upgrade for fishing kayaks

Cool Upgrades for Your Fishing Kayak

For those who love kayaking, the kayak holds great value. But did you know that with cool upgrades for your fishing kayak, you can add more value and functions to your kayak?

Today we will share with the coolest gadgets that will make your kayak extra functional and super cool.

Kayaking is not just a fun activity. For some people, it is a versatile way of enjoying their day and catching fish (of course).
Thanks to kayaks, you can fish in places where a boat can’t reach. You can use it in any type of water – fresh or salty. The versatility of kayaking is one of the major attractions. So, it is high time that you upgrade your kayak and take the fun to the next level.

In this article, we are presenting a list of the best upgrades you can get this year. In this article, you will find everything including the best light, flagpole, deck padding, fish finder, storage, anchor system, camera mount and a lot more.

We have also included detailed reviews of each upgrade so that you can choose the best gadgets.

Customizing your kayak will make your journey more enjoyable as well as comfortable. So, let us start with the list of cool upgrades for your fishing kayak.

Related article: See our best kayak fishing tips

17 Best Modifications to Add More Value & Function to your Kayak

1. Gear Tracks

Gear track upgrade for kayak
YakAttack GTSL90 GearTrac

The first on our list are gear tracks. Gear tracks are a cool addition to your kayak.

When it comes to gear tracks, there is a lot of variety in the market. Furthermore, you might not find a lot of unbiased customer reviews on them. So, customers get confused if they should purchase gear tracks or not.
Lucky for you, we have done your homework for gear tracks. The best one is YakAttack GTSL90 GearTrac.
It is designed especially for harsh marine environments. So, you will find it to be reliable as well as durable.

2. Flagpole

Flagpole upgrade for kayak
YakAttack VISIpole II GearTrac

A flagpole an important and cool upgrade for your fishing kayak. It is an important measure of safety.

Flagpoles are especially vital for paddlers who like to fish during the night. Also, in high traffic areas, a kayak flagpole can help your friends find you.

So, you will find that a flagpole will be a good addition to your kayak. Many people like to make a DIY flagpole. However, those are not that durable and take time to make.

Therefore, we have gone through the best flagpoles to use. We love the YakAttack VISIpole II GearTrac.

It has a fiberglass mast with a floating base. The flag has a vibrant orange color. So, you will be able to see it from quite far.

Another thing that we love about this flagpole is that it includes a light. Light is extremely helpful when you go fishing during the evening or early morning when there isn’t enough natural light.

Many people add a light separately. However, if you combine the light with the flagpole, it fulfills the purpose better. The flag will be visible due to the light even when it is dark. Moreover, mounting the light on a flagpole is better than carrying it in your hand.

Furthermore, the light features an excellent battery life. The LEDs will burn for many hours before you need to charge them. We didn’t find any customers who weren’t happy with the long battery life of this light. The overall lamp life is more than 10,000 hours. Therefore, this flagpole and light will go on many fishing adventures with you!

Also, the company packages the batteries with the flagpole. So, you will find this flagpole to be a complete package.

3. Fish Finder

Garmin striker 4 fishfinder upgrade for kayak
Garmin Striker 4

Now, let’s discuss everything about using a fish finder for a kayak. Many people are skeptical about investing in a fish finder.

It is an effective tool that comes in handy when you are fishing. It allows you to see the fish and know where they are.

A fish finder works using Sonar technology. It serves as a great tool for finding fish. It sends sound waves of different frequencies that echo back and help you locate the fish underwater. You will be able to see a graphic representation of everything that is underneath your boat.

Furthermore, you will be able to see all the weeds, debris, rocks and sand under the boat. You can also view the precise depth on the screen.

We have reviewed many fish finders that are the best ones in the market. Our all-time favorite one is Garmin striker 4 DV.

Garmin is popular for its GPS systems. The Garmin Striker 4 DV also has a GPS. It will help you locate your favorite fishing spot. The speed can be viewed on the display screen. You can use the map to locate places such as docks and stumps. You can easily view your data with the flasher. It also lets you share the data with other STRIKERS.

The screen size is small. So, it proves to be the best for kayak fishers. Furthermore, Garmin Striker 4DV features a CHIRP sonar that helps by creating arches with greater target separation.

We assure you that a good fish finder will be the best investment you make in your kayak.

You can also read our guide to the best fish finders for kayaks.

4. Deck Padding

Deck padding for kayaks
Marine Mat Kayak Deck Padding Kit

Next, let’s talk about deck padding. One of the biggest benefits of kayak fishing is that you can easily sneak up on the fish. This is one of the major plus points kayak fishing has over boats. So, what if you drop something on the deck of your kayak? Obviously, the fish aren’t going to sit and wait for you.

