Some kayak anglers have the gift of being able to express themselves very clearly and thoroughly, and some do it exceptionally well. Some kayak fishermen have a sense for observing things in detail, and for drawing meaningful conclusions. Others suffer from various physical disabilities and problems, including severe ones.
This big and tall, elderly and disabled kayak fisherman from Texas belongs to these three categories, and he wrote a review of the Wavewalk 500 that’s classic in the sense that it’s encompassing and interesting, as well as painfully personal.
On top of this, the author of this review shows his W500 that he rigged intelligently.
This review is a highly recommended reading for anyone who likes to fish and suffers from back pain.
Many kayak companies are trapped within the design limitations imposed by the mono-hull form. They strive to come up with exciting and useful innovations, but so far the results are lackluster, and the innovations are mostly repetitions of previously seen accessories that are not particularly useful, and tend to crowd the kayak’s deck and cockpit, and reduce both the angler’s range of motion and their comfort.
In other words, Innovation isn’t always exciting or useful, and it doesn’t necessarily make a kayak more fishable.
But some innovations are both exciting and useful, such as the new W570 INF 20-15 model from Wavewalk. This Motorized kayak doubles as a high performance microskiff that’s suitable for offshore fishing trips, even in choppy water. Its small size and light weight do not compromise the impressive stability it offers – enough for the user to drive it standing. The same attributes make it a car-top boat, thus freeing the owner from the use of a trailer, which has become a must-have accessory for the new generation of large-size and heavy fishing kayaks that other companies offer. No trailer means no need for a boat ramp, and in the case of the W570 INF 20-15, it also means you can launch it from any beach where it’s legal to do so – If the water is too shallow for motorizing or infested with obstacles such as rocks or vegetation, you can paddle this motor kayak out, and start motorizing in open water.
As far as the innovations presented in this new model, they include a transom motor mount that works for both short-shaft outboard motors as well as for long-shaft outboards. Practically, this means that you can use it for different types of motors that you have, or would like to use in the future.
Another useful innovation is the high-capacity inflatable side flotation. This accessory works to help the boat from flipping in case of an accident, and it keeps it afloat in case it capsized. The wide floats are detachable, and when they’re attached to the sides of the hulls they offer the user to paddle and pole, although not with the degree of freedom and comfort they would enjoy with smaller floats.
And last but not least, the new detachable spray shield helps preventing water from splashing into the cockpit’s front end when the kayak is driven in waves at high speed. It can be detached within seconds and stored standing flat in the rear end of one of the kayak’s hulls. Being able to detach it easily enables the user to keep casting and landing fish from the kayak’s front, and not just from its sides.
This promotional video shows this amazing little watercraft in action:
Note the ease of portaging this motorized craft through rough terrain – a truly important feature for anglers who like to beach and fish where others don’t.
Where to get the best fishing kayak in New Zealand?
New Zealand has a lot to offer as far as fishing is concerned. The country has many lakes and rivers that abound with fish. Kayak fishing has been gaining in popularity in New Zealand, although many local anglers are not particularly enthusiastic about fishing from such notoriously unstable and uncomfortable boats. But this situation is now changing, as W kayaks are available locally for testing and purchase.
If you want to learn more about kayak fishing in New Zealand, or if you’ve already decided that you want to get yourself a fishing kayak, you’d probably want to visit Dennis’ fishing kayak dealership. The store is located in Hamilton, in the Northern Island, within a short short driving distance from Auckland.
W fishing kayaks are available the southern island as well, at Murray’s dealership in Nelson.
Dennis and Murray are seasoned kayak fishermen with considerable experience both in freshwater and offshore fishing, and they outfit the kayaks locally, so you can purchase a customized kayak from them or take advantage of their expertise and outfit your own kayak by yourself.
It was too windy to fish in the river so I stayed in the lagoon by where my friend lets me keep my Wavewalk kayak on his floating dock. I had been out in the morning about 7:30 AM and caught a small snook about 14 inches – a beautiful fish and since I got him on a small foam rubber “gurgler” fly it was fun to see a fish take that surface fly less than a foot from the mangroves in about eight inches of water. It took a little while reviving him in the water before releasing him before I could go looking for his big brother.
Fished until about noon got a couple of hook ups but nothing came to the boat.
I went back just about 7 PM and staked out at the corner of a nice grass flat in the lagoon next to the mangrove creek that feeds in from the Indian River.
It was low incoming tide one of the best times for the bigger fish to get in close to the flat in about four to five feet of water, they slip up on the grass flat and raid the little mullet fingerlings and grass shrimp and can dash back into the deeper water for cover.
So I fished different flies and different sides of the flat for about an hour… fifteen minutes after sunset I was making my “last cast” for the night and bang a freight train hits my fly about thirty five feet from the kayak I am standing on my platform on top of the center tunnel and all the line starts to shoot out of my striping basket and (for once it is not tangled up) whiz all the line is out of the basket probably 125 feet or so and I am on the reel and it is buzzing. First time I am down to my backing line it is still going out to open water in the lagoon
(not back to the mangroves like sneaky snook usually do). So I let him go
I mean he is too big and hot to horse in with an eight weight and 10 lb
tippet. Three good runs, a couple of tries for the mangroves and 15 minutes later I have him in the boat.
26″ snook WOW the first really nice fish I have ever caught out of the “W” and it was a beauty it took me almost 10 minutes to revive him pushing him through the water next to the boat.
But finally he swam off before I was eaten to death by Florida mosquito’s it was almost dark but I was as high as a tree frog just paddling back to the dock whistling Dixie.
I have caught a few smallish fish in the lagoon but started to think that all the nice ones are in the river.
Oh yeah all you northern woodsman who are wondering why I released a five pound snook instead of eating him, there is a limit here we call “slot” fish, 28″ to 32″ inches if they are in the slot then they are keepers but he was a little shy of the slot. And after one of the best battles I have had on fly since my Trinity river steelhead days, I figured he deserved a second chance anyway.
I love my Wavewalk… when that fish was on I was thinking he went 360 degrees around the boat did three really long runs and in general made 15 minutes feel like about three. I honestly don’t think there is any chance that this old man could have landed that fish in any other kayak but the Wavewalk fishing kayak. I mean I fish with a friend who has five kayaks SOT and Sit in type and he is an athlete, but I have seen how little room to
move and how cramped it is and if your line snags on anything when you have a big fish on a fly (even just for a moment) it is good by fish.