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Month: September 2014

Cut It Out

Cut It Out

Andy Whitcomb 9/30/2014 Fishing is a great stress reliever. But it also causes stress: on your fishing line. This then, could lead to creating stress for the angler when the line breaks. Here are 3 ways to uses your senses to detect if the fishing […]

First Time Cooking Your Catch? 4 Things You Should Know!

First Time Cooking Your Catch? 4 Things You Should Know!

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Kayak Fishing: An Easy Way to Reach the Fish

Kayak Fishing: An Easy Way to Reach the Fish

Initially, I wasn’t a kayak fan. I thought using a kayak for fishing would require an additional skill set.  I thought it’d be a tippy platform that I would easily swamp, and that overall it’d be a pain in the neck.  During those days I would have no part of them, but then a buddy showed me his hard-chine, open cockpit kayak.  I got in and paddled and fished.  After that first experience I never looked back.

There are a lot of options when it comes to fishing kayaks, and they offer a great value if you’re looking to fish in places that are in between wading and your boat. Some you sit-in while others you sit-on (called sit-atop).  Some are propelled by paddles, some are moved by foot pedals (which move the paddles) and some are propelled by small trolling motors.  A number of them have specialized gear to make life easier, and those rod holders, comfortable seats, and even pontoons come in handy at some point.  You might not think those features are important, but if you get them you’ll wonder how you lived with out ‘em.

My kayak enables me to fish high up in an estuary, in areas that are super muddy (and where I will sink up to my knee), and across boulder fields that hold fish and destroy props. In those areas I can choose my approach.  Sometimes I will drift, other times I pull the kayak on to a bank and wade, or I will stake out so I can remain on a pod of fish.  I move in the shadows of stealth not because I am especially quiet; my kayak is.

Don’t get me wrong, my boat is not for sale. But with the kayak I don’t need to pay attention backing down a ramp.  And beyond throwing a tarp over it, no winterization is necessary.

I haven’t used my kayak in all types of waters, but I’ve fished from it in saltwater river systems, on flats, along beach fronts, along boulder fields, and on freshwater lakes and ponds. It’s opened up a lot of previously closed fishing areas to me, and I’m thankful for that.  Now is a good time to look for a kayak; a lot of shops that rent them during the season sell them off for a big time discount.  It’s been a decade since I got my first kayak, and I am glad I did.


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Tom Keer

Tom Keer

Tom Keer is an award-winning writer who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a Contributing Writer for Covey Rise magazine, a Contributing Editor for both Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program.  Keer writes regularly for over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics related to fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.  When they are not fishing, Keer and his family hunt upland birds over their three English setters.  His first book, a Fly Fishers Guide to the New England Coast was released in January 2011.  Visit him at www.tomkeer.com or at www.thekeergroup.com.

Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos

Tom Keer 9/24/2014 Whenever I see an idea that provides a solution to one of my problems I kick myself for not figuring it out on my own. After filleting fish like cod, striped bass, or other white, flaky fish I usually have a bunch […]

Get Out There

Get Out There

Andy Whitcomb 9/22/2014 Saturday, Sept. 27 has been designated “National Hunting and Fishing Day.” If you are like me, you may be thinking, “Isn’t every day a fishing and hunting day?” However, there are still a few people that have yet to experience the outdoors […]

One of the Easiest and Healthiest Fresh Fish Recipes Ever

One of the Easiest and Healthiest Fresh Fish Recipes Ever

If you’ve been looking for tips on how to cook fresh fish in the healthiest way possible, look no further. One of the easiest, tastiest and healthiest ways to prepare fish is by allowing the filets to steam inside of a banana leaf. Banana leaves create perfect natural “cooking pouches” that help to seal in the flavors and moisture of the fish (without the need for oil or butter) and can be found at most Latin American or Asian markets.

Mangrove snapper or yellowtail snapper filets are suggested for use in this recipe since they are mild fish that have a pleasant, light taste; however, any white fish filet will work. Just be sure that you only keep fish within the legal size and bag limits if you plan to catch the fish yourself.

You can also top your fish with a homemade pesto for added flavor before serving. Instructions for making an easy pesto topping are included below as well. Bon appétit!


Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit shefishes2.com or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.

How Does Time Spent in the Outdoors Contribute to Creativity?

How Does Time Spent in the Outdoors Contribute to Creativity?

Debbie Hanson 9/15/2014 Do you find yourself struggling to come up with new ideas when they used to seem to pop into your head fairly easily? Do you need to think “out of the box” for an upcoming school or work project, but aren’t sure […]

Why Leaf Peep when you can get a Full View?

Why Leaf Peep when you can get a Full View?

Tom Keer 9/11/2014 Sometimes it’s great to do things up close and personal, and hiking through the mountain trails are a great way to see autumn’s changing leaves.  But sometimes a close perspective means we lose our vision, sort of losing the ‘forest through the […]

Fitness Plan

Fitness Plan

There is a wide variation for definitions of the word, “fit.” Some of it has to do with preparation and intent. If you are trying to stay healthy and relieve stress, your plans may include exercise to “stay fit.” On the other hand, if the plans unravel because of unexpected blunders, you may “throw a fit.”

With all of the lure rigging, casting, and fish-landing action, fishing from a boat is a fair amount of exercise. And when I’m on a sunset powerboat cruise, I suppose I’m working my arms as I wave to other boats and repeatedly lift my iced tea. But some boats offer a more robust form of exercise. Kayaks, canoes, and rowboats are such a great workout for arms and back muscles that several versions of home exercise equipment mimic those motions. With their Mirage propulsion system, Hobie kayaks even can be peddled instead of paddled for leg exercise. This also frees up hands and arms for perhaps more important things like casting.

I bought a preowned boat this summer. This 14 foot aluminum boat has the room my family needs for an outing (for now). To make the boat go where we want, “Plan A” is the 9.9 hp outboard (minor exercise). “Plan B” is an electric trolling motor (minor exercise). “Plan C” is the backup electric trolling motor (minor exercise). But if those plans fail, this boat also has a “Plan D”: oars (serious exercise, especially on the river). “Plan D” actually may swap with “Plan A” on some small quiet lakes that don’t allow motors or when I want to get even more “ripped.”

As exercise goes, no matter what “Plan” you are on, propelling a water craft is definitely the way to go. Reach your target heart rate, then fish. Or, just sit back and enjoy the view on the water.


Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb is a columnist, outdoor humorist, and stressed-out Dad. He says there are “people who fish”… and there are “fishermen”.  One of the few things he knows is that he is a “fisherman”…  To the point it could be classified as borderline illness.  Sharing this obsession is rewarding, therapeutic. He likes to encourage people to “stop and smell the crappie.”  Enjoys catching fish, but gets a greater thrill out of helping someone else hook up.

Born in Florida, but raised on the banks of Oklahoma farm ponds. Now relocated to western Pennsylvania. He has fished, worked, lived all around the US.  He has a B.S. in Zoology from Oklahoma State as well…

And he met his wife while electrofishing. He has been contributing weekly to www.takemefishing.org since 2011.   

5 Boating Photos That Just Might Reduce Your Blood Pressure

5 Boating Photos That Just Might Reduce Your Blood Pressure

Debbie Hanson 9/8/2014 There is just something about the sound of the waves, the gentle rocking of a boat, and splendid natural scenery that evokes instantaneous feelings of relaxation. Studies have shown that boating is at the top of the list when it comes to […]