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Jan 23rd, 2013
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What is your emergency plan if you capsize? #12485519
10/31/17 08:03 AM
10/31/17 08:03 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 18,666
NRH, TX
buda13 Offline OP
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Over the weekend Jons3825 and I rescued a kayaker that had capsized, his yak had suctioned upside down to the water so he couldn't flip it... not sure that he could have climbed back in it if able to flip it over anyway. The guy was a mile or so from shore, water temp was mid 70's but air temp was about 41 degrees. He had on a lifejacket, but with all the cold weather gear he was wearing the life jacket was not really working very well. Having been in the water with a 100 MPh suit and all the under clothing I was wearing I can vouch that its like having an extra 200 lbs of weight strapped to you when trying to get out of the water. Fortunately we were fairly close by and able to come to his rescue, dude was struggling big time, no doubt in my mind if we were not there he doesn't make it to shore. My question for you fine folks that kayak fish, especially in the winter, what is your plan should you find yourself in a similar situation? Warm weather and water I could totally understand this not being an issue, but when layered clothing and hypothermia get thrown into the mix that's a totally different ball game. Do you stay near shore? Stay close to the launch? Fish in pairs? This fella got the bejesus scared out of him, was putting his kayak up for sale as soon as he got home.





Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12485933
10/31/17 11:24 AM
10/31/17 11:24 AM
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Lewisville TX
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Searsay Offline
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1) wear your gear & appropriate gear
2) watch the weather (wind/water temp) and plan appropriately with your gear - always assume you'll be hampered by something and at 50% capacity if you fall in the water.
3) Plan ahead - what this planning entails depends on the above

so for cold weather -
1) when and where possible try to go with a partner (cannot emphasize this enough... and STAY in reasonable distance of them!) That said... a bad partner who doesn't prepare is worse than no partner.
2) really really watch the weather - especially the wind here in texas
3) on freshwater - I personally stay within a few hundred yards of shore - basically - i have to be able to swim it while all decked out in my cold weather gear + possibly towing a kayak in about 5-7m to get to shore/onto land. my waders + clothing + life jacket = i float like a boat and swim like a floating log at about 25% of my "summer" speed - that said - surprisingly the gear keeps you warmer than expected even in the cold water since i prevents the water from circulating around most of your body.
4) test out your gear/options (righting kayak and what have you) in a pool! (helps if you have a heated hot-tub for warming back up after the testing.

Saltwater is a bit similar - but with more variables due to tide, waves, shoreline differences.

The above does limit some of the areas that i can fish in the middle of winter - and some of the distance things get mitigated by going with larger groups or with a boat mixed in. I've seen way to many accidents happen - mother nature will get you, you will turtle, and you will make mistakes - it is all about managing the risks you do take so you can have fun & survive even in the bad situations.

For me personally the fishing limitations these safety considerations place on me actually make me a better fisher - i have to think more about where/what/how I'm fishing. Be more targeted in my gear and bait selections. In all honesty a few hundred feet/yards from shore gets you a LOT of fishing structure/depth on most lakes.

Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486053
10/31/17 12:45 PM
10/31/17 12:45 PM
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Denton County
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I agree with above.

Stay close enough to shore to swim, go with a buddy for sure! We also carry water proof VHF radios, that float and have a long length of hi-vis pool noodle they are tied to. These of course can reach your partner AND have access to the emergency channels. Cell phone is in a dry bag and can be accessed as well.

All that said; dont capsize in the first place! Know the weather, know your yak, know your level of experience and ