevin’s Fla Tour

by Brian Vincent

Check out all the quality content coming from our community of paddlers, both whitewater kayaking and kayak fishing. Tune in, read up and get psyched. This is the Friday’s Finds, where we seek to highlight some of the paddlers who call Virginia home. PaddleVa is about all of us. While some of the stuff shared in these posts will come from outside our waters, Virginia will always be the primary focus.

First Up:

Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine posted a great overview of the Best Rapids at each level in the southeast. If whitewater kayaking is your gig, check this list out. What do you think, did they miss anything? Click the link below the image for the full story.

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Get the full story here: http://www.blueridgeoutdoors.com/paddling/head-of-the-class-best-rapids-for-every-level/

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Second Up:

Jameson Redding, Jackson Kayak/ Bending Branches/ Astral Pro, is putting together a little web show with YakAngler and the Intro look very promising. Check it out and stay tuned.

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Third Up:

Christina Weber, Hobie Fishing and Astral Pro, is based out of Florida and recently hit up the Extreme Kayak Fishing Tournament Summer Slam Part 1. This is a video of her battling a sailfish. Pretty damn exciting and definitely on my bucket list. Check it out.

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Fourth Up:

Jess Daddio is the BRO Magazine travel editor and has been sharing her journey on the road through Live Outside and Play. She puts down some good stuff. Click the link following the photo for her recent story about having “bad influencers” in your life. Hint, it’s important.

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Click here for the full story: http://blueridgeoutdoors.com/loap/friends-like-these/

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Fifth Up:

William Ragulsky, Hurricane Kayaks, Werner Paddles, Astral Pro, recently put together a must have list for kayak anglers and it is done with his usual thoroughness. Click the link below the photo for the full list. What’s on yours?

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Click the following link for the full story: http://coastalkayakfishing.blogspot.com/2015/06/kayak-fishing-top-10-must-haves.html

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Sixth Up:

Kayak Kevin, Ocean Kayak, Aqua Bound Pro, has been celebrating the 10th anniversary of his Florida tour with video podcasts. These are excellent resources for those more adventurous souls. Check out the Everglades episode here.

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