Everything You Need to Know to Get Into Freshwater SUP Fishing

The standup paddleboard trend appears to have been using in excess of the outdoor house

The standup paddleboard trend appears to have been using in excess of the outdoor house in new decades. It’s tough to enterprise to a lake, river, or shoreline devoid of observing the the significant boards out and about, paddlers effortlessly navigating the water with seemingly easy strokes. SUPs current a stable work out prospect, a enjoyment floating possibility for sunset cocktail hour and a new way to tour waterways with close friends.

But for a subset of SUP people, these floating boards have also modified up a different beloved pastime: fishing.

Two women fish from stand-up paddleboards on Oregon's John Day River.
Picture: Jess McGlothlin Media

Fishing from a SUP is a excellent notion at periods and not at other people just as it’s a healthy for some anglers and maybe not the best possibility for particular people. For the two spin fishers and fly anglers, it offers a new way to check out waters you might have or else cruised appropriate previous in the boat. SUPs draft considerably shallower than the normal raft, drift boat or bass boat—often as minimal as 5 inches with fins—allowing entry to water that or else is unreachable.

For reasonably healthy paddlers with reasonably excellent balance who are navigating nevertheless or sluggish-moving waterways, paddleboards are a highly-mobile fishing platform. It’s remarkably easy to decide up the paddling stroke, and with the possibility to fall to one’s knees in turbulent water, there is no explanation to be intimidated by hoping out a SUP for the to start with time.

There are many paddleboard iterations on the market now: from surf hybrids, fishing-precise boards, health and fitness-minded SUPs and even gigantic, eight-man or woman mega boards. And all paddleboards tumble within just just one of two classes: either inflatable or tough (in some cases called fiberglass or epoxy boards).

Inflatable SUPs have developed in attractiveness in excess of the previous various decades, and for excellent explanation. Deflated, they generally roll up to healthy into a large backpack, featuring easy transportation and storage. The sheer displacement of the boards usually means they’re rather stable (broader or thicker board are even extra so), and they are highly strong, displaying spectacular tolerance for accidental bumps into rocks on the river. Believe about rowing a raft as opposed to a tough-sided drift boat the raft will fare better when you rub that hidden rock in the center of the river.

SUPs and rafts wait on the edge of a river.
Picture: Jess McGlothlin Media

Tricky boards, definitely not rather as easy to transport or store as their inflatable brethren, are a bit extra agile and present better glide—important for health and fitness lovers and touring SUP people. Supplying better velocity and a extra successful ride at extended distances, many tough boards can be applied for SUP surfing as perfectly.

For anglers, however, inflatable boards are the too much to handle trend, mainly thanks to their security and relieve of transport. For fishing, search for an inflatable board with a planing hull—the entrance of the board will surface vast and flat (with no V-shape on the bottom of the board), which gives security and excellent maneuvering.

In contrast, displacement hulls have a pointed nose and contoured bottom, and even though they slice by way of the water extra effortlessly, featuring improved electrical power and a a lot quicker ride, they are a bit considerably less stable for the again-and-forth fishing.

Woman on stand-up paddleboard navigates the John Day River in Oregon.
Picture: Jess McGlothlin Media

Many new SUP anglers are so involved with the believed of falling in that they disregard equipment firm on the boat. The last matter you want is for a substantial-finish rod to be tipping off the aspect of your board or underfoot as you’re hoping to paddle. Many manufacturers present suction-on rod mounts, built to ride on the entrance of the board and maintain your rod in a ahead vertical placement, preserving it out from underfoot and properly secured until finally you need to have it. It’s a worthwhile financial commitment for the two relieve of use and peace of intellect.

Make investments in a excellent water-proof bag or situation (I favor the YETI Hopper Flip 12 Cooler) and strap it to the entrance portion of your SUP. This gives you a “hub” for deal with/fly packing containers, water bottles, PFD … anything that you don’t want to roll off the boat. Use the SUP’s bungee method or strap the bag to your board, and continue to keep it closed snugly when not in use. The objective with on-board storage is to continue to keep items perfectly-fixed. If the board in some way flipped in excess of (highly not likely), would your equipment nevertheless be connected when you flipped it again in excess of? Make guaranteed that it would be.

Dry baggage are also a favored for people goods you want to continue to keep close, like sunscreen, a mobile mobile phone or keys. Obtain a primary roll-best product like the Discovery View Dry Bag, and continue to keep it sealed and buckled all over a strap. It’s an easy way to continue to keep arranged and can go with you if you pick out to prevent and depart your board on the seashore for a even though. Some anglers like to convey along a entire-sizing cooler, positioning it mid-board as a seat even though paddling. It can incorporate a large amount of bulk and restrict your maneuverability on the boat, so make certain you nevertheless can shift and paddle easily if you pick out to convey just one along.

