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Choosing The Right Pedal Fishing Kayak

Choosing The Right Pedal Fishing Kayak

The stealth of kayaks is more suitable than motorized boats when it comes to fishing in shallow waters. But maneuvering a traditional paddle kayak and controlling the fishing rod simultaneously can be a nightmare even for seasoned kayakers.

Pedal kayaks are much better in terms of control as you don’t need both your hands to maneuver the kayak. Your hands will remain free, so you can focus more on fishing than handling the kayak.

Let’s get to know about choosing the right pedal fishing kayak in detail. From different kayak types to features you need to consider, everything will be in one place.

Why Choose a Pedal Fishing Kayak?

Paddle kayaks are traditionally used for shallow water fishing. As you can silently glide over the water on these paddle kayaks, reaching your target area without disturbing the fish spree becomes a lot easier.

But problems arise when you have the fishing rod in hand and need maneuvering the kayak. Both of your hands remain engaged in paddle kayaks. To maneuver the kayak and focus on fishing at the same time, you need to switch between the fishing rod and paddles back and forth.

In pedal kayaks, you can push the kayak forward or backward using your legs. The direction of the kayak is controlled via radar. You need to use one of your hands to control the radar. Another hand remains free, which you can use to hold the fishing rod.

Using paddles for a long time can be heavy on your hands. As leg muscles are more powerful, you can continue pedaling for hours at a slow pace while keeping your hands free for casting or baiting.

Though pedal kayaks are usually costlier and more difficult to maintain, these two main benefits outrun paddle kayaks very easily.

Difference Between Pedal and Paddle Kayaks

As the name suggests, paddle kayaks are operated with a paddle that has a long shaft and two flat areas on the sides. Kayakers use the paddle with their hand to push the kayak forward and backward and control the kayak's direction.

The most convenient feature of paddle kayaks is you can instantly change the direction or position of the kayak with paddles. This can be a great feature when you are just enjoying nature. But engaging both your hands in kayaking becomes the main hindrance while fishing.

On the other hand, Pedal kayaks use a drive system that can be run with the feet. It’s more like riding a bicycle. When you push these pedals, the fins fitted underneath the kayak rotate and propel the kayak through the water.

A rudder is used in the back of the kayak for steering. You can adjust the radar with your hands via a control column. The biggest advantage of pedal kayaks is both of your hands aren’t engaged, so you can easily hold the fishing rod or pull the fishing line when necessary.

But remember, changing the direction of pedal kayaks is a bit sluggish.

Things to Consider Before Choosing the Right Pedal Fishing Kayak

Pedal fishing kayaks are built keeping the fishermen’s needs in mind. Before choosing a pedal kayak, make sure the kayak has the following features to satisfy your fishing needs.

Sitting Arrangement

You’ll mostly see two types of sitting arrangements in fishing kayaks. One is sit-on-top, and the other is a sit-in kayak. In sit-on-top kayaks, your seating level is higher than water. So, you can see everything better. Sit-on-top kayaks are more stable than other types.

But the problem is, you can get wet with water splashes. It becomes a big issue when the weather is cold, and you don’t have proper clothing.

Pedal kayaks usually have a seat inside the body so that you will be sitting under the water level. Also, check whether the seat can be adjusted to your comfort. The seat should be properly cushioned as you will be sitting on that for hours.


While fighting with a fish on the water, you need a stable kayak that won’t tip over so easily. Wider kayaks have better stability. But if the kayak is too short and wide, its speed will be slower.

Your pedal fishing kayak needs to be at least 30 inches wide. Sometimes, you might need to stand, so check whether the kayak can float upright in those cases.

Rod Holders

This is a crucial feature for a fishing kayak. As you can’t hold the fishing rod all the time, you need to rest it on something. A rod holder makes the job easier so that you can hook the rod onto the rod holder.


You need to carry fishing gear, extra clothing, food, and other belongings while fishing on the water. So, your fishing kayak should have enough storage to put all those things safely.

Sit-in kayaks usually have less storage space compared to sit-on-top kayaks. So, choose carefully depending on your needs.


As angling is mostly performed as a recreational activity, you might go somewhere far from your home. And it would be best if you carried the kayak to the fishing spot and back home.

If your kayak is too heavy, transporting the kayak from one place to be another will be a big hassle. So, try to choose a kayak that isn’t that heavy but has all the necessary features.


Choosing the right pedal fishing kayak from so many options out there isn’t easy. And your fishing experience depends a lot on the kayak you use. The ease of handling fishing rods while cruising through the water with confidence gives pedal kayaks an edge over their paddle counterparts.

Unless you want your hands to be tangled with paddles and fishing rods, pedal fishing kayaks are the best option to choose. Check for the necessary features in the kayak you are buying to make your next fishing trip memorable.

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