More Great Kayak Fishing Tips From Dennis Farrier

Dennis Farrier Hobie Kayak Fishing ExpertWant to learn how to become a better fisherman? Hobie Kayak Fishing Ambassador Dennis Farrier sent this list of tips on how to become a better fisherman. I read it 3 times and will probably re-visit this list in the future. It’s great stuff!

Thank you Den for your insights and all you do to help us become better at the sport we love!

[1] If you want to become great …

  • Focus on a single species.
  • Master it.

[2] Hire a guide if you’re headed to unfamiliar water.

  • You’ll learn more about fishing a given lake from a guide than you will by fishing on your own for several months.

[3] Make sure you are in an area that has the potential of holding fish.

  • Look for places with rocks that transition into deeper water, weeds, or both.
  • If it has danger written all over it, then you have located some promising water to investigate.

[4] Use fishing line that’s as light as you can.

  • Many bass anglers tend to use fishing line that’s much too heavy.
  • I realize that if you fish for bass in heavy cover heavier line is necessary, but in most bass fishing situations it’s not.
  • Eight pound test monofilament fishing line can hold 8 pounds of dead weight without breaking at its weakest point.
  • This doesn’t take into account the bend of the rod and the drag of the reel, which both take pressure off of the fishing line as well.

[5] Check your hook points and your line for nicks

[6] A lot of anglers catch fewer fish because they’re afraid to get snagged.

  • They don’t throw where the fish are.
  • Which is near rocks, stumps, and logs.

[7] Don’t move your kayak right on top of the area you want to fish.

  • Fish the edges and work in.

[8] Slow down … most everyone fishes too fast.

  • Don’t flip out a lure and immediately reel it right back in.
  • Toss your line out and let it sit there…
  • Reel in your line until there’s no slack left.
  • Wait 30 seconds – and more at times. This alone will do wonders to your fish count.

[9] Change up your retrieve.

  • Don’t cast and retrieve in the same manner and at the same speed every time.
  • Snap and even jerk your wrist towards you to stir up some vibration, and commotion in the water.

[10] Going to another spot isn’t always the answer.

  • Instead of moving, sit tight and slow your presentation down

[11] Test a reasonable amount of techniques, baits and presentations for a period no longer than 20 minutes or so before moving on to another location.

[12] Keep switching your lures (every 10 minutes) if you aren’t catching anything!

[13] Don’t lose your focus

  • We all tend to do best when we first start fishing
  • After a few hours we loose our focus.

[14] If you start to see fish following your baits back to your kayak and not committing … this usually means you need to slow down your retrieve.

[15] The first bait I reach for when it’s time to slow down is a drop shot.

  • One of the biggest mistake anglers make with this presentation is thinking of it only as a vertical presentation.
  • Don`t be afraid to make long casts with a drop shot, and slowly work and shake it all the way back to the boat.

[16] The absolute best time to be fishing is in the early morning, right before the sun rises.

  • The bass are hungry.
  • If there is a full moon, then the bass are least likely to be biting because with the light from the moon they have been feeding all night.

[17] When you re-spool your spinning real with fresh mono …

  • You can solve the line twist problem by taking your spool off the reel and running it under hot water for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • This changes the memory from the manufacturer’s spool size to your spool size.
  • This allows longer, smoother casts with less twists and knots.

[18] Always sharpen your hooks.

  • Even new hooks that are of less quality that are not sharp out of the package.

[19] One of the most over-looked noises an angler makes, is actually their cast.

  • When fishing shallow water, use an underhand cast with a low trajectory to the water.
  • Don’t use the overhead long bomb, that, scares the heck out of fish.

[20] Fish attractant …

  • Put it on your hands – like hand lotion – rather than squirting it on a lure.
  • It actually doesn’t “attract” fish.
  • It keeps a fish on your bait for a few seconds longer

[21] If your pliers ever become rusty and you need to free them up quickly, put them in some pop. The acids in the pop free the pliers up in a couple of minutes.

[22] So you’ve caught a fish of a lifetime and you don’t have a scale or measuring tape.

  • Cut a piece of your fishing line the same length and girth of the fish and put that in your pocket to measure when you get home.

[23] Let the wind dictate your plan of attack on any given structure.

  • The majority of fish will face the wind waiting for food to come to them.
  • Present your baits in the same natural manner to increase your odds.

Den Farrier
Ambassador – Hobie National Fishing Team