After Leaving Lake Shasta we headed down to Clear Lake to meet up with my friends Sean White and Terry Gowen. Terry lives at the late and was our gracious host for a couple days.
The water in the lake was very cold and though we tossed a lot of lures we just were not getting bites. The first day on the lake was nice for about an hour but the wind kicked in and made things tough for us, well for most of us. Sean still managed to keep the fish biting while soaking minnows.
When the wind came up too strong it was nice to have a nice little bar and grill right at our take out to enjoy some grub while waiting for the evening glass off.
The evening glass off came late but the fishing was more productive and we all managed to pull in some nice fish.
Day two on Clear Lake was dead calm and the bite much better, you can see how this lake has such a great reputation for big bass. Just to up our odds Terry worked on the karma points by also doing a little lake clean up.
We had two great days at Clear Lake with Sean and Terry and had one more day left to fish on our CA Road Trip. We headed a bit further south to Lodi California to fish the Delta with Bam Miller.
Fishing the Delta was a bit different from the lakes we had been fishing, this was more overgrown canals. Though the fishing was really slow it was a great place to paddle and we saw a ton of wild life. We managed a few fish each, made a new friend and got to fish a new area, I call that a success
We had a great day on the water on the Delta but it was about time to head home.
We drove about two thousand miles on the trip and had a wonderful time. I can’t thank the guys enough that helped us out on the trip. I cant wait to come up and fish with you all again. Perhaps not during a drought next time. Still want to get on the rivers after the steal head.
Because we had to cancel a couple shoots this year due to some bad weather at the planned locations we decided to hit the road in my home state of California to visit and fish with some friends and teammates at the northern end of the state.
On the first day of the trip we stopped at Liquipel to get an introduction to their product and get some of our gear treated. For those of you that have not heard of Liquipel it is a micro coating that can be used on many items including electronics to protect it from water. Here is a little sample video from their site.
Not only do they have this coating but also have skins to protect your phone screen from damage. We dropped a large ball bearing on the screen of a phone and had no damage. I see this a perhaps a great addition to a fish finder screen. They even had a treatment for fabric that has huge potential to us paddlers.
After our tour of Liquipel it was back on the road for a quick stop in Santa Barbara to visit an old friend for lunch then the long haul up to Shasta Lake. All told we had a 17 hour day to get to our most northern location for the trip. Thanks goodness for truck stop coffee, Dukes beef jerky and Bigs sunflower seeds.
At Shasta Lake we were hosted by my Jackson Kayak fishing teammate Jeff Baker. Our initial plan was to spend a day drifting and fishing the Sacramento river and half a day fishing Lake Shasta but as always plans are subject to change. Our normal issue on trips is we tend to get followed by rain, but not on this trip. Just so happens we decided to go fishing during the worst drought California has seen in years. Because of this there simply was not enough water to drift the river, so we spent our first day on Lake Shasta. Now Shasta does have pretty big fluctuations in water level anyway but as you can see in the picture below it was beyond low on our visit.
We set up to troll for trout and had a second rod for tossing lures for bass. The trolling set up was a dodger above a small hoochie which gave off a really good flash and action at paddling speed. The wind came up pretty early so we ducked into cover when we could tossing lures hoping for bass in the frigid 46 degree water. I decided to throw a small Sebile magic swimmer soft as I could fish it weedless around the heavy structure. Well of course while fishing for bass I manage to catch a trout on the magic swimmer. These lures will catch anything. That trout was the only fish we managed to catch that day as the wind really came up hard and pushed us off the water. I didn’t even get a photo of the fish because the slimy bugger slipped out of my hands before we got the camera out.
Lake Shasta is a man made lake so there are a lot of submerged trees and even a submerged town in the lake. With my Raymarine Dragonfly fishfinder I was able to get some screen grabs that really show off the structure. It was pretty amazing the detail I got from this unit.
Because we were off the water fairly early we decided to stop by Headwaters, the kayak shop that Jeff works at to get a look at their line of Jackson kayaks as well as a closer look at the new Jackson Big Rig.
