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Paul Roberts

Chasing the Big Girls -by Satellite! And First Yak'n.

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Got a yak, to cover larger waters than I can in my tube. It's a cheap one, and I probably spent as much on rigging it to fish as I did on the boat. It’s also small, at 10ft, which allows me to put it onto the roof of my truck by myself —even after a hard day’s fishing. But, it's not for standing up and fishing.

 

After a couple trial runs to fathom her stability, and figure out what she really needed to be fishable, we hit a 30 acre prairie res I'd never fished before. I studied satellite images, identifying areas to start my search for big pre-spawn females. I got there, put the boat in, and paddled directly to a large bar, that bounds a large heated flat, I’d seen by satellite. On my very first cast I found the first big female, in the low 5lb range. Took two more -a high 3, and a 4.5- on a later run.

 

The satellite helped, a lot, but things had changed some, of course, and nothing beats being there on the water with your eyes peeled and sonar pinging. In retrospect, I wish I'd done more pinging and mapping before I started flinging. Could have been an even better trip.

 

Despite being spoiled by the boat control I have with my float tube, (ooooooo :mad1:-I'm going to have to do some serious audio editing on that next video fishing journal), I found the little yak very fishable. I just have to be patient, which means more down-time spent positioning, and repositioning, and repositioning,... . 😆 But, it was stable, nimble enough, and fast. This last was what I bought it for in the first place. And, despite some headaches, it put me on some good fish. That little yak and I got busy.

 

I feel better now, having got out and fished. Ahhhhhhhh. Now, back to the editing....

 

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Nice work!

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Well Done Paul ~ 

Can't wait to see the edit.

Congrats

A-Jay

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Nicely done! That’s a beast of a bass.

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Very nice - look forward to your next adventure.

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Holy smokes -- I'd call that a successful maiden voyage!

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Awesome bass 

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14 hours ago, MIbassyaker said:

Holy smokes -- I'd call that a successful maiden voyage!

Yes, it was! Although I actually worked pretty hard trying to home in on the big females, despite that first cast. I know the place a whole lot better now, and it wasn't easy to find consolidated fish, beyond the initial spot, except for smaller fish. The weather flip-flopped: a glorious 75F and sunny on day 2, and 45F and windy on day 3. I lasted it out, but I was one fleece layer shy. But, that's fishing. Funny, the hard work seems to fade from memory pretty quick. The great days I remember "so well", when I go back to my written journals, I find took more time and effort than I remember.

 

This trip was actually my third time getting the yak wet. I took it step by step. The first time I first got it wet, last fall, was to familiarize myself with its stability: test rolls, and standing up (AOK for paddling, but not for... casting , concentrating "out there", and hook setting, I think; Risky, at best). LOL, when I first rolled it, on purpose, a fisherman saw me and came running. "Dude! Dude! You OK!!??" "Yeah, I did it on purpose." And he shook his head and went back to fishing. :)

 

Second trial was after it was fully rigged to fish, to see if it truly was rigged to fish. I had the 3 day fishing trip coming up and I didn't want to troubleshoot then. So I went to a local pond and... man, I'm glad I did. Took some time before I was even able to make a cast! I was able to take care of some crucial details that would have seriously hampered my coming trip. Had some good catching at the local pond though, so I was able to break myself in pretty well there.

 

Then, I went fishing! I know you are a more experienced yakker than I, and I'm not sure you remember what it was like figuring things out for the first time. I immediately came to appreciate the importance of stability, tracking/maneuverability, and anchoring. And, my standards are high there, hence the :mad1:. Once I got that stuff smoothed out a bit, I realized that this little yak and I are going to get along quite well. But, man, those switching breezes are a :mad1:.

:) 

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Great job & you can't buy experience just have to put time & effort = sweat equity 

cheers

Rick

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On 4/1/2019 at 5:53 PM, Coldbasser said:

Great job & you can't buy experience just have to put time & effort = sweat equity 

cheers

Rick

Thanks, Rick. Yeah, pretty much true of everything that's truly worthwhile.

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11 hours ago, Paul Roberts said:

Yes, it was! Although I actually worked pretty hard trying to home in on the big females, despite that first cast. I know the place a whole lot better now, and it wasn't easy to find consolidated fish, beyond the initial spot, except for smaller fish. The weather flip-flopped: a glorious 75F and sunny on day 2, and 45F and windy on day 3. I lasted it out, but I was one fleece layer shy. But, that's fishing. Funny, the hard work seems to fade from memory pretty quick. The great days I remember "so well", when I go back to my written journals, I find took more time and effort than I remember.

