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Bobber With A Brain

I fly fish my favorite mountain stream with a small bobber because fly lines snag and tangle in the overhanging red willows. I throw the bobber in a riffle and play the line out over pot holes under cottonwood trees and almost always snag a brown lurking in the deep shadows; the trout fins out  from the gnarled roots to investigate the fly while swimming sideways and backwards.

When I fish the spring fed lakes in the foothills the wind blows the bobber out of the deep spring pools, the deepest in the entire state, and into the cattail reeds.  With the Bobber With A Brain I can now fish these springs in any 30 mph breeze because the unique bobber keeps the bait from drifting.

Many of the lake springs are reached only by kayak, which is great, keeping the landlubbers from pulling in the bottom feeding lunkers.  More fish feed where the oxygenated springs bubble out like champagne from ancient underwater lava tubes.  With the Bobber With A Brain I can fish with three different baits on the same line - a veritible fish buffet.  Just thread the line through the bobber tube bottom, through the foam hole and top end reddish bulb, add the sinker in the tube which adheres to the end cap magnet, attach a swivel on the bait end of the line, attach a crappie or perch jig (but you can fish for trout, bass, walleye, pike, too),  then add an egg singer at the end of the line, I can bait the line with a live shad, a worm, and salmon eggs, and then paddle over a spring, drop the line, back paddle and wait.  The bobber also casts easily.

The coolest features of Bobber With a Brain are

  • The bobber stays in place in up to 30 mph gusts.
  • The bait automatically adjusts to a certain depth,where the big fish live.
  • The bottom half of the bobber tube fills with water and the bobber snaps to attention vertically, easily seen from a distance.
  • The tight line vertical motion adds a bouncing jig motion to the bait and the fish can’t swim away with your bait. How cool is that

Mushroom Anchors

Mushroom Anchor

I once made my own kayak anchor out of an empty laundry detergent bottle and sand tied to a length of rope but the home grown anchor was too unwieldy to hoist. J hook anchors always got caught in the debris and tree roots of my favorite stream I had to cut the line to maneuver out of the quagmire.  I found that a mushroom anchor was the best option for lakes and streams.

Click the photo, left, to get a vinyl-coated one to prevent rust, and get one about 10 pounds, which seems to be the right weight; get one without flanges, one with no straight angles to snag easily on week patches.  The wide-area mushroom cup produces sufficient holding power in mud and weeds, while the vinyl-coating makes the anchor resistant to rust and abrasion. Always dry your anchor dockside or stream side to avoid transporting invasive weeds.

Scotty Kayak Rod Holders

Harmony Scotty Powerlock Rod Holder
Click photo, left.
Scotty is probably the most popular manufacturer of rod holders for kayaks, canoes, jon boats, light boats and even larger motor craft.  The Harmony Scotty Powerlock Rod Holder secures your fishing rod in place on your kayak or canoe, and includes a versatile mount so you can choose where to place it. The mount is compatible with any flat deck surface or the gunnels of your boat; once you secure your fishing rod in the holder, a positive locking ring holds it in place. Slide your rod easily in and out of the open-style Powerlock holder, and adjust the holder to set your preferred rod position. The Powerlock's universal cradle holds almost any reel style.  When purchasing any rod holder, be sure the mount come with it, often they are separate purchases. What is great about the Powerlock Rod Holder is that you need no expensive gimbals device. Scotty also makes rod holders for fly rod or the unique triple rod holder which comes with customizable mounts and holders for your fishfinder or GPS unit or any other Scotty post mounted accessories, including Bait Boards, which need an adjustable extender.

Scotty Kayak Tool and Bait Boards

When I was a kid my neighbor constructed his own two man oomiak from stretched canvas laminated with fiberglass.  I remember it was so heavy it was never launched. The Inuit fishermen of the far north make their kayaks out of stretched seal skins and the native people invented the no-mount tool and bait board for quick access to tackle and bait, balancing it on their knees as they paddled or fished.

Slidetrax Wide Kayak Dashboard
Today, tool boards have multiple cut-outs, slots and notches for storage, and often SlideTrax, ready for anglers to load up with everything from pliers and lures to bait jars or a temporary rod park. The Toolboard mounts the Slidetrax Dashboard. Slots allow it to  extend towards the paddler or partially tucked away. It also comes pre-drilled to fit a base for mounting rod holders or fish finders.  Check out the Scotty Harmony  Slidetrax Kayak Toolboard which fits nearly every kayak. Click photo, to order your own.

Hey, get Scotty's camera mount and then upload your fishing trip photos to Kayak Fishing Magazine.