The next day we hit up another lake in the Shasta Lake area and had much better luck, as least as far as the wind and weather goes. We tried the same routine trolling for trout and casting for bass but this day I had no luck at all while Jeff landed several trout and a Pikeminnow, which I had never seen before.
After about five hours on the water we loaded up the truck and headed to Clearlake to fish with my friends Sean White and Terry Gowan, but I will save that story for the next installment.
Huge thanks to Jeff, his wife and their lovely daughter for hosting us and for letting us crash at their house. I hope I can return the favor if the come to San Diego.
I have a habit of looking at any container that could fit on the back of my kayak and figuring out if it would make a good bait tank. Well Jackson Kayak made an awesome container called the JKrate to fit on the back of their kayaks and the guys at OEX Kayaks in San Diego helped me turn it into an awesome bait tank.
The first step is placing the Jkrate in the back of the intended kayak and figure out the orientation that you will need to use.
Once that if figured you may need to remove the side handles and relocate to the other sides, this is easy as the JKrate has inserts in the plastic to screw into.
The next step for me was to rearrange the bungee that secures the lid, when new there is a lot of excess bungee that allows the lid to come a long way off, I wanted to keep the lid tighter. So a couple loops on one end and another on the other side to hold it down and it was done.
The next step was to add the three position rod holder to the back, I like them so the top of the rod holder is just above the lid, you also need to make sure that the holes don’t hit the inserts in the tank.
Next we attached the small Pelican case which will hold the 6v 12amp battery and the power switch. Before attaching to the JKrate you will need to drill it out for the waterproof switch, and waterproof wire connector. You will also drill two holes to match the inserts in the tank as that is what you will you to attach the case to the tank.
You will need to drill three larger holes in the tank next, one for the adjustable spray head, one for the upper overflow and one for the drain. The height of the overflow will determine the amount of water you carry so you can put it as high or low as you wish, depending how much weight you want to carry or the size of your bait.
Now we attach the hose and bilge pump, I like to run the wires for the pump up inside the hose this has a much cleaner look and avoids the use of zip ties.
Run your wires from the switch through the water tight connector and hook it up and you are almost done.
I decided to add a couple more single rod holders to the sides of the tank, one for holding my gaff and one for holding a bait net.
Here is a look at how the battery fits in the Pelican case
Marine Goop was used on all connections and holes to keep things as water tight as possible.
The build took about an hour to complete.
And here you have a few shots of the finished product.
I can’t thank the guys at OEX Kayaks and Kayak Fishing Supplies enough for their help with this project.
Here is a list of the parts we used for the bait tank prodject, all of which are available at Kayak Fishing Supplies.
Power: 6 Volt 12 AMP battery
Case: Pelican 1060 solid waterproof case
Switch: Cole Herse waterproof toggle switch with boot cover
Pump: Rule 360GPH
-Wire seal on Battery Box
-16G marine grade wire
-Adjustable aerator intake fitting
-1 1/2″ overflow strainer fitting
-3 rod rack system
-2 single stage rod holders
-polyethylene wrapped bungee
-3/4″ tubbing with SS hose clamp (2)
-1 1/12″ hose (1)
-SS nuts and bolts
- coleman cooler drain
Having worked in the kayak fishing industry for over 20 years I have heard just about every question people can think of about the sport. Whether it is at a trade show, during a trip, or on the internet people come up with many of the same questions. I thought this would be a good place to answers some of the more common questions I hear.
Is kayak fishing fun?
It is more fun than I can describe, everything from catching your first small fish from a kayak to getting towed out to sea by a marlin is a blast. Getting off the bank on your own kayak and going where you want under your own power is like nothing else. The great thing is I have yet to meet someone who couldn’t do it and everyone who tries becomes an addict like me. If you want to see more reasons why I think kayak fishing is fun, watch this video. Why I Fish
What is the best kayak for me?
