Escape with ET
Our long time ambassador for Holidays with Kids, Andrew Ettingshausen gives us the scoop on getting the kids into kayak fishing!
Andrew Ettingshausen shares some basic tips that will help your kids land a few good fish this summer from a kayak.
We glided over the sand flat and cast out our live yabbies. Live yabbies, prawns and worms are easily the best baits for summer to catch those feisty yellow fin bream, so Sienna, my 12 year old daughter, and I pumped a couple of dozen from the sand bar before the tide swept over it.
Today we were joining the new fishing craze of kayak fishing. ‘Yak fishing’ is the Aussie term and thousands of enthusiasts are paddling their way to angling success by way of these unique watercraft. With so many families living in unit blocks with no space to store a boat, the humble kayak is now the craft of choice. Looking at it from a storage point of view it really makes sense. A couple of brackets on your garage wall and you can stow your ocean kayak with ease. Get yourself some roof racks and tie downs and away you go, straight to your nearest boat ramp or sandy river frontage where all your accessories can be slipped on to make your fishing even easier.
I have been enjoying this style of fun with my family for years and all of my four daughters love getting out onto the water on a kayak. I have three ocean kayaks including a double design, which my wife Monique and I enjoy getting out on as well. For fishing there are rod holders, a place for your fish finder, a back supporting chair and watertight storage compartments for mobile phones, wallets and keys.
Out on the water Sienna’s live yabbie washed along on the incoming tide straight into the waiting mouth of a hungry bream. Her rod bent sharply as the fish swam off with great speed. Sienna just held on tight because she knew that once the line came up tight the weight of the kayak plus the fishing reel drag would tire the bream out quickly. A few minutes after the hook-up, Sienna raised her quarry
up high - it was a beautiful bream, the silver sides flashing in the sun matched the huge smile on Sienna’s face.
Fishing with kids is so much fun, and letting them enjoy the thrill of catching their own on top of a kayak is a great way to spend an afternoon. All kids need to get started is a six to seven foot rod and a 2000 size reel that’s rated around two to five kilos (I like the Shimano brand), some 5lb braided line, and some six pound mono line for the end trace. A few different sized small ball sinkers plus a packet of swivels and size 1 hooks will do the job. A yabby pump is handy if you have a river nearby with exposed sand flats.
Whether you’re fishing from a wharf, jetty boat or kayak always ensure that safety comes first. When out on the water always put a lifejacket on your child as well as yourself to play it safe.
Kayaks are an easy way to get access to our waterways. These days it is common to see anglers enjoying the peace and quiet with these sleek craft offers. There are even ‘kayak only’ fishing competitions with loads of anglers covering all ages. The ability to catch everything from bream to Marlin will ensure that this style of fishing will only get bigger. The beauty of the ocean kayaks is that they have multi uses, and holding up your catch of the week can enhance a day of family fun.
04 01 Sienna kayak fishing for bream 02 ET pumping yabbies to use for bait 03 ET with a Somerset Dam bass fishing in his ocean kayak 04 Getting the kayak geared up for fishing