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Is There a Kayak Fishing Season?

If you are wondering if there is a “season” for kayak fishing, the answer is. . . anytime the fish are biting is a good time to go kayak fishing! As long as you can safely get out on the water, you can fish from your yak.

So, what are the limits and when is the best time to kayak fish, you might wonder.

1. Weather can limit kayak fishing.

Whether you live in northern climes or the tropics, you still need to pay attention to the weather. Certain times of year are going to be more limiting than others. If your stomping ground is home to snow, ice, and blizzards, you are going to be limited in your ability to safely get out on the water. If your environment is home to typhoons or hurricanes, afternoon thunderstorms, or crocodile mating seasons (is that a thing??), you will need to adjust your kayak fishing accordingly.

But don’t let all “bad” weather deter you. A few inches of rain can get fish active. A windy, overcast day might mean that fish have let down their guard. As long as the water temperature stays above 55 degrees, you can get in some excellent fishing.

Be aware of your environment. Don’t launch if there is a risk of dangerous weather. For some that might mean winterizing and storing your kayak. For others, you might be able to launch your yak year round.


2. Accessibility can limit kayak fishing.

Sometimes, your ability to access launch sites will be limited for a season either because of closures or difficulty getting to a put-in spot at different times of year.

However, these can also be times when your kayak works to your advantage as it is easier to slip into the water than a bass boat or motorized craft. As a kayak angler, you might have more fishable months than boat fishers. This also means that the waters are less crowded as recreational watercraft are absent. Take advantage of the less popular months. You might find the fish are more willing to bite.


3. Fish behavior can limit kayak fishing.

Of course, the best time to fish is when the fish are biting. Depending on where you live some of the best times to drop a line are late winter and early spring and (perhaps surprisingly) fall. Fish are most active in the spring when they are spawning. They also get a second wind in the fall when they are carb-loading for winter. Migration, spawning, etc can all impact when the fish are biting.

You might be surprised to learn some of the things that can impact fishing. As we’ve already mentioned, fish might actually be more active right after a rainstorm. They have also been found to be impacted by a full moon. You might discover poor fishing right around the time the moon is on full display. Some fish have a 12 hour feeding schedule where they are active at night and then again in the early afternoon. Take some time to learn the patterns in your area and it might pay off big time.


4. Rules & Regulations can limit kayak fishing.

In addition to the limitations listed above, there can also be defined fishing seasons for the area where you live. For example, state & local governments can regulate what type, how many, and when you can fish for certain species. 

In some areas, you can’t target trout during their spawn. Other areas limit bass fishing during May-June while they are nesting. Many areas require a fishing license. In some places, you must catch and release.

Make sure to check the requirements for your area so that you don’t find yourself paying fines or losing your fishing season all together. 

Working within these limits, you can have limitless adventure fishing from your kayak. Happy paddling!

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