I could tell you the Jackson Kayak Cuda 14 that I am currently using is the perfect kayak. In reality, there is no perfect kayak for everyone. Think of it like shoes, there is no one shoe that fits every person, and there is no one kayak that every person is comfortable in. The best thing you can do is to ask some questions from people already involved in the sport; you can do this on one of the kayak fishing web sites. Give them your height, weight, what you plan on fishing for, what kind of water you plan on paddling, plus any other pertinent info such as storage limitations. You likely will be given several kayaks, from different manufacturers, from which to choose. Find the shops in your area that stock these kayaks to demo, and take them for a test paddle. If you can take the kayak out on a day when the water is a bit choppy you will get a better idea of its performance. You will then be able to make an educated decision on which is the correct kayak for you.
Are these kayaks stable?
Don’t over estimate the importance of stability, sure you don’t want to feel like you are in a fight to stay upright all day but you also don’t want to feel you are trying to paddle the dock out to sea. The learning curve for feeling stable in a kayak is rather short, you will learn to be stable but you cannot make a slow boat fast. The short answer is this; yes, even the kayaks that are considered tippy, are stable, if you take the time to learn the how to be a good paddler. If you are looking for ultra-stability for stand up fishing, kayaks with that feature are also available, take a look at the new Jackson Kayak BIG RIG, you can stand up and dance on that baby. If you want to go the fast kayak route but still want stability to stand from time to time you can even add stabilizers that can be added or removed whenever needed.
Do you have a kayak big enough for me?
The average kayak fisherman is actually a fairly large person and the kayak manufactures have addressed this with a variety of kayaks that will fit persons of all sizes, see the Big Rig mentioned above if you doubt me.
Do you prefer a longer or shorter kayak?
The longer the kayak the better it glides through the water, so the less effort I have to put out to move the kayak through the water. Think of it this way, have you ever pedaled a bike with low air in the tires, then gone to the gas station and filled those tires up? That is what it feels like to go from a short kayak to a long one. You can still get there on the bike with low tires, but it is a lot easier once those tires are pumped up. So for the longer distance paddling I tend to do I prefer a longer kayak, now when hitting smaller lakes or running some rapids a shorter kayak like the Jackson Coosa is a better choice.
I see there are a couple pedal kayaks out there why do you still paddle?
The answer to this would be multifold the first part being that I just really enjoy and prefer paddling. While pedaling employs your legs, paddling, when done properly involves your entire body. I also like the simplicity of paddling, having no mechanism to maintain or that could potentially break while on the water. I also like to fish in and around the thick kelp beds which my paddle kayak will glide right over and when fishing in amongst the rocks on the inside or while gliding down rivers I don’t have to worry about hitting a rock and breaking anything. I also do a lot of launching through the surf and the paddle boats just seem to do that better. Many of the pedal boats are much heavier, which with my bad back is a major issue, and cost a lot more, which with my empty wallet is also an issue. I will say this, paddling does take a certain amount of skill that the pedal boats don’t require. No this is not rocket science but a little technique goes a long way and taking a paddling class will really help you improve your skills and add to your enjoyment on the water. To be clear, there is nothing wrong with the pedal boats and they make fine products but for what I like to do and my style I prefer to paddle.
Should I spend the money on a Carbon Fiber paddle?
You will find paddles ranging in price from $49 to $500, with the carbon fibers starting around $200. Your paddle is your motor and I generally tell people to get the best motor they can afford. Would you rather have a Porsche motor or a Volkswagen motor? Carbon fiber paddles are lighter and stronger than lower cost paddles, so like the faster kayak, with the lighter paddle I will have to work less to move my boat through the water, all, day, long. I have been using a Werner Kaliste paddle for a few years now and there is nothing like it.
What do you do if a fish starts to pull you out to sea?
Sit back and enjoy the ride, and what a fun ride it is!
Watch this video of one of my clients in Baja for a great example of what it is like to go for a sleigh ride in a Cuda 14!!
Baja Sleigh Ride
What happens if you catch a big fish, do they ever pull you off your kayak?
