More and more anglers switch from boats to fishing kayaks these days. While a boat will allow covering a bigger surface on water, kayaks come with a series of benefits. On the same note, many kayak users switch from the classic shape to a fishing alternative – it is all about entertainment and going back with a bag full of fish.
Whether you count the tranquility of fishing a creek inlet or the cost efficiency, fishing kayaks represent an option that draws lots of attention. Although it might sound exciting at first, the truth is that kayak fishing is not for everyone. Do not just dive in to buy the first thing you can find, but do your homework upfront and determine whether it can raise to your necessities.
Fishing kayaks come in a series of sizes and prices. Some of the high end models feature lots of functions, bells and whistles. If you are not interested in spending a fortune, you should know that you can find a quality fishing kayak under $600 without too much hassle – it is all about researching the market for the right option.
It all starts with understanding the benefits of kayak fishing. Once you know what to expect, you can determine whether it is for you. Find out what to look for when buying a fishing kayak, but also discover the top rated products in this segment and find out what makes them stand out in the crowd.
- 1 Benefits of Using a Fishing Kayak
- 2 How Fishing Kayaks Work
- 3 Top 4 Best Fishing Kayaks Under 600
- 4 What to Look for in a Fishing Kayak under 600 Dollars
- 5 Conclusion
- 6 Frequently Asked Questions
Benefits of Using a Fishing Kayak
A good fishing kayak comes with plenty of advantages.
When compared to a boat, a kayak is easy to launch literally anywhere – no boat ramps needed. You only need access to the shores. Transporting it depends on the type of kayak you have – some of them are inflatable and can go into a backpack, while hard models can be transported by car.
At the same time, a kayak can access most types of water. Boats need deeper bodies of water, while a kayak will allow you to go anywhere. Explore small ponds, backwaters and even narrow streams. The more remote the body of water, the less pressure the fish is under. In other words, fishing becomes much easier.
Fishing with a boat is easy – anyone can do it. Fishing with a kayak is a continuously learning curve. Basically, you will always learn and gain experience. How come? Easy! If you have a boat, you will be tempted to move from one place to another when the fish goes away from you.
With a kayak, you do not have so much freedom. You will have to adapt, so you will gain experience and patience.
Quiet and Efficient
While fishing involves lots of fun as well, catching some fish is by far the main reason wherefore people do it. Finding the best fishing kayak under $600 comes with a quiet and low profile operation too. Simply put, you have the stealth to sneak up on all kinds of fish. When trying to catch something, being quiet is the key.
Polling is the optimal solution to keeping the noise down. Even an amateur fisherman knows that noisy areas will chase fish away.
How Fishing Kayaks Work
Many of the fishing techniques associated with kayaks are similar to those used in general boats. There are a few differences in the overall setup, organization and equipment. The design is similar to classic kayaks, yet the fishing alternative is normally wider than average. It adds to the angler’s stability when fishing while standing.
While even a contemporary kayak can be fitted with fishing accessories and tools, the truth is that nothing is better than the modern fishing kayak, especially since it was proven that fish can be taken at way lower speeds. This aspect showed that kayaks can be at least as efficient as boats. Apart from extra width, extra storage is also a characteristic of fishing kayaks, as anglers obviously require some room for gear and fish
There are more types of kayak fishing, with soft baiting being one of the leading choices. It relies on weighted jig heads, as well as rubber soft lures that imitate bait fish. This option is clean and does not require messy live baits, which can prove quite uncomfortable in a kayak.
Some anglers go kayak fishing well offshore and they launch from large boats. They mostly do it for the excitement, as large fish can be quite powerful and pull the kayak.
Top 4 Best Fishing Kayaks Under 600
Going with one of the top rated fishing kayaks will prevent a series of unexpected situations.
BKC UH-FK184 Single Fishing Kayak
Available in a few different colors and featuring five rod holders (one articulating fishing rod unit and four flush mounted units), this fishing kayak under 600 allows using more poles simultaneously for a higher chance to catch something.
It comes with a small waterproof pocket for valuables – your wallet, a book or keys. It is also fitted with two waterproof hatches. A secure paddle parking function allows leaving your paddles in water without being afraid of losing them.