SUPs are not exempt to the guidelines of the river. Courtesy all over other watercraft is paramount, primarily on busy waterways with many other anglers. Never be that paddler that makes the “drift boat” guys detest on SUPs for the relaxation of their lives. Push all over other peoples’ boats with affordable house in amongst (SUPs are extra maneuverable than most greater boats). Observe for angler’s casting lanes and regard the house, just as you would in any other watercraft. Smile, wave and engage in like a massive kid.

Specially for people newer to paddleboarding, keep in mind you don’t need to have to be a rock-star, 60-foot caster when fishing from a board. In actuality, it’s better if you’re not. Fishing from a SUP provides improved maneuverability and stealthiness, so don’t be frightened to shift perfectly within just your casting comfort and ease zone and continue to keep your casts close as you get applied to the experience of casting from a smaller platform. Casting from a board is a new experience and will likely come to feel wobbly at to start with, but just after a little bit of practice it’s remarkably stable (and relatively successful).

Floating lines are typically less difficult to control from a SUP, and think about bringing along a stripping basket (milk crates make fantastic makeshift baskets) to pool your stripped line into. Eyeball the entrance of your SUP and reduce surfaces that could most likely snag your line. Flip D-rings down, protected the fasteners on your box or bag and continue to keep every little thing streamlined—this will go a extended way to stopping the frustrations that in some cases appear from taking care of fly line on any form of boat.

Woman fly-fishing from SUP on Oregon's John Day River.
Picture: Jess McGlothlin Media

Perform all over on the board in advance of you ever decide up a rod on the SUP get applied to dropping to your knees and popping up once again, adjusting your course with small paddling, and just moving all over on the boat. Pick up your rod and place the paddle down lengthwise on the boat, amongst your feet, and practice switching again-and-forth.

The wind can have a unpleasant routine of kicking up just as you hook into a fish, and at some position, you will find oneself juggling the two a rod and a paddle, hoping to correct your drift even though taking care of a fish. A minimal practice in advance will make the juggling approach substantially smoother.

And and finally, continue to keep ‘em wet! Drop to your knees when dealing with fish, leaning gently in excess of the aspect of the SUP and taking away the hook with small dealing with. “Keep ‘em wet” is a movement built to assist anglers launch fish with small pressure: minimizing air publicity, doing away with get in touch with with dry surfaces, and reducing dealing with. Try to prevent bringing fish onto the board most fishing SUPs are stable sufficient it’s rather easy to fall to your knees and lean in excess of, or even sit astride the board even though taking care of a fish. Do your element to assist make certain a healthful launch so somebody else can catch that identical fish in the long term.

A woman releases a smallmouth bass caught while fly fishing from a paddleboard on the John Day River in Oregon.
Picture: Jess McGlothlin Media

Fishing from a SUP provides a new expertise for seasoned anglers, and an attractive intro into fishing for watersports lovers. For people hunting to get in a work out even though fishing, have close friends who paddleboard, or are just hunting for a little something diverse, it’s a genuinely enjoyment way to enjoy the water, challenge one’s fishing abilities, and quite possibly tumble in enjoy with a new sport.

Anglers who are applied to fishing from kayaks or canoes will find their skill to location fish substantially improved even though standing, and soon will find their interest on the fish, not on their balance.

Notes on Gear

Any SUP that is reasonably vast and thick (many boards run 32- to 34-inches vast some, like BOTE’s Rackham Aero are as vast as 38 inches, featuring improved security) will function fantastic as a fishing platform. Some, like Human body Glove’s Mariner, are promoted as fishing-precise boards with features built for the angler: attachment details for rod holders and an anchor line method. NRS’s Heron features two aspect chambers that inflate for extraordinary security, acting like outriggers—rendering the craft a minimal considerably less successful for extended paddles but extremely stable for angling.

And of course, it’s intelligent to pack along the requisite safety equipment. Dress in a everyday living jacket (PFD)—there are so many minimalist, comfortable selections on the market there is no justification not to. If you’re crossing turbulent water, think about a leash so, in situation you element means with your board, you continue being tethered. Obtain a paddle that fits your personal desires anglers typically look for out ergonomic, light-weight paddles and break down into a few pieces for easy storage and transportation. Insert in light-weight, sunshine-protecting garments and a tube of sunscreen and you’re excellent to go.