As far as I am concerned, the bigger the better, I love big game kayak fishing. If your drags are set properly there is no reason a fish would ever pull you off your kayak. If you do make a mistake and fall off your kayak, make sure you are wearing your PFD and have a cut away tool on your vest.
Do you ever tip over and what do you do if it happens?
People generally fall off the kayaks because they forget one basic rule, where your head goes your body will follow. You should always keep your head down the centerline of the kayak, letting the kayak move under you. You should also know how to do a self-rescue, and practice it. The last thing you want to happen is to fall off your kayak a mile from the beach and realize you do not know how to get back on. Here is an article on doing a self rescue, read it then go practice.
Where do you put the fish that you catch?
We practice a lot of catch and release but I do like to keep fish for the dinner table. When I am keeping fish, I want to keep them as fresh as possible, so I have an insulated game bag that fits into the center hatch of my Cuda 14. I can keep my fish inside the kayak on ice. The other options would be a divers game clip or a gunnysack. I do not recommend hanging the fish off the side of the kayak, as this is just an invitation to unwanted guests.
Aren’t you afraid of sharks?
I have a healthy respect for sharks but I would not say I have a fear of them. I have had instances where sharks have taken fish while on my line as well as out of my hand as you can see in this video. If you are in a sharky area you certainly do not want to have fish hanging off the side of your kayak and I would think twice about bleeding my catch. It is also a good idea to keep your feet aboard your kayak in sharky areas. If you tend to fish in areas what have a lot of shark activity an investment in a Shark Shield, an electronic shark deterrent, is a good idea. I have used this product and can tell you first hand that it works. Check out this video of the Shark Shield in Action.
Can you fly fish from the kayak?
People fly fish out of float tubes all the time; a kayak is an even better platform. Fly-fishing off the kayaks has become a large part of the sport. With the stand-up ability you have on the Jackson Cuda and Big Rig fly fishing is a natural.
Where do you keep the beer?
There is room for everything including the kitchen sink on most of the fishing kayak on the market, so I am sure you will find room for your beverage of choice. Do remember this, in a kayak you do have to paddle back from where ever you are, and alcohol is a depressant and can make you tired and a bit lazy. I prefer to have my cold ones as I am cleaning my gear at home. You may also want to check the regulations for your area, I know some places don’t allow drinking on the water.
Is it hard to sit in a kayak all day if you have a bad back?
In the past I would have answered this question with yes but that was before the insanely comfortable seats on the Jackson kayaks came out. If you can sit in a lounge chair next to the pool, you can sit in one of these kayaks. On a sit on top kayak you can move all over the deck and even sit sideways when you need a change of position, which really lessons the strain on the back. Start with short days on the water and build up to the all day excursions, so that your muscles have a chance to get in shape for this activity.
What if you have to go to the bathroom?
Lets just say, yes you can, and let you figure it out from there.
Can I put a motor on my kayak?
Not if you are fishing with me, but if you must, search the web and you will find directions on how to do it.
Should I get a tandem or a single kayak?
If you are talking about two adults, get singles you will be much happier. If you will be taking your child out with you, the tandem is a great way to get them on the water. If your spouse says, “if you get a kayak you have to get one that I can go on with you”, think long and hard about the percentage of time your spouse will actually go. If you will be paddling the tandem as a single more than 50% of the time, I suggest getting a good single and renting the tandem for those times when your spouse goes out with you. Of course, you could always get both. Another option is a tandem like the Jackson Big Tuna. This kayak is big enough for two but easily switches to a single.
Why do you carry so many rods?
Just like any boat fisherman I want to have a rod ready for any type of fishing I may do that day, so I carry five to six rod with me on my kayak. The kayaks on the market today have plenty of storage so it is not really an issue.
Can you keep bait alive in a kayak?
I have a live bait system on my kayak and will always have bait soaking in the water, even when I am tossing jigs. You can keep bait in anything from a Plano bait sled, a bait tube or if you want to hold a larger quantity of bait, a live bait tank. You can purchase a custom bait tank for your kayak or make your own. My friends at OEX have turned the JKrate into a great custom bait tank.