 

This trip was actually my third time getting the yak wet. I took it step by step. The first time I first got it wet, last fall, was to familiarize myself with its stability: test rolls, and standing up (AOK for paddling, but not for... casting , concentrating "out there", and hook setting, I think; Risky, at best). LOL, when I first rolled it, on purpose, a fisherman saw me and came running. "Dude! Dude! You OK!!??" "Yeah, I did it on purpose." And he shook his head and went back to fishing. :)

 

Second trial was after it was fully rigged to fish, to see if it truly was rigged to fish. I had the 3 day fishing trip coming up and I didn't want to troubleshoot then. So I went to a local pond and... man, I'm glad I did. Took some time before I was even able to make a cast! I was able to take care of some crucial details that would have seriously hampered my coming trip. Had some good catching at the local pond though, so I was able to break myself in pretty well there.

 

Then, I went fishing! I know you are a more experienced yakker than I, and I'm not sure you remember what it was like figuring things out for the first time. I immediately came to appreciate the importance of stability, tracking/maneuverability, and anchoring. And, my standards are high there, hence the :mad1:. Once I got that stuff smoothed out a bit, I realized that this little yak and I are going to get along quite well. But, man, those switching breezes are a :mad1:.

:) 

 

It's funny -- I had a lot of casual/recreational experience river & lake kayaking before I ever tried fishing from one, so I was already pretty familiar with stability management, maneuvering, craft control, etc. in kayaks that were...well, rather less stable than a typical fishing kayak.  So when I first tried an angling-specific sit-on-top kayak, it was a revelation!  It was really difficult to roll!  And I was so jazzed about being off the bank for fishing, I didn't care that positioning in wind and current was a pain, and I didn't care that I couldn't actually stand in it.

 

In other words, my standards on these matters were (and still are, to some extent) low: For me the comparison was to being shore-bound, or perhaps to a more cumbersome canoe or rowboat. 

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@MIbassyaker Besides "real" boats (I owned one once), I went from shore to a float tube. I was happy to be off the bank, but, there is a learning curve there too. Duck in the water, except, I wasn’t a duck. I guess I am now! :) If I want to turn, I can literally spin. Glad I’m not susceptible to motion sickness! That’s the kind of “spoiled” I meant. My standards became blaringly high, when I got in my yak for the first time, bc of my float tube experience.

 

I have canoeing experience, so I had a good idea what I was getting into. But that 10ft “fishing” kayak is a different animal than a standard 15ft canoe; Much more responsive. My yak learning curve is going to involve reading the wind, with accurate anchor placement. 

 

And there are some safety concerns thrown in that might not be apparent, if you weren’t hip to them. Agreed, a fishing kayak is relatively difficult to roll, but with my little 10fter it is possible, and we can reach the point of no return pretty quick, if I’m not aware of my mass and inertia. When I first took it out, with all my rigging and gear, I warned myself, “This thing is a potential disaster waiting to happen”. I’ll definitely be re-thinking my gear tethering system. In terms of safety, I found YT and kayak sites, to be a great help. With my old car topper, I’d be able to double anchor. Bad idea with a kayak though, at least the one I have.

 

So, I see, in my fishing, there is a definite place for both tube and yak. I could also see a place for a full-sized kayak, and a flat-bottom, and a bass boat —probably a little 17, and a big 20. :)) Luckily, there is more small water out there than I actually have time to do justice. I’m content with a good pair of boots, a float tube, and now a small portable fishing kayak. 👍

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On 3/31/2019 at 5:36 PM, 12poundbass said:

Nicely done! That’s a beast of a bass.

Yes, she was. She was older than the others. The others were beautiful specimens, in their prime, esp the 3+ in the last photo. The "beast", if I'd held her up to a wide lens and hid my fingers, she could have weighed... anything I wanted. :)) I didn't weigh her. I don't care really, and know what I'm looking at. She was 20". I did weigh the 4.5, (who just touched 19"), for those who might care, remembering I'm on camera.

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On 4/2/2019 at 10:20 AM, Paul Roberts said:

 My yak learning curve is going to involve reading the wind, with accurate anchor placement. 

 

And there are some safety concerns thrown in that might not be apparent, if you weren’t hip to them. Agreed, a fishing kayak is relatively difficult to roll, but with my little 10fter it is possible, and we can reach the point of no return pretty quick, if I’m not aware of my mass and inertia. When I first took it out, with all my rigging and gear, I warned myself, “This thing is a potential disaster waiting to happen”. I’ll definitely be re-thinking my gear tethering system. In terms of safety, I found YT and kayak sites, to be a great help. With my old car topper, I’d be able to double anchor. Bad idea with a kayak though, at least the one I have.

 

 

Yes, reading the wind, knowing how much wind is too much to even venture out; sticking close to shore or finding protected coves is all part of it.

 

I like the wide open deck, as you have, as it's easier to put things down in front of you or behind you.

