Kayak fishing in USA
Top Destinations for Kayak Fishing in the USA
Kayak and fishing. Two different hobbies which perfectly combines in one – kayak fishing. We have created a map with the most delicious fish types and their locations. So grab your kayaks and go fishing!
Here is the detailed PDF version of the map. You can download or view it on full screen.
If you want to get out into the world and explore nature, then there’s no better way to do it than kayaking. It tests your upper body, tones your core, and allows you to get plenty of fresh air. Once you find a tranquil spot, it can be nice to sit and take in your surroundings. In fact, kayak fishing in the USA is proving to be an increasingly popular hobby for fishermen of all abilities.
By coordinating your body to control the kayak while fishing, you can enjoy a uniquely satisfying pastime. Not only that, but it gives you something to take home with you and cook up with your family after a day on the water. With the USA offering such vast expanses of relatively untouched waters there’s perhaps, no, a better place to try it. The easiest way is to get an inflatable kayak with some accessories for your gears. For a tandem fishing adventures, we recommend a tandem sit on top kayak like the Malibu.
To give you some ideas let’s take a look at a few of the destinations that I’ve found on my travels.
Devils River in Texas certainly has a name that stands out
No article about kayak fishing in the USA would be complete without a trip deep into the heart of Texas. It’s certainly not for the faint-hearted or those of you looking to put your feet up in a nice hotel each evening that’s for sure.
This is very much a favorite of dedicated kayak fishermen who love to get onto ecologically pure waters. There are very few man-made structures that you will encounter which is perfect if you want to get away from it all for the week. Catfish, Carp, and the occasional Bass are all prime catches waiting beneath the surface. If you want to experience wildlife as it used to be before man came along, then I strongly recommend a trip down Devils River.
Just be sure that you’re fully confident in the water and are happy to camp out on the banks in the evenings. If you’re not, then you might get more than you bargained for.
Shelter Cove is an attractive location for the annual kayak fishing derby
If you want to fish in the company of others and learn all manner of neat tricks, then Shelter Cove is the place to be. With more than 200-fishermen taking part every year it’s an excellent opportunity to ingratiate yourself with the community.
One it’s a great destination is, the almost year-round warm water, you can expect a wide variety of different fish. Halibut, Rockfish, and even Salmon call the waters home at various times of the year. This makes it a prime location if you want to try and catch some of the more elusive fish in the US.
The great thing about it being in California is that you’ll never have to drive far for a comfortable hotel. Pick something near the water, and you’ll be able to get there bright and early each morning. I think it’s perfect for getting a prime spot by beating the midmorning rush!
Pine Island Sound in Florida is the epitome of a fish feeding ground
The interesting thing about Florida is that more than 50,000 acres of its land is currently under water. That may seem like an odd thing to be writing about, but when it comes to kayak fishing, it is terrific news.
Pine Island Sound is a fertile area for seagrass which forms the perfect habitat for all manner of sea creatures. As well as hundreds of different species of fish it is also home to several types of small shark. You can also expect to see well over 100-species of birds as they fly in to try and beat you to that prized catch.
One thing to bear in mind is that the busyness of the waterways, both in terms of birds and fellow kayak fishers, can make this a challenging trip. If you’re venturing out onto the water for the first time, then you might consider changing things up and heading to a quieter destination.
If you love to trout fish, then Deep Creek in Maryland is where you need to be
I enjoyed my time at Deep Creek, and I can certainly see why people have fought so hard to maintain its conserved status. Something that is worth noting is that motor boats of all forms are banned from the water. That means, even a relative novice can take to the water safe in the knowledge that they won’t be cut up. It also makes for a more relaxing and pleasant place to be in my opinion.
There is plenty of Trout and Bass just beneath the surface, and I found lots of other species throughout the day. Everything is enclosed in a reservoir which makes for a very casual setting. I would recommend it for those of you who want to turn your kayak fishing exploits into a holiday with the whole family.
Kona Coast in Hawaii is probably my favorite warm weather destination
Know by many as the Land of the Giants, this a corner of the USA that I’m glad I explored. There are loads of gray snappers, and even better than that I found gargantuan tuna in these waters. I also saw the occasional tiger shark which was quite something.
If you are new to kayak fishing, then you can still enjoy it, but you’re best off not venturing too far offshore. The more experience you have, the more you’re going to get out of this stunning location. And because it’s Kona, you’ll be able to take the family along and make a week of it. It’s Ideal if you want to get away from it all and enjoy your hobby.