Do you wear a wetsuit when it is cold?
I am not a big fan of wetsuits; they are a bit confining and can get too cold if it is windy and too hot when the sun is out. I prefer actual paddling clothing such as dry pants and paddle jackets. These will keep you dry, warm, keep the wind out and are easy to peel off when it gets warm. Lightweight breathable waders are my go to clothing when it gets chilly and for the coldest environments a dry suit may be the best option. Kokatat makes some of the best paddling clothing available see what they have to offer for your style of fishing and conditions.
Should I take a class?
I have found the biggest problem with kayak fishermen is that they are fisherman first and kayakers a distant second. They never seem to want to learn to be a good paddler, which is a mistake because it would make them a better kayak fisherman. In my opinion you should at least take a class to learn to paddle correctly, how to self and assisted rescue and how to navigate the surf zone. An all day class with a guide will also help decrease the learning curve when it comes to kayak rigging and fishing techniques specific to kayaks and your area.
Do I need to register my kayak?
In California, you only need to register your kayak if you put a motor on it. You will need to check by state what the requirements are.
Do I need a PFD on my kayak?
Legally you must carry a Personal Floatation Device (PFD) on your kayak, children are required to wear it. A PFD will do you no good when you need it if it is tucked down inside your hull. Get a PFD designed for paddling and wear it at all times for your own safety. The best quote I have heard on this came from a coast guard officer I was chatting with. “We never find dead bodies wearing PFD’s”!
Can I put a fish finder on my kayak?
Most of the people that kayak fish a lot have a full spread of electronics on their kayaks, including fish finders, GPS and VHF radios. You can even put a waterproof stereo on your kayak if that is your thing. Be aware though that salt water and electronics do not get along and special care is needed if you want this equipment to last. Take a look at the Raymarine Dragonfly fish finder this thing is perfect for the kayak.
Where should I place my rod holders?
There is no right or wrong way to rig your kayak; some people want their rods in front some in back. Take your time setting up your kayak so you get it done right the first time. My kayak has ten rod holders on it, so I can place rods in different places for different situations. Take a look at some of the great options on rigging your kayak from Yakattack and Ram mounts over at Hook1 kayak fishing gear.
Am I going to get wet?
This is a water sport and you will get wet, on some kayaks more than others. If you do not want to get wet, you are looking into the wrong sport.
What is the best color?
This is really a personal choice, if you want to be seen you should get the brightest colored kayaks such as yellow, orange, or lime green. I on the other hand prefer the duller colors like grey, olive green and blue-grey.
This is just a sampling of the questions that I hear about this sport on a regular basis, I am sure you can come up with some more. Of course, these answers are only my personal opinions, and I am sure if you asked someone else, you would get different answers. If you come up with more questions please feel free to post them on our Kayak Fishing Show Facebook Page or send them directly to me at Jim@Kayak4Fish.com I am always happy to help.
Several months ago we were invited to visit Puerto Rico by Captain Omar Orraca of Caribbean Outfitters and the Tarpon Nest Lodge. I had many conversations with Omar about the best time to come for our target species of Tarpon and hopefully some offshore fishing as well.
I was very pleased to have my wife Allene along on this trip, she has wanted to visit Puerto Rico for some time, and my good fishing buddy Jeff Birdsnest Herman. Because of the twelve hours of travel involved with getting to PR from San Diego my wife and I decided to arrive a day early so that I could have a full day to get the kayaks and fishing gear all rigged up in a more leisurely pace. Though only ten minutes from the airport, finding the Tarpon Nest at 10:30 pm was not easy, the directions on Google maps were vague to say the least, add in the rain and the ever fogged windshield of the rental car and we had a challenge.
Arriving at the lodge at 11:30 at night we were greeted by Nick, Omars deck hand, who grabbed an arm load of gear and showed us to our room. The room was spacious and very nicely decorated, and even had rod/paddle holders on the wall.
