When I very first began working with a kayak to hunt, there was virtually zero details on the internet about it. I searched and searched, and typically came up empty handed with the exception of a couple of duck hunting articles. It produced it pretty challenging to prepare for my very first season of kayak hunting when there weren’t genuinely any authorities supplying assistance.
For me, almost everything was discovered solely by knowledge in the field, or I guess, on the water. These days it appears there’s been an uptick in interest. A couple of die really hard hunters have discovered that this is an extremely successful way to get to unpressured locations, and it is peaked the interest of individuals across the nation.
Fortunately, new kayak hunters now have a fair quantity of content material to consume to support them get into the game of hunting with a kayak. That becoming stated, I want to share with you 5 strategies from items I have discovered all through the years of effectively hunting from a kayak. I hope this assists you in your preparations, and perhaps gets you one particular step closer to paddling out that massive buck.
Organizing to hunt from a kayak this season? Right here are some items to take into consideration.
Security Above All Else
I will admit that this has been my weakness when it comes to hunting from a kayak. I have not generally followed the needed security guidelines as properly as I must, but have gradually discovered the significance of it. Kayak hunting naturally requires much more work than a hunter might be made use of to, so it is simple to skip some of the methods out of comfort. Nonetheless, it also requires very a bit much more threat. Keep in mind that your life and security must be the quantity one particular concern prior to you step foot in the kayak.
Right here are many methods I believe you can lower the threat involved in kayak hunting.
1st, put on a PFD (life jacket). This has been one particular region that I have not been faithful. The reality is, hunting season is typically pretty cold. I know from knowledge that attempting to swim in under freezing temps is practically not possible. Your physique freezes up. Your limbs do not move as promptly as they must. It is a scary predicament. Not to mention that if you are wearing rubber boots, they will fill up with water and generally turn out to be weights attached to your feet. It is not a very good predicament.
These days there are PFDs that you can put on that are not bulky. The co2 charged PFDs, like the one particular from Onyx, are an investment, but if required, they’ll be the most essential piece of gear you have.
An additional security precaution is letting a person know exactly where you are at all occasions. If you are undertaking it proper, you must be going into areas exactly where there is minimal human intrusion. Which also signifies that there will be no one particular there to support you, must you locate oneself in a negative predicament.
When you go out, share your place with a person and make confident they know precisely exactly where you are. Have a time set for you to verify back in when you are out of the woods. If you do not verify in by that time, that particular person will know one thing has occurred and be in a position to inform the correct authorities to make sure your security. The majority of your time on the water throughout a kayak hunt will be prior to and immediately after daylight, so once again, the threat is there.
An additional security measure is possessing a 360 degree light someplace on your kayak. This enables other boaters to be in a position to see you. In most states this is essentially a law, so make confident you know your area’s regulations prior to you go. There are lots of much more security precautions involved in kayak hunting, but you must generally use sound judgement. If you believe there’s even a possibility of danger, just bear in mind that there are individuals who want to see you make it out alive.
A totally loaded kayak can make items difficult. Do you have a program to preserve items secure?
Have a Achievement Program
I’ve generally been the form of deer hunter that would go into an region without the need of very first considering about how I’m going to get a massive buck out if I have been to kill one particular. Immediately after all, our key target is to kill deer.
That becoming stated, a kayak hunter must generally have a program in spot to get the deer out, must they be profitable. In my Nucanoe Frontier 12, it is pretty simple to load a complete grown buck in the boat without the need of compromising my security throughout transport.
I also understand that most individuals are not working with a kayak of this caliber, so the transportation aspect could possibly get a tiny bit exciting.
There are lots of methods I’ve noticed it carried out, but right here are 3 that I believe could be reasonably simple for any person:
Pack Out Approach – If I have been arranging to use a kayak with a decrease weight capacity, this would undoubtedly be my very first selection for transportation. Quartering up your deer requires a tiny bit much more perform, but it drastically decreases the quantity of weight you have to place on your kayak. Not only does it lower weight, but it cuts down on the quantity of space it will take up. I would recommend possessing a backpack that is created to pack out game, and you will be set!