This is where deck padding comes in to save the day. If you place padding around the kayak, you will be able to catch more fish. One of the best deck paddings you will find is you can find here. Look for one with around 6 mm thick double layer EVA foam. It offers excellent shock absorbing. Furthermore, it comes in two different texture choices. You can opt for a brushed texture or a dimpled one as well.

5. Anchor System

the squid anchor system
Squid anchor system

Next up on our list of cool upgrades for your fishing kayak is an anchor system. A good anchor system will help to keep the kayak nimble and hold you in place. It may not be a necessary addition, but it is certainly a good one.

Our recommendation for the best anchor system is Squid Anchor Kit. The package includes everything you need, and a storage bag along with the anchor. The rope is 50 feet long, made with polypropylene. The solid anchor comes in two weights: 1.5 pounds and 3.25 pounds. You can purchase the one that suits you.

Related article: Best electric trolling motors for kayaks

6. Storage

Earth Pak- Waterproof Dry Bag
Earth Pak- Waterproof Dry Bag

If you go on long kayaking adventures, you will need a waterproof storage container.

There is a lot of variety available. We have chosen Earth Pak- Waterproof Dry Bag.

This is a good choice because you can easily use this bag for other purposes as well. It will be your companion where ever you go, from camping to a beach trip.

Thanks to the 500D PVC material, this bag is designed with all-weather protection. It will ensure that your gear stays dry all the time.

It has separate compartments for all your things. You can save your things in the larger compartment or the smaller side pockets as well.

It comes in many different sizes. Therefore, you can easily choose the one you like. It is also easy to fold and lightweight to carry.

7. Fishing Crate

Fishing crate upgrade for kayak
Yakattack BlackPak

A good kayak crate will give you a stable platform where you can mount flags, lights, and cameras. We’ve gone through many products to choose the best one.

We found Yakattack BlackPak Kayak Rod Holder Station Fishing Crate to be the best one. It is designed with polyurethane. You will find the material to be resistant in the face of UV light. So, it is an excellent investment for your kayak.

It features an interlocking joint design that will help to create a strong frame. It is not completely waterproof, but it will help to reduce water splashes on your gear.

Also, you will find this fishing crate to be highly customizable.

8. Camera Mount

Camera mount for kayak
RAILBLAZA Camera Boom 600

Now, let’s come to our all-time favorite upgrade: camera mount. If you are going on a kayaking trip on a beautiful afternoon, you must record it. You would want to share the beauty of the waters with everyone when you get back.

We think that a camera mount is not an optional addition. It is one of the most important ones. So, we have chosen the best camera mount to be RAILBLAZA Camera Boom 600 GoPro Kayak Mount.

It is the best camera mount that you will find. It lets you hold your camera about 30 inches above your kayak. Also, it has many interlocking joints that will help you adjust the camera and get the best position. It also features five adjustment axes.

9. Seat Upgrade

Tall Back Kayak Seat
Tall Back Kayak Seat

It is time that you get a seat upgrade for your kayak. If you like to go on long trips, you wouldn’t want to ruin your time because the seat wasn’t comfortable. These premium seats from Sea Eagle is some of the best options that you will find in the market.

They are designed with a contoured back and bottom support for long-distance comfort. It also comes with a detachable storage bag where you can store important things. You will find two adjustable straps that will help you fit the seat.

This seat will also easy fit to any kayak for big guys.

10. Outriggers

Hobie Sidekick Ama Kit

Whether you are an experienced kayaker or just a newbie, you need to invest in your safety while kayaking. Outriggers will attach to your vessel and add an extra level of stability. This will ensure that you can move around with confidence.

So, let’s talk about the best outrigger that you will find on Amazon. We have chosen the Hobie Sidekick Ama Kit based on the stability it will provide you while kayaking.

It is very easy to install. Furthermore, you will find this outrigger to be very reliable. You can inflate it using a one-way valve. It will deflate within a few seconds by unscrewing the valve caps.

The entire outrigger is quite light, weighing about 5 pounds only. Moreover, its arms are made with aluminum. So, you will find it durable with both fresh and saltwater.

11. Short-Handled Paddles

Short-Handled Paddles
Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle

Another good addition to your kayak will be the best short-handled paddle. We can easily say that finding the best kayak paddle is just as vital as finding the best kayak.

You must ensure that the paddle is comfortable to hold. It should have the right length so that you can easily maneuver the kayak. Furthermore, some paddles are quite heavy to use.

Based on these aspects, we have chosen Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle to be the best handle. It is constructed with a carbon fiber shaft and fiberglass laminated blade. It weighs 27.5 ounces. So, you will find it to be lightweight and comfortable to use.