While there is plenty of storage in the front too, most of it goes in the back. The rear has a hollowed out cargo space enhanced with bungee straps for security. You can easily bring in most of your fishing gear and accessories without risking anything.
Worried about transportation? You have four carrying handles. The kayak weighs around 44 pounds. An adult will be able to safely move it around. If you have a friend, transportation is a piece of cake.
- Easy to transport
- Paddle safety
- Lots of storage
- Waterproof storage
- Multiple rod holders
- Seat feels a bit uncomfortable
- Heavy for elders
Vibe Kayaks Fishing Kayak
This sit on top fishing kayak under 600 from Vibe Kayaks measures nine feet and weighs 46 pounds. It is easy to carry around for one adult, yet it depends on the fitness level. The full package includes a seat and a paddle, so you only have to bring your fishing gear. In terms of transportation, you also have four easy grip carrying handles.
The top features not less than four capped flush mount rod holders. You can set four of them at once and boost your chance to catch something. You also have a mounting point for various accessories, such as Scotty or RAM gear.
You can forget about storing the paddles on top of the kayak when not in use because this model allows resting them in water. You have two parks to keep them out of its surface, yet secure.
When it comes to storage, you have plenty of options. There are two hatches – both sealed – with bag inserts, as well as a rear tank fitted with bungee straps.
- Lots of storage
- Easy to transport
- More rod holders
- Paddle parks
- Too compact for bass fishing
- Seat is not perfectly secure
Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-Person Fishing KayakLifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak
Designed to accommodate two people and enough fishing equipment for both of them, this could be the best fishing kayak under 600 if you want value for money. It is an inflatable model – easy to move and transport due to its lightweight profile.
Despite being inflatable, it is extremely strong and durable. It comes with a solid 17 gauge PVC design, which is rugged and suitable for lake uses. The bottom is made of 1000D tarpaulin, while the cover is based on 840D nylon – excellent mix against punctures.
The kayak consists of more chambers. If somehow one of them is accidentally punctured, the others will stay inflated. You will not get wet, but safely make it to the shores. At the same time, the airtight system is guaranteed to never leak.
Hands free fishing is simple with the Berkley quick set rod holders, while the trolling motor fittings leave room for flexibility. Paddle holders keep the paddles attached to the kayak when not in use – no more sinking paddles.
- Solid and well built
- Puncture resistance and multiple air chamber design
- Hands free fishing
- Paddle holders
- Will never leak
- Might feel hard to control due to its width
- Backrest could be a bit too low
Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak
Based on high density polyethylene for an outstanding durability, Lifetime’s fishing kayak under 600 features a flat bottom for stability and is UV protected – it will always maintain its looks. You can also purchase it in a package including a paddle. The build includes stability chine rails too.
There are a few different positions to rest your feet, so it can accommodate anglers of more sizes. The seat back is padded and comfortable, but also adjustable. You have more cord straps in front and at the back.
There are two fishing rod holders – flush mounted, as well as a top mount unit. When it comes to storage, there are two different places – one in the back and one in the middle. They can hold both small and large valuables.
A paddle keeper will keep your paddle on the surface and prevent losing it, while the T handles allow an easy transportation.
- Easy to transport
- Lots of storage
- Multiple footrest positions
- Adjustable seat back
- Durable design
- Long uses can get uncomfortable
- Some accessories must be purchased separately
What to Look for in a Fishing Kayak under 600 Dollars
There are certain things to pay attention to when hunting the best fishing kayak under 600.
Knowing where you will paddle can determine the length. Shorter kayaks are suitable to small bodies of water, as well as narrow streams. Given their length, they are quite easy to turn and maneuver. If you go into large bodies of water, you will need a longer one. Longer means wider too, so you have enough size to cut through water more efficiently. The extra size also helps if you get hit by a small wave.
Finally, if you are about to engage into a long journey and explore offshore, you want the longest kayaks you can find.
When going on estuaries, bays and lakes, you need stability. Stability relates to how the kayak behaves when stationary. On the other hand, going on the ocean or streams might require more abilities – such as secondary stability. Secondary stability refers to how stable the unit feels when rocked.
Which hull shape defines which type of stability? If it is relatively rounded, the hull underlines secondary stability. If it is V shapes, you can count on primary stability.
