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Kayaksailor gets an A+ for fishing

Posted: Mon May 27, 2013 11:47 pm
by DLee
I spent close to 10 hours sailing and fishing one day in Jamaica Bay, NY, last weekend. It was part of the Kayak Fishing Classic at Jamaica Bay - which supports Heroes on the Water, the Sport Fishing Alliance, and Send a Kid Fishing organizations.

Anyway, the reason this isn't in the fishing column is because the Kayaksailor worked so fantastically in this venue I had to put it here in sailing. I took the AII out, rigged for solo paddling, with three poles, tackle, lunch, a boat load of gear, and the kayaksailor. A mild breeze of about 5-10mph was fairly constant all day. I decided to sail and troll because without a working depth finder I didn't have high hopes of finding the fishing holes I surmised from the chart.

I started sailing right off the bat. Sailing steady with no surprises I decided to start trolling with the one rod that was ready to go and then do some rigging. The Aerius II's rudder was set for both pedal and tiller steering. On the tiller I added a handle extension which clips into my anchor trolley right on the port side of the boat. The trolley is a little tight so I can set the rudder in position and it will generally stay there for a nice little while.

It turned out to be easier to dig around in the tackle bag and tie rigs kneeling on the comfort seat facing the stern than it would have been to have the bag in front of me. So I sailed backwards like this for quite a while looking forward every now and then to make sure we stayed clear of traffic and other obstacles. When I finally got turned back around and was settling in to two line trolling when the first line began to sing.

Line was peeling off so steadily I figured I had a snag. A quick set though and it was obvious I had a fish on. I tried fighting the fish from my seated position turning the boat hard one way and then hard the other trying to steer towards the fish. The fish was all over the place, so was my boat handling; but the KS just flipped back and forth on it's rather tight set and never gave me a problem. Rather quickly I gave up on trying to steer the boat and turned around in my seat again to fight and land the fish while kneeling on the comfort seat. I think the fish ended up being about 28", it was a rather spastic attempt at measuring for fear of the Bluefish's very very sharp teeth. Not a great combo with a canvas and rubber boat.

Well, all said and done, fish released, mayhem restored, I turn to check our 'sailing' status and the boat is pointed straight into the wind. Sails silent, rudder pushed hard to port as it's pushed back against the sea. For all intensive purposes, we had come to a complete stop. As close to motionless in the water as I could have imagined. Without any aid from me on the sheets or steering the KS had pointed itself straight into the wind and simply stayed there. A simple straightening of the rudder to catch the wind and we were on our way again.

We did this probably a dozen times that day; the sail into the wind scenario. As soon as I would become distracted with something and not control steerage, the boat would head into the wind and park. It was great. It was also great to know that a sudden gust wouldn't throw us over while I had my back to the sail. It always dumped the stronger blasts nicely and evenly throughout the day. This Kayaksailor rig was nothing short of perfect for moving the boat around that day while fishing and working onboard.

Max speed for the day was 5.4 knots with an average of 2.5, so that will give you a little idea of the wind strength. I think I covered all of 5 NM and I really didn't paddle at all. In the stopped position where the sail would head itself into the wind and push the boat back against the rudder the GPS speed always read '0.'


dennis

Re: Kayaksailor gets an A+ for fishing

Posted: Mon May 27, 2013 11:52 pm
by DLee
The first Blue.
Image

accidental shot showing the home made tiller extension:
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standard 'set' for the day - note the flex on the Klepper mount:
Image

d

Re: Kayaksailor gets an A+ for fishing

Posted: Tue May 28, 2013 6:25 am
by gbellware
Thanks for that great writeup Dennis, great report. Sounds like you have invented a new sport: Kayak Sailfishing!

Interesting comments on weather helm with kayaksailer. I would not have thought that. The center of effort of that rig is so far forward that I would have thought quite the opposite. But sailing and kayaking are subject to really weird dynamics, I think.

Be careful with those blues, they can be nasty!

Greg

Re: Kayaksailor gets an A+ for fishing

Posted: Tue May 28, 2013 11:16 pm
by DLee
Thanks Greg, I was surprised as well which is why I figured I'd share the discovery. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens when the sails are left unattended in a stronger wind.

d

Re: Kayaksailor gets an A+ for fishing

Posted: Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:25 pm
by HeavyWeather
I will have to give this a try now that I have my kayaksailor rig sorted out. A big beamy double does make for a nice fishing kayak.