There are times when you have to ask yourself how many kayaks or water sport vessels you can own. For some, the answer is only one.
Whether it’s a matter of budget or storage, you can kill two birds with one stone by buying a hybrid.
If you love the idea of going out on a SUP but can’t give up on your idea of kayak fishing, you can use these hybrids to have both without needing to buy two vessels.
What Is A SUP kayak?
Just like the name says, it is a SUP that can be converted into a sort of kayak. Don’t expect it to look or behave like a traditional kayak, though.
Most of them are really exactly the same as a SUP but have rings to hook up a seat and even a pad for a foot rest for when you are paddling.
This way you can leave the deck bare for when you just want to use a paddle board as it is meant to be used and then add the gear you need to sit down and paddle like you normally would. Many even come with bungee tie downs so you can add a cooler or milk crate with all of your fishing gear in it.
Why Use A Paddle Board?
There are two types of fisherman that should be very eager to get their hands on a paddle board kayak combo. Fly fisherman and sight fishers.
You can obviously stand up on the paddle board kayak combo as this is exactly what it is made for. Then you can cast without any restriction.
In many kayaks where you can stand up, you don’t have much room and capsizing is a real concern. This is not the case with a SUP that you can fish from.
Another reason to go for a paddle board kayak combo is that you can get into areas that may be off limits for some kayaks since the hull can be under water and be interfered with by obstacles. Rocks and tree trunks or reefs under water are hazards that are not as pesky when you have a board that mainly floats on top. Though you do have to worry about the fins underneath depending on how deep the obstacle is.
Then there is the matter of wind. If you have ever used a SUP then you know how hard it can be to paddle around on a windy day. If you are sitting down and able to paddle then you reduce how much you can be blown around.
How To Convert A SUP Into A Kayak
You may have a SUP already like the Peak paddle board kayak that you want to use more as a kayak than a SUP sometimes.
Instead of buying a dedicated SUP kayak combo, you can make one yourself with this awesome SUP. the reason I would choose this one is that it is already halfway there with the design. You don’t have to do much customization to turn it into a kayak SUP hybrid.
The length gives tons of stability to be able to fish from it and it has plenty of spots to tie down your gear. Add a seat to it and now it’s a combo.. You’ll need to add a paddle holder though as you can’t use the same paddle standing up as you would sitting down in a kayak.
The best part is that it is inflatable so it is easy to transport and to store.
You can add a pair of cleats to the surface of the board that can allow you to clip on a high back kayak seat. I probably would stay away from the stadium seats as they may affect the stability.
With the Peak paddle board kayak, you only need to use the kind that get glued into place since it is an inflatable.
You’ll also need to add cleats for the footrest which is simply just a pad that you can use to push your feet against while you paddle.
The Best SUP Kayak Hybrid
If you don’t want to have to outfit a Peak paddle board kayak, then try one that is already outfitted to use as a fishing kayak/SUP combo.
Ocean Kayak Nalu 12.5 Hybrid Stand Up Paddle Board
You get the advantages of a kayak, like storage hatches and a keel for stability, with the option of using it as a SUP.
There are foot rests molded into the body so you always have control of where your feet are for the perfect position to be able to paddle freely and safely.
There are spots to place a seat so you can sit down and paddle. And footrests are already molded in so you can push off with your feet easily.
You may want to have a paddle holder so in that case you can add one to the side of the kayak with a bit of drilling.
Add a small storage bag behind the seat for all of your fishing gear and you can spend the whole day out catching fish. In fact, you can cover a lot of water since this is so fast as it cuts nicely through the water. Much better than a traditional SUP in fact.
This is a great time to be a water sport enthusiast on a budget as you have so many options to get on the water cheaply and easily. A paddle board/kayak hybrid is the best way to do this in my opinion.