A sit on top fishing kayak under 600 bucks comes with a low price, stability and a tough build. A recreational unit has more secondary stability and works as a sit in a kayak – enclosed cockpit and more protection.
Transportation is about practicality. A kayak trolley will take the weight over and pass it to the trolley. On another note, if you do not leave near water, how do you plan to get it there? If the kayak is inflatable, you can take the air out and dump it on the back seat. If it is not, you will need a car mount or a trailer.
Car mounts are more common because they are inexpensive and highly adjustable.
Storage goes in the same category with the transportation. You might benefit from storing the kayak at a boat ramp or something similar, so you do not have to take it home whenever you are done. Some kayaks come with scupper holes for drainage and chain fittings – ideal to store publicly and keep it safe.
If none of these options works, your garage could be the best choice, unless it is inflatable – it can go anywhere then.
Inflatable or Solid
Inflatable kayaks are extremely strong and sturdy these days. When inflated, they feel just as hard as solid kayaks. They come with more benefits, such as an easy transportation, not to mention storage. They can go into a large backpack, while storing them should never cause any issues.
Solid kayaks represent a more reliable option because they are less likely to get punctures. They get dents instead. On a negative note, transportation might be more challenging, as they are way heavier than inflatable alternatives.
If you think the color is all about personal preferences, you are terribly wrong. In fact, colors are more about safety. Unless you have your own lake, you should opt for a highly visible color. Just because a vibrant blue kayak looks good, it may not be a good idea because you are impossible to notice on water.
Solid bright colors represent the best choices out there – for this reason, orange and yellow and quite popular. They stand out even when in low light. If the area is safe and you want maximum efficiency in fishing, opt for the sand color, as you can easily hide from the fish.
Finally, your personal skills and expectations are among the main considerations when looking for the best fishing kayak under 600. For instance, if you are a newbie, you should start with a short kayak and practice on still water. It has more primary stability and allows gaining some experience. Sit on top and recreational fishing kayaks are both great.
The more experienced you are, the longer your kayak can be. The longer it is, the greater the distances it can cover. Such kayaks have less primary stability, but they have more secondary stability. Therefore, they can be used on pretty much any type of water.
Considering your fishing locations is just as important – know the type of water and always double check the weather conditions.
As a short final conclusion, there is quite some information when looking for a good fishing kayak, especially if you do not want to spend a fortune. It might be hard to find a middle solution between quality, good specifications and price, but not impossible.
When you know what to look for in a kayak, you can make a final decision with more confidence. There are literally hundreds of models out there, yet most experts recommend going in two directions – a reputable manufacturer and a well rated product.
A reliable manufacturer will provide a good customer service, but it also has the experience to design quality units based on actual research. As for the product, when thousands of people recommend it, there is definitely something good about it.
Remember that no matter how good a fishing kayak under six hundred dollars seems to be, it will be completely useless if it cannot meet your personal necessities. From this point of view, you will also have to analyze your skills, expectations and needs before deciding on a particular model.
Knowing all these, it is a matter of time until you make the right decision.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is kayak fishing fun?
Absolutely. Everything about it is fun – from catching the first prey to being dragged by a large fish. Pretty much every newbie will get a feel for this activity and sooner or later, most of them become addicted to the fun associated with it.
Which kayak is the best for me?
There is no such thing as the best kayak on the market because what works for some people does not work for everyone else. You will have to consider your needs, skill level and expectations before deciding, yet a few recommendations are quite handy.
What do I need to start kayak fishing?
First of all, you need a kayak. Most of them come with a paddle, but this is not a general rule. These two elements are mandatory to start kayak fishing. Other than that, find a way to take your kayak to the water and you are ready to go.
What is the average lifespan of a fishing kayak?
It depends on multiple factors. For example, inflatable kayaks are rated to be less durable than solid kayaks. It also depends on how often you use them, not to mention potential damage from various elements. A well maintained kayak can last for decades though.
How can I maintain my fishing kayak?
Keep an eye on the hull and inspect the rigging every once in a while. Emergency gear must be up to date, while old accessories should be replaced with new alternatives. Keep the kayak clean and shield it from the sun if you want it to look good for longer periods of time. Also, when not in use, cover the cockpit. It keeps dirt, dust and damaging elements away. Off season maintenance is just as important, as well as storage.