Overall, it is a high-end paddle that you will find to be quite durable over many years of usage. Its dihedral shape will give you a smooth and stable experience while paddling.

Many customers appreciated that it is the best paddle for long-distance paddling.

Also read: 10 best fishing kayaks under 1000

12. Smartphone Mapping Software

Many people use kayaking as a breather from all the technology we have around us. However, sometimes, we need technology to make our experience even more enjoyable.

We have chosen the best app based on personal experience as well as customer reviews. This app is known as Go Paddling.

Thanks to good smartphone mapping software, you can take your fishing journey to the next level.

Many people love that this app is free with excellent resources. It offers 25,000 locations that you can go through. Furthermore, you will find detailed notes about each location from other users.

You can easily mark your favorite locations and revisit them later.

13. Forward Rod Holders

Forward Rod Holders
FEELFREE Fishing Rod Holder

If you enjoy kayaking, it is time to get a forward rod holder. There are plenty available in the market.

So, we have made your life easier by going through the best products to shortlist the one you will love: FEELFREE Fishing Rod Holder for Kayaks.

Thanks to this rod holder, you will feel free! It is simple and quick to fit. This rod holder is everything that you need to convert your kayak into a fishing kayak!

14. Kayak Perimeter Line

Kayak Perimeter Line
Shoreline Marine Bungee Kayak Deck Kit

Perimeter or deck lines are used for the anchor. They will help to add an extra level of safety to your kayak.

The perimeter deck line runs along the outer edge of the deck. You can easily grab it in an emergency. It is a small investment but offers an excellent return.

Deck lines are also useful for holding items on kayak decks. We have gone through the best kayak perimeter lines. We have found the best one to be the Shoreline Marine Bungee Kayak Deck Kit. It allows you to add rigging to your kayak deck and made it secure.

The package comes with all the instructions and hardware. Also, it includes a shock cord.

15. Bow and Stern Lines

Bow and Stern Lines
Malone Big Foot Pro Universal

Next, let’s talk about the bow and stern lines. Many people ask about the best bow and stern lines for their kayak.

If you want a good bow and stern line, you need a reliable choice that gives you a good return on your money.

The most reliable one we found is Malone Big Foot Pro Universal Car Rack Canoe Carrier with Bow and Stern Lines. It is an excellent car rack canoe carrier system.

It also offers a gunwale system. However, the package doesn’t include rails. Also, you will find the material to be corrosion-free and durable.

This is an excellent choice that strikes a balance between money and quality.

16. Lower back rest

Lower back rest for kayaks
Lixada Kayak back rest

We have also included this lower back rest on our list for the coolest additions for your kayak. Personally, we love this add-on for our boat.

However, not many people use it. The best one in the market is called Kayak lower Back Rest.

Many customers appreciate the quality of this lower back rest. Furthermore, it comes at an excellent cost. So, you will find it as the perfect replacement for the backrest.

It is made with closed-cell foam. Therefore, you will find this backrest to be quite durable as well.

It is one of the best purchases you can make. This lower backrest will provide you excellent comfort for many years to come.

17. Kayak Light 

Lights for kayak
Kayalu Kayalite Kayak Light

Many people like to go out for kayaking early in the morning. It is one of the perfect ways to start the day. You will get an excellent dose of exercise early in your day as well as the energy and peace you need.

Related article: Best kayak life vests

Often, the natural light is low in the morning when the sun hasn’t risen. That should never keep yours from going fishing.

You can easily mount light and go for an adventure. There many other benefits of mounting a light on your kayak. For example, you will be able to stay visible to your friends and other boats in case of an emergency.

It will also prevent collisions with another watercraft. So, from a safety aspect, a kayak light is an essential component of your kayak gear.

We have done an extensive research to find the best light. We have found Kayalu Kayalite Kayak Light to be the best one available in the market.

It is a pole-mounted LED light that will increase your visibility when daylight isn’t enough. One of the best features of its mounting system is that it has an internal tension cable and steel clip. This ensures that the light will not fall off even if you accidentally hit it with your paddle. It might bend a little, but it will not break.

Also, it is easy to turn the light on and off with a single hand. The batteries offer up to 100 hours without charging. So, it checks all the boxes of the best light that you need.

From a safety point of view, you must install a good waterproof light on your kayak.

Final Thoughts

Getting cool upgrades for your fishing kayak will make your kayak more functional. And, a kayak with more functions is certainly an asset. The upgrades will also add more value to your kayak. Therefore, spending your money on buying gadgets for your fishing kayak will actually pay off.

Check out our tips & tricks for kayaking as a big guy

So, which upgrades do you plan to get for your kayak? Share with us.

Updated: June 16, 2022