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Can I Bowfish from a Kayak?

Kayak Bowfishing

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Have you asked the question what is bowfishing and how does it go with kayaking? Bowfishing is a fast-growing sport that will combine fishing and archery.  You love fishing, archery as well as kayaking, so how about  combining the three sports? You’ve asked the question can you bowfish from a kayak? Well, the answer to your question is yes, but it is not going to be easy.

What type of kayak should I have to bowfish from?

You need to look at a kayak models that will give you the most stability. Also find one that has the highest sidewall as possible.  Landing a fish in your kayak is not an easy task. An inflatable kayak would work if you find one that is uses for traditional fishing. The reason being is that it has more space than a recreational kayak. A two person inflatable would work even better. This will give you more space for the gear that is needed, if  you remove the front seat. This allows for room for your gear like a cooler and your bow.

An even better option will be a sit on top kayak. This kayak already has the space you need to stand and also allows you to add your gear. You also have the ability to get on and off easier (in a sit in yak can’t do that easily). Since bowfishing is done in shallow water there may a point where you get off of your kayak and stand in the water.

So, you could be saying why use a kayak then? Having the kayak will allow you to go to different areas that you can’t reach by foot or even a larger boat.

Another option is to get a kayak with foot powered paddles. This would give you the ability not  to worry about paddling, as you go along the shallow water. Also, they usually have wider platforms and storage that is needed for fishing. The only question is how quiet are they for fishing?

And even though we favor kayaks on this site, a canoe would work even better for bowfishing, due to the stability and space it has. The canoe is wider and makes standing up to shoot your bow easy. And once you catch your fish you have room for storage.

If you want to be really adventurous then try a paddle boat you have all the space, you’re already standing you just have to figure out how to lower your paddle and shoot your arrow.

Here is a video that shows how you can set up your kayak for the best bowfishing trip. He has everything that you need.

What about outriggers?

Outriggers seem to be a great option for your hard-shell kayak. They help with stability so that when you stand up you won’t tip over. You kayak outriggercan install the outriggers that lift up and don’t drag in the water while you are paddling out to the area that you are going to fish in and then once there lower the outriggers for the stability.  Also don’t forget to have an anchor so that once you get to where you want to be you wont drift away.

What type of bow to shoot with from a kayak?

Since you will have limited space in the kayak you may not be able to use the traditional bows.  You may have to get a short compound type of bow like a Barracuda, or a shorter bow than you would normally have in recurve bow category. Remember you’re going to have limited room, there are times where you may even be on your knees trying to shoot and with a full size bow it may be challenging or not even have enough space.

Items you should have on or in your kayak

  • Anchor so that you can stay in place once you get to where you are going. You don’t want to keep drifting
  • Extra arrow in case yours gets broken or stuck in such a way you can’t bet it back
  • Cooler to store your fish
  • Spotlight attached to kayak if doing night fishing
  • Life-jacket
  • Bow holder/ rod holder (Suggest a Yakattack)
  • Retriever system on your bow
  • Bow

Conclusion to bowfishing in a kayak

Our initial question was can you bowfish from a kayak? And the answer is yes, you can bowfish from a kayak. This is combining multiple great sports, giving you the best of three worlds. When asking which kayaks to use are either a sit on top or a two-person kayak. Both, will allow you to have more space to handle all of your gear that is needed. It is recommended to get outriggers so that your stability will not be an option. If you choose no outrigger, then you will need to learn how to be stable in your kayak. Either way you go you are sure to be in for a great adventure.


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Bowfish from a Kayak

Photo by Mervi Lievonen from FreeImages Photo by Herbert Kikoy on Unsplash

Kayak Bowfishing

Can I Bowfish from a Kayak?

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