Kayak Fishing Magazine is a blend of an angler social network, gear and kayak features, trip and tour and lodge reviews, and a vibrant community of enthusiastic kayak fishermen and women.  Sign up is free and you can create you own blog postings with the site, upload photos and videos, communicate with other anglers, boast about your whoppers exploits, get expert advice, and see what is new on the horizon for kayak fishing. My handle is FishShootOuts because we also produce the preeminent fishing tournament database at for all types of tournaments worldwide, including salt, fresh, ice, and juniors.  Our blog is updated weekly with fishing news at  Join us on twitter @fishshootouts

Hobie Ultimate Kayak Fishing Package

Hobie is the famous manufacturer of Hobie catamarans and other products, but did you know they also make kayak gear? The Hobie Ultimate Kayak Fishing Package will make your kayak the envy of all fishermen.  The ultimate package includes:

Three Gear/Tackle buckets with mesh storage bag
A Lowrance X4PRO-DS with RAM mount and installation kit
A Ram Tube Rod Holder and 2 Hobie Rod Holder Extensions and leashes.

The package keeps your gear organized and stored easily on the water and off with the three gear/tackle buckets.  Get to that big catch with the Lowrance X50-DS with RAM mount and installation kit; Ram Tube Rod Holder included; Hold Hobie Anchor Trolley kit.  Installation kit includes all you'll need for installation from mount to transducer.

Bass Pro Shops new Interactive Digital Catalog

Bass Pro Shops now offers its new interactive digital catalogs complete with tips and product demos.

Bass Pro Shops’ free apps mean shoppers can access catalogs and play hunting and fishing games on their iPad and iPhone.

Outdoor enthusiasts around the world have looked forward to getting their favorite Bass Pro Shops catalog in the mail since 1974. Now they can experience convenient navigation and a wealth of features by using Bass Pro Shops' new interactive digital catalogs for the iPad. The interactive catalog app is available for free at the App Store.

With the launch of the interactive catalogs, Bass Pro Shops is leading the way in retail with an app that showcases products and provides shoppers with product demonstrations, tips, and more robust product descriptions and presentations.  They have built in lots of support material such as informative videos, detailed graphics, and useful tips from their own fishing and hunting pros. These features come together to create a convenient and unique solution selling environment for the customer.  For example, if you wanted to try kite fishing, the new interactive catalog provides a short article with tips on how to get started. Then you’d see a selection of all the gear you need to enjoy that sport, from rods and reels to kites and accessories, in one convenient place.

Bass Pro Shops’ catalog app make searching for gear and expert advice faster and easier. The interactive app includes user-friendly features that allow users to tap, zoom, and scroll their way through a complete selection of outdoor gear.  Bass Pro Shops developed the catalog app for the iPad in-house, using Adobe Digital Publishing Suite.

In addition to the newly added 2014 Oculus Optics and 2014 Bass Book interactive catalogs, Bass Pro Shops also offers its 2013 Saltwater Specialist and 2013 Fall Hunting catalogs. Other interactive catalogs are planned for 2014.

Outdoor enthusiasts also can download the basic catalog app for all 28 Bass Pro Shops catalogs to their iPad or iPhone with the Bass Pro HD app. Shoppers can take their favorite footwear, shooting, hunting, optics, fly fishing, boats, lures, outdoor gear and other catalogs with them wherever they go. The Bass Pro HD app is also available free of charge from the App Store.

Bass Pro Shops also offers games for hunting and fishing enthusiasts. Gamers can download and play “The Hunt” and “The Strike” for free on their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch (requires iOS 5.0 or later). “The Hunt – King of Bucks” is a fast-paced game that tests players’ hunting and shooting skills for big game and varmints. Upgrades and power ups increase gamers’ chances of bagging a trophy with scents, calls and more.

“The Strike” features live tournaments where gamers can compete against their friends from around the world for a spot on the leaderboard. Players can cast, set the hook and reel in bass, walleye, northerns, musky, and trout just like they were really fishing.

To download the Bass Pro Shops Interactive Catalog app, visit

To download the Bass Pro Shops Catalog HD app, visit

To download Bass Pro Shops – King of Bucks, visit

To download Bass Pro Shops – The Strike Pro Angler, visit

The company’s Tracker Marine Group has produced the number one selling brand of fishing boats for more than 35 years, manufactures and sells a variety of boats for fishing and cruising. Family fun is on tap at Bass Pro Shops resort Big Cedar Lodge® (  For more information, visit  To request a free catalog, call 1-800-BASS PRO.  Follow them on Facebook at

— Feature by Kriss Hammond, Editor, Jetsetters Magazine, Jetsetters.TV and; opening photo by Dave Ovitz.