10 hard-earned lessons about big-game kayak fishing on Panama’s Wild Coast

10 things to know about Panama’s awesome kayak fishing

Experience is the best teacher, but these tips will get you up to speed

#1 You’ll quickly adapt to fishing from pedal kayaks

Dan Teage (top row) from Dartmouth, England, and Fred Simeons (lower row) from Tayport, Scotland, had never used kayaks before. It didn’t slow them down.

Let’s get this out of the way: Modern pedal kayaks are safe, stable, easy to use, and all-around incredible fishing machines. The lodge runs 12-foot Hobie Outback and Compass boats and, believe it or not, they’re arguably the most practical and effective way to fish this coast.

Every day the pangas transport the kayaks (and anglers) to promising fishing areas, and then stay close to lend a hand

Why? Many prime Pacific gamefish live around shallow rocky structure. No sensible skipper would take his boat into these spots, but they can be handily negotiated by kayak. And active anglers like myself relish the independence of making your own fishing decisions, while the guides watch from the panga, ready if you need an assist.

I’m an experienced kayak angler, but on both my visits I watched anglers who’d never been in a kayak before, climb in, and become totally comfortable with their boats in 30 minutes.

Michael Dodds from Donaghadee, Northern Ireland, battles a roosterfish, as lodge partner Sam Wadman watches

Running a couple of pangas instead of a fleet of powerboats, also vastly reduces the lodge’s fuel consumption, keeping expenses down, and adding to the place’s laid-back vibe.

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