Fishing kayaks range from the simple, basic designs made for one or two people to the highly customizable designs that are built for sports fishing or other special fishing applications. The more elaborate the kayak is, the more advanced equipment that can be added onto it. Popular kayak manufactures include Kona, Zencraft, Pflueger, and Tuff Tonno. Popular recreational kayak brands include Bass Pro, Kasasa, Kookaburra, Megatech, Nautilus, and Endicott.
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One type of kayak that is used extensively by sport anglers is the sit-on top fishing kayak. Sit-on top kayaks, sometimes called flat bottom or inflatable kayaks, have a flat bottom and a flexible surface for trolling or fishing. Some of the more expensive and specialized sit on top fishing kayaks have pole holders, rod holders, and specialized fishing electronics such as live bait well pumps and electronic depth gauges.
One of the most popular kinds of recreational kayak is the freestyle kayak, which is smaller than most other kinds of fishing kayaks and typically less stable. In addition, they may need some sort of support or hull modification in order to keep them stable at high speeds and over long distances. Sport kayakers who wish to fish in open waters, where they might encounter strong winds or strong swells, may need to purchase a stability device to help maintain the boat during these conditions. Kayaks with additional features such as fishing rods that have hand grips or wheel rests, built in rudder systems, trolling motors that have variable speeds, built in final drives, or electronics such as fishing GPS systems may also need to have some form of stability device.