The Tarpon Nest lodge is located just outside San Juan and as mentioned is only ten minutes from the airport, once you know where you are going. A short walk through the neighborhood brings you to a small town with anything from street food to nice restaurants. The Lodge has a private dock and you can be fishing within minutes of pulling away. They also have a large fleet of kayaks for anyone that visits.
The kayaks arrived nicely packaged and in great shape, one of the many great things about the Jackson Kayaks is that they arrive ready to fish, no real rigging is required other than some personal touches and a lot of stickers.
Though we had planned this trip around the perfect tides to make for the best fishing, what we couldn’t plan on was an algae bloom occurring just before we arrived which had killed off much of the bait in the area. Though we worked our tails off we had a long tough week of fishing. We saw lots of fish but they always seemed to be on the move with a major case of lock jaw. Our backup plan to fish offshore was also thwarted by strong winds and a swell that wouldn’t allowed boats out of the harbor.
Getting a bit frustrated with the lack of bites, Jeff and I downsized our gear and had some fun with the plentiful though mostly small Snook. I was also able to add a couple new fish to my species list which now sits at 118.
By the fourth day of fishing you could say frustrations were HIGH as we had still not had a single bite from our target species. We tried everything, live bait, dead bait and all variety of lures, it just was not happening for us. We were all getting pretty upset as we knew we only had two days left to shoot and at this point still didn’t have enough footage for an episode. You might say tempers were very near the surface for all of us just from the stress of it. Omar is so confident in his fishery that he has a guarantee of fish so this many days without a bite has him on edge along with the rest of us, which never really helps you fish better. Thankfully things were about the change.
Omar left us fishing in an area and ran around in his boat trying to scout out some fish. He gave us a shout that an area looked promising and we headed over to give it a shot. Of course we got there and it looked like the dead sea which made for a rather comical emotional outburst. I think the fish heard our desperation and decided to give us a little taste of what was there. We had picked up a few live baits and decided to troll them around the bay, I was the first one hit but that is all it was a hit and miss that stole my bait. I then put on another very large mullet that I got to watch the Tarpon kick the crap out of but never eat, but at least we were finally on fish that were being active. A few minutes later I look across the bay and see Jeff getting towed across the water with a leaping Tarpon off his bow. Unfortunately our luck was staying about the same as his fish also came unbuttoned. Not long after this the skies opened up on us and we were in a torrential downpour. We decided it was a good time to go in for lunch.
At least we had finally had a few bites and were fired up to get back on the water for an evening session. We saw a lot more fish rolling this afternoon but again they seemed to be lock jawed. Omar decided that our best bet was to fish the dead bait, which meant anchoring up in position and waiting for a bite, not something I am very good at. With one hour left our patience paid off, at least for Jeff any way. He hooked up and this time it stuck and he was off to the races.
The last day of the trip started much like the rest, up at 5:30 and on the water by 6:00. We went to the same spot that Jeff caught his fish the day before and set up with anchors and dead bait. The camera boat also had lines in the water and as fate would have it, they get a double hookup. ARE YOU FN KIDDING ME, I am only about a hundred feet away from them and they have to get a double and I am still waiting for my first hookup of the trip. I just sat in my kayak and enjoyed watching Omar fight the big fish, refusing the offer of the rod. I just can’t take a hand off fish. The fish did make some great jumps and I am sure the guys got some wonderful video of it. Both fish eventually came unhooked.
Although at this point I have not landed a fish and my frustration level is through the roof I try to just relax and if nothing else enjoy the awesome scenery. I mean it is not every day I get to paddle in the mangroves, see manatees, huge iguanas, and amazing bird life.
With the standard afternoon rain coming through it was time to head in for the always delicious lunch made by Jorge back at the Tarpon Nest.