 

Also, I like the way you have 2 of your rod holders angled back (the more horizontal and angled in the better, flat to the deck is the best for me).  Not a fan of the straight up vertical rod holder position, as I don't want to limit my casting motion or even having to think about it.  Don't know how many guys on you tube that I've seen hook into one of their upright rods or lures behind them on a cast and backlash or launch one of the extra rods out into the water.  You may even consider a rod holder mounted on a side track in front of you, so you can set your rod in it when taking a fish off or changing lures or retying. All part of the experimenting/figuring out what works the best for you process.

 

Awareness of the "potential disaster waiting to happen" thing is a huge thing.  Complacency or recklessness can lead to disaster faster than you can blink an eye.  

 

I've been kayak fishing for over 10 years and in the first year I dumped my first kayak - a WS 10' Tarpon - waves going one way and wake from a nearby boat going the other way were the cause, along with me not staying still in the seat.  Fortunately, I was close to shore and although I lost some gear due to not have everything tied down- I learned many valuable lessons. Among the lessons - always a PFD on, be aware of conditions and don't take too much stuff (I rarely even take an anchor any more, as I like to drift and enjoy covering water and fishing that way).  Since then, I have gotten a much more stable and lighter hybrid style Hornbeck kayak/canoe and have gained more experience.  Fishing from a kayak is a lot of fun.

 

Having the kayak will definitely provide you with additional fishing opportunities.  I look forward to enjoying more of your excellent fishing videos.

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9 hours ago, RichPenNY said:

Yes, reading the wind, knowing how much wind is too much to even venture out; sticking close to shore or finding protected coves is all part of it.

 

I like the wide open deck, as you have, as it's easier to put things down in front of you or behind you.

 

Also, I like the way you have 2 of your rod holders angled back (the more horizontal and angled in the better, flat to the deck is the best for me).  Not a fan of the straight up vertical rod holder position, as I don't want to limit my casting motion or even having to think about it.  Don't know how many guys on you tube that I've seen hook into one of their upright rods or lures behind them on a cast and backlash or launch one of the extra rods out into the water.  You may even consider a rod holder mounted on a side track in front of you, so you can set your rod in it when taking a fish off or changing lures or retying. All part of the experimenting/figuring out what works the best for you process.

 

Awareness of the "potential disaster waiting to happen" thing is a huge thing.  Complacency or recklessness can lead to disaster faster than you can blink an eye.  

 

I've been kayak fishing for over 10 years and in the first year I dumped my first kayak - a WS 10' Tarpon - waves going one way and wake from a nearby boat going the other way were the cause, along with me not staying still in the seat.  Fortunately, I was close to shore and although I lost some gear due to not have everything tied down- I learned many valuable lessons. Among the lessons - always a PFD on, be aware of conditions and don't take too much stuff (I rarely even take an anchor any more, as I like to drift and enjoy covering water and fishing that way).  Since then, I have gotten a much more stable and lighter hybrid style Hornbeck kayak/canoe and have gained more experience.  Fishing from a kayak is a lot of fun.

 

Having the kayak will definitely provide you with additional fishing opportunities.  I look forward to enjoying more of your excellent fishing videos.

I too have suffered a few nautical disasters over the years, so... I guess I'm a bit paranoid there. Some were doozy's. The one that still gives me the heebie-jeebies, was a canoe fishing trip with a buddy on the Genesee River. We hit a long flat glide, and I spotted a log laying partially in the water. It was too shallow, but back then I'd stop to cast at anything. Heck, I guess I'll still do that. We tied off and I waded over to cast, and noticed the mist just ahead. We'd stopped just yards from one of the massive Letchworth falls! :surprised: The people we could see below looked like ants. And I suspect that log saved them from seeing two boobs in a red canoe go over.

 

I found the front deck space to be the primary workspace. My boat is a bit cramped to easily access the area behind the seat, esp with the vertical rod holders there. I haven't had too much trouble casting around them, but they do limit direct overhead casting. I may have to re-think the rod holders. The more horiz holders are for spinning rods and I cut slots in them that partially locks each outfit in place by the reel stem. Rod goes in at ~45deg, and the reel stem drops into a 0deg slot. Twist to 45 and remove. I'm still going to want to tether though. I love my rods n reels!

 

Wow, that Hornbeck sure is light! 18lbs for a 12fter. My poly yak is 50lbs, bare.

 

Paul

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12 hours ago, Paul Roberts said:

We'd stopped just yards from one of the massive Letchworth falls! 

 

 I'm still going to want to tether though. I love my rods n reels!

 

Wow, that Hornbeck sure is light! 18lbs for a 12fter. My poly yak is 50lbs, bare.

 

Paul

Amazing, the Letchworth Falls close call.  Looking back, thank god for the many times we've dodged injuries or worse.

 

I love my rods and reels as well.  For peace of mind, I put a few inches of copper pipe foam insulation on the idle rods in my kayak.   I remove the piece of insulation on the rod I'm using.  You're going through the experimenting/figuring out what works process, and will figure out whats best for you. 

