I recently got to check one item off of my bucket list, but now I can’t wait to go again. Stand up paddle boarding or SUP is what I’m referring too. I had borrowed some boards from a friend to take my wife and daughters for our first paddleboard experience.
We were not sure what to expect, but the whole family did awesome. After only a couple hours of riding with us, my girls took a spin, on their own, and did great. We were all pleasantly surprised at how stable the boards were and like all things in life, with a little practice, we were exploring the mangroves and canals in no time.
Paddle Board Fishing
We can’t wait to get back out there and do it again. Great family bonding and badly needed exercise are a direct result of paddleboarding. My curiosity was now peaked to take the next step.
Fishing from a paddleboard is becoming increasingly popular and I’m obsessed with fishing, so to try one out became the obvious next goal. I got the chance, when my good friends invited me to venture into the no motor zone one morning for a quick fishing trip. They set me up on a BOTE Ahab which is the biggest and most stable paddleboard in the BOTE lineup.
They had a new ingenious product onboard called a PaddleFish™. The PaddleFish™ is rigged with rod holders and has versatile space for storage of my Plano box filled with the necessary assortment of swimbaits, topwater plugs and jigs. It can also be a cooler or livewell. The PaddleFish™ serves as a comfortable seat to paddle and fish from.
It is a game changer when fishing is concerned. Really it is the perfect compliment to a paddle board no matter what activity you might pursue. To be able to carry necessary items or lunch is important to all outdoor activites. It is more affordable and versatile compared to the cooler that previously has been strapped to many paddleboards. It is built to receive the many accessories that are already made for the kayak industry. It is also built tough, and can take any abuse you dish out. It has a simple attachment to the board to make it one complete package.
We launched our boards off of the bank and loaded them down with our fishing gear and stroked it across the flats. We paddled for about thirty minutes to get to a sandbar where my buddy had caught plenty of redfish and trout before. I was amazed at how stable the Ahab was, and I paddled from a seated position, which made it easy to stay balanced.
Being able to stand up and scout for fish once we arrived, the combo of switching positions made it very comfortable and the hours flew by. The fishing on this occasion was off, as a weather system had just gone through and the redfish we saw seemed to have lockjaw. What amazed me was how close we could get to the fish and they never spooked. They had no idea that I was there. We had a small anchor we slipped over the side when we wanted to stop and fish and area or watch the nervous waters ahead. The fish would swim right up to you and never spook as they often do when they get that close to a boat.
In many coastal areas, big fish will move up into skinny water that is unreachable, even by the lightest of flats boats, but the paddleboard just skims over in mere inches of water. You can explore places that feel untouched by the normal flow of fishermen and boaters.
Also the sheer simplicity is a big draw for me. My background was working as an offshore boat captain, and simple was not in the vocabulary.
It is standard procedure to prep for days in advance and clean up for days following an offshore excursion. To plop your board in and go and then just rinse it off when you’re done, guilt free was the strangest, but best feeling. I guess you could chammy your board when you’re done, but that would defeat the purpose.
I can sum up my Ahab experience with three words, stable, simple, freedom to fish. (okay five)
Give All Water Adventures a call for SUP charters and sales.
A side note BD now has a Paddleboard forum, please check it out – BD Paddleboard reports.