Just make sure to pick a quieter time of the season, so there’s still plenty of free water. Kona hosts all sorts of events like the Ironman and is a prime tourist hotspot. Choose the time of your trip wisely to ensure there aren’t any crowds around the best fishing spots. That way there’ll be nothing left to do other than paddle, fish, and relax.
Indian River Lagoon in Florida has a whole host of campsites to try out
If you want to turn a kayak fishing trip into a chance to explore the entire wilderness, then Indian River is the place to be. It’s right over on the East coast of Florida and is a prime area for catching speckled trout and tarpon. I also saw a few redfish while I was there too.
What I think you’ll like about the lagoon is that there are plenty of campsites along the shore. I would suggest novice kayakers base themselves at one for the week to get their bearings. More experienced fishers might want to move from site to site along the shore. Ultimately it’s all about getting the most out of the trip so don’t be afraid to try something new and go with the flow.
Okmulgee Lake in Oklahoma is great if you want to camp out under the stars
When I kayak fish, I’m into camping out on the shore. That way I get to make a fire, pitch my tent, and cook up the catch of the day. It makes for a simple and relaxing end to the day. If this sounds ideal, then Okmulgee Lake is a spot experienced kayak fishers have been frequenting for years.
It may not come up on too many tourist guides, but that’s why I rate it so highly. There’s a small dock that you can use to set off from, and from there, there’s plenty of campsites dotting the shoreline. Spotted bass is the most common fish, and they’re also pretty challenging to catch at times. That makes it an excellent spot for the more experienced fisher who wants to test their skills.
One thing I will say is that you may want to pack quite light. With loads of campsites along the shore, it’s easy to extend your trip, but not so easy to be lugging stuff out of your truck every night. I found that I could readily buy anything I needed within a short drive of the lake. This was nice because it meant I could focus on getting away from it all and just generally going with the flow on my trip.
Panama City Beach in Florida is as warm and tropical as it sounds
I like paddling across open expanses of warm water because it’s the most relaxing feeling in the world. What I liked about this little corner of Florida is that there is a gentle cooling breeze, but it’s not too strong. This makes it nice and easy to paddle in any direction you want to go.
Something that’s quite interesting is that it seems to be an area used for kayak fishing, and not a whole lot else. When I parked up, I saw all manner of different fisheries, so I thought I was in for a crowded few days on the water. What was great is that there wasn’t anyone other than kayak fishers out there. Motorboats and jet skis don’t venture onto the waters, so they stay idyllically calm all day long. That made it the ideal getaway for me, and one I certainly intend to go back to.
There are also plenty of different species of fish to catch. Flounders, redfish, and a healthy population of sea trout are all there. Ideal if you want to be able to catch something new every time you dip your rod in. Because the area was so relaxed and quiet, it makes for the right choice for a rookie kayak fisher. With no motorboats or crowded areas on the water, there’s ample time to brush up on the basics before venturing a little further from the shore.
Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania is the home of some amazing catfish
If catfish are what you’re after, then I think this spot could be ideal. There also some rarer specimens in the form of Pikes and Pickerels which makes for some exciting fishing. The summer months will be the busiest as that’s when the tourists join the locals on the water.
If you’re brand new to kayak fishing, then it might be best to get in the water early in the morning so you can get your bearings. That said, it’s not so busy that you’ll be crowded out of the best spots if you leave it until lunchtime. Take the time to enjoy the scenery of the shorelines as the day progresses and there’ll be all sorts of things to look at.
What I would suggest is that planning where you’re going to camp ahead of time is essential. I like to camp under the stars, but there aren’t all that many dedicated sites along the way. Take some time to plan this part of the trip so that you don’t end up driving back to base each day. The trip will be all the more enjoyable for it!
If you want to try kayak fishing in the USA, then there’s a whole host of different spots you can consider. Start by getting confident on the water, and then take your rod out with you once you feel at home. Take the time to get to know your surroundings, and begin with trips that aren’t more than a day’s drive from home. That way if you find you need any extra supplies or a well-earned rest, you won’t get stuck in the middle of nowhere.
Most importantly of all, get out on the water and enjoy it! Kayak fishing is about exploring the wilderness and going where other people don’t. There’s nothing better than ditching the shopping mall or the ballgame in favor of a day on the water. It’s the most relaxing hobby there is, and there’s the opportunity to cook up the catch of the day, at the end of it. What could be better than that?