 

Yes, 18#s is nice, however, surely not as durable as your rig; there's tradeoffs for everything.  The bottom of my rig is pretty scratched up now and has been patched a few times, just need to be careful around rocks.  I'll take the wear and tear on the kayak vs. my body.  My 10' Tarpon weighed about 50# but my shoulders were telling me that I needed lighter as I got older; so I spent the $$ to save weight on the kayak and think I saved more $$ preventing doctor and rehab visits for my broken and aching body  - again, there are tradeoffs.

 

I enjoy your videos as well as the perspective from someone that's also spent some time fishing in the Rochester, NY area. Thanks 

Rich

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18 hours ago, RichPenNY said:

Amazing, the Letchworth Falls close call.  Looking back, thank god for the many times we've dodged injuries or worse.

 

I love my rods and reels as well.  For peace of mind, I put a few inches of copper pipe foam insulation on the idle rods in my kayak.   I remove the piece of insulation on the rod I'm using.  You're going through the experimenting/figuring out what works process, and will figure out whats best for you. 

 

Yes, 18#s is nice, however, surely not as durable as your rig; there's tradeoffs for everything.  The bottom of my rig is pretty scratched up now and has been patched a few times, just need to be careful around rocks.  I'll take the wear and tear on the kayak vs. my body.  My 10' Tarpon weighed about 50# but my shoulders were telling me that I needed lighter as I got older; so I spent the $$ to save weight on the kayak and think I saved more $$ preventing doctor and rehab visits for my broken and aching body  - again, there are tradeoffs.

 

I enjoy your videos as well as the perspective from someone that's also spent some time fishing in the Rochester, NY area. Thanks 

Rich

Thanks, Rich. Yes, I'll be playing around with ideas to keep my stuff safe, and efficient. I do have a Kistler Helium LTA ("Lighter Than Air"); Apparently there is He injected into the blank (??). And, it floats. :)) Not sure if all my rigs will float with pipe insulation, but will play around.

 

I can tell that I'll probably need to go lighter, rather than heavier, in time. Getting there already it seems. Lots of great option out there though. Heck, my float tube weighs 40lbs, all dressed up and ready to go! I tend to carry lots of lead. :) 

 

Yes, I think we talked about "Manitou" once. Interesting place it was/is?

 

Paul

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Paul

Not sure that we have ever met.  If you try out the insulation for floating your rigs, you'll be surprised how little it will take.  Also, one other thing that you may experience with your kayak set up, although I hope not, is with the crisscross bands in the front that are holding your paddle.  I went so far as to remove the rope handle at the font of my kayak, as I found that at the worst time a hook would be able to find the smallest section of rope, no matter how much I paid attention. This was never good, although crushing the barbs down which I do on everything made extracting hooks from ropes or elastic a little easier. You're probably more attentive than I am, however, just something to watch out for.

Rich

 

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2 hours ago, RichPenNY said:

If you try out the insulation for floating your rigs, you'll be surprised how little it will take.

My full cork Avids float with a sub 8 oz. reel, with nothing added.

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21 hours ago, RichPenNY said:

Paul

Not sure that we have ever met.  If you try out the insulation for floating your rigs, you'll be surprised how little it will take.  Also, one other thing that you may experience with your kayak set up, although I hope not, is with the crisscross bands in the front that are holding your paddle.  I went so far as to remove the rope handle at the font of my kayak, as I found that at the worst time a hook would be able to find the smallest section of rope, no matter how much I paid attention. This was never good, although crushing the barbs down which I do on everything made extracting hooks from ropes or elastic a little easier. You're probably more attentive than I am, however, just something to watch out for.

Rich

 

I don't think we've ever met. But I thought we chatted a wile back about the Penfield area. I did experience the hooks and bow lines thing, but the hooks never buried, both the elastic and parachute cord being hard cased enough that I ended up leaving them on. 

18 hours ago, J Francho said:

My full cork Avids float with a sub 8 oz. reel, with nothing added.

I'll have to try with my rods. I am quite sure mine won't. Esp my Ardito travel rods, at least with their heavy butt ends. They will probably go down like a rocket, and stand vertically off bottom. I might then be able to catch em with a crankbait. :) Maybe I should just leave them as is, and say those massive butts were designed esp for kayak fishing.

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I actually just purchased my first true fishing vessel! I bought a nucanoe frontier 12! It won’t be here for 3 weeks which stinks but I can’t wsit ! I fish out of an old town saranac now but it’s nothing like this will do.  Congrats 

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1 hour ago, Paul Roberts said:

@Ksam1234 Oh, wow. I just looked them up. That may just be my next boat. You are going to luv it!

Yeah man I got to demo one the other day and it was amazing. You can stand and even walk around with ease. Has so much room for everything.  I’ll keep you updated

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