Back on the water for our last session of the trip and I must admit my hopes were as low as can be. I just had the feeling that this was just not my trip. We worked a couple areas with no luck and still not a bit for me. With maybe an hour left to fish, Jeff paddled over to me and we just sat side by side soaking our baits and chatted about the trip and how the clock was winding down and it just wasn’t going to happen for me this time. We talked about what a great place this is and we have to come back for redemption because we know the fish are there. We talked about how nice the Tarpon nest and how nice our host Omar II at the hotel has been. We talked about how hard Omar and Nick had worked all week to get us on fish and it just wasn’t meant to be this time but that we had made new lifelong friends. And we talked about all the bugs that were starting to eat us alive as the sun was starting to go down and perhaps it was time to pull the plug.
And that is when it happened. My line started to peel off my reel at blazing speed. I tossed the reel in gear and the rod loaded up.
Now I have caught thousands of fish in my life and plenty of big ones but this one seriously had me shaking. I was so excited, relieved, amazed and scared to death it would come off. Of course I get the only tarpon that doesn’t do a single jump so not so good for the video or still shots but it also gave me a better chance of landing the fish. I did get another scare when the fish headed right for a manatee buoy and threaten to wrap me around it. Once I had the fish close I was setting up to land it I also had to deal with the hook in the middle of the lower jaw, right where I would need to grab it. Even with these problems I was able to solo land the fish and get the monkey off my back. A fish that because we had to work so hard for it will make an even better memory.
Our last night celebration was so much better because of that fish. A tough trip was made so much better by the great group we had with us. Huge thanks to Omar at Caribbean Outfitters for setting it all up and being such a great guide and working so hard.
Our crew, including my wife Allene, Will Richardson, Kelsey Thompson and Jeff Herman worked our tails off and did our best to stay positive and have fun on a tough trip. Thanks Nick for all your work on the boat and thanks to OmarII the manager of the Tarpon nest for being such a great host at the hotel.
We have just returned from my home away from home Rancho Leonero on Baja’s East Cape. The first week of the trip was one the guided trips I run down here each year and the second part of the trip was to shoot an episode of my show.
On the guided trip we had a group of anglers that were dedicated to catching big game fish only, which, when you move up the food chain, means less action. Everyone on the trip understood this but stuck to their guns of only targeting big game and to leave the little fish alone. Targeting these big fish also means hours of paddling, trolling live baits in the hopes of a hookup. The goal was to catch Marlin with the possible by catch of tuna and dorado.
We had fairly rough seas and a real mix of weather, from rain and wind to blazing sun but everyone stayed on task. The results of their dedication paid out with six marlin hooked and three landed plus several dorado and skipjack.
After the clients left it was my turn to fish and shoot some video for the show. My videographer Will Richardson, second camera Kelsey Thompson and Yakattacks Luther Cifers arrived to shoot with Sean and I.
The first afternoon was spent rigging up the new Jackson Cuda 14′s with Yakattack gear, and a couple cold Pacificos were consumed in the process.
Our plan on the trip was the same as my guided trip, Go Big or Go Home.
Though the fishing was not great we landed two Marlin and a bunch of dorado, which we had cooked up for us for dinner, and packed up some to bring home.
I got to return the favor helping Sean land his fish the next day.
I never get tired of visiting and fishing at Rancho Leonero and fishing with my good friend and boat captain Alonso Castro Mackliz.
If interested in joining me on one of my yearly trips to the East Cape please look me up at
People often ask me about how we get the point of view shots on our show, what kind of camera we use, and how we mount it on our Jackson Kayaks. For the past couple years we have been using the V.I.O POV camera because we feel it gives us better shot control and higher quality over other cameras available at this time. The V.I.O is also water tight and rugged enough to handle the abuse of kayak fishing.
Some of the other features that really appeal to us on this camera are;
An external waterproof microphone which picks up much better sound than anything else available from other onboard mics.
The POV Power which allows us to hook up the camera to an external battery so that we can run the camera all day without fear of running out of power when we need it most.
A wrist worn remote control which makes starting and stopping recording on the fly as simple as can be.
A recording looping function which means we can set the camera to record in a constant loop, only saving it when needed. This means we will never miss that shot of the fish hitting our baits.