Tow A Raft – This was my very first thought for transport, when I initially decided I wanted to attempt kayak hunting. Fortunately, just about every kayak I’ve ever hunted with had a higher weight capacity, but I nonetheless believe this approach could be pretty valuable and simple. Most kayaks have some sort of dry storage constructed in. I would recommend discovering a affordable inflatable raft that you can preserve deflated in your dry storage compartment so it does not take any space, and then you have it prepared to go must you be profitable. Make confident you also pack a rope to tether the raft to your kayak, and just pull it behind you. This approach will slow you down drastically, but when you have got the buck, who cares?
Life Jacket Approach – This is my least favored of the transport solutions, but I’ve noticed it carried out effectively many occasions. All you would do right here is carry an added PFD, strap it on the deer, and pull it behind your kayak. It is essential that you do not field dress the animal prior to transport, as the gut cavity will give added buoyancy. You also do not want the water to taint the meat inside of the cavity. Like the raft approach, this will drastically lower your speed. I would also not propose this approach if you are in the deep south with gator infested water.
Do you have a achievement program?
Use Lots of Leashes
My greatest nightmare is that I’m going to have an accident on the water and all of my gear is going to fall into the depths of the lake, by no means to be noticed once again. This essentially occurred to my dad even though we have been hunting one particular cold December day in 2017. Fortunately, the water was only about 15 feet deep in that spot, and we have been in a position to recover almost everything.
This produced me a firm believer in maintaining all of my gear leashed to the kayak at all occasions. It is such a straightforward answer to make sure nothing at all gets lost, and it can be pretty affordable. Most outside shops will carry some form of paddle leash, but that price begins to add up.
I take about 3′ of paracord and attach a affordable carabiner to every single side. A single carabiner attaches someplace on the boat and the other to the piece of gear. It is affordable, simple, and successful.
You have study a lot at this point about your setup, but I want to share a bit of kayak hunting techniques right here. If you have decided you want to start off kayak hunting, it is probably due to wanting to get away from a lot of hunter stress in your region. I have had minimal human intrusion in my kayak hunts, but when I do, it is usually due to my lack of preparation and scouting that was to blame.
I do most of my scouting on onX maps. Commonly I start off with a launch point and attempt to locate the public locations inside about a 7 mile boat ride that are the furthest away from any parking region or road technique. Nonetheless, there have been just a couple of occasions that I located an region that was believed to be land/water locked, only to get there and locate a properly made use of gravel road top proper into the parcel.
Your mapping app is fantastic, but you can not beat in-particular person intel. For all of the locations I hunt now, I will take some time to drive about the whole radius of the home to verify just about every attainable access point, and browsing for roads that might not show up on the map.
There’s nothing at all worse than paddling for an hour or two, only to understand there’s a road technique one hundred yards from your location. Distance, water, and terrain are the key items that deter most hunters from going into an region. Anything I generally do is attempt to make confident I’m at least a mile away from any stroll-in access spot, with either steep terrain or some sort of water technique among. If I do not have that, then I’m assuming there are individuals hunting it on a normal basis. That does not imply there are not deer in the region, but just that it may well be a lot easier to stroll in than kayak.
A mixture of sufficient scouting and aggressive techniques can lead to achievement.
A single of my favored elements to kayak hunting is the reality that it is so stealthy. I have located that deer do not spook out of an region, even if they see me paddling by them. I can not inform you how lots of sets of eyes my light has shined prior to daylight, only to see these exact same deer in the exact same spot when I’m set up. They merely do not associate the water with danger. This is why I genuinely like to use the water benefit as significantly as I possibly can throughout every single kayak hunt.
If there is a creek that may well get me closer to the spot I intend to hunt, I will generally opt to paddle as close as I can. We all know that familiar sound of leaves crunching beneath our feet. Nicely, so do the deer. The sound of a paddle going via the water might not be quiet, but it is significantly significantly less alarming to a deer.
Deer probably reside their complete life close to water. They’ve heard fish jump just about every day, beavers slap their tails on the surface, and loads of other sounds coming from the water that they’ve by no means had to associate with danger. I am convinced that working with the kayak approach is the most stealthy way to aggressively access your hunting region, brief of becoming in a position to fly.
There are so lots of positive aspects to kayak access, I couldn’t even start to name them all in one particular short article. The reality is that most of your know-how about this style of hunting will come from time spent undertaking it. But I can guarantee you one particular point, if you will stick to it, and do not give up, you will set oneself up for the adventure of a lifetime when hunting from a kayak.