There are more ways to get out of the water now than ever before. It’s an exciting time if you dream of moments on the big blue, and you have plenty of options to get out there. From fishing specific kayaks with pedals, and outriggers, to shallow water skiffs, and canoes that you can pole along your favorite flat, the world is your oyster… well, in this case, the water is your oyster.
One vehicle that literally stands out, or up, I should say, is the increasingly popular SUP or stand up paddleboard. You are probably thinking back 5 years ago when your local water ways consisted of boats and kayaks, and not much in between but now gazing out at the horizon it’s easy to spot stand up paddlers fishing from their crafts, practicing yoga, racing, cruising, duck hunting, and the list goes on and on. Stand up paddleboarding has quickly become one of the fastest growing outdoor sports, and with good reason. It has a low barrier to entry, the boards are more stable than you would expect, it’s a phenomenal workout and you can merge some of your favorite activities with stand up paddleboarding, add that all up and you have the recipe for an explosive new sport.
If you ask Kyle Schaefer and Kent Scovill of Tidal Roots (www.tidalroots.com), an Outdoor company that hand builds custom and retail wooden SUPs in southern Maine out of domestic and reclaimed wood, you will likely get an ear full about SUP fishing. After years of kayak fishing the founders stumbled upon SUP fishing and gave it a whirl.
With a first careful step upon the deck of a 12-foot fishing board Kyle remembers his first outing well: “Fishing from a SUP allowed the ultimate mobility of the cast, enabling an increased window in which I could present a fly.”
You will find Kent and Kyle patrolling the flats of New England searching for striped bass in the spring, summer, and fall. “It’s changed the game in terms of sight fishing. We can get to places we haven’t been able to reach before and best of all, fish are uninterrupted by our stealthy approach,” Kyle continued on.
There are certainly still plenty of skeptics out there but it seems that stand up paddleboard fishing is here to stay.
Tidal Roots co-owner, Kent Scovill has a hunch as to why, “It’s the freedom of movement and intimacy with your environment in which SUP fishing allows me to connect to the outdoors.” As fisherman our time on the water is often defined by a peaceful escape from whatever robs our time during the week like jobs, and bills, maybe jury duty if your lucky. SUP fishing helps to halt the world and connect the angler to the outdoors.
Now, we challenge you… Whether you are in the Rocky Mountain west fishing freestone streams for trout, the Midwest for large mouth bass, or Florida for bone fish, there is likely to be an outfit that rents stand up paddleboards in your neighborhood.
So what are you waiting for, haven’t you always wanted to walk on water? Grab a couple friends, throw a board or two on top of your trusty Tacoma and head to the water. When you hook your first big fish, and you hear that reel screaming while the bow of your board pushes wake… you will thank me because there is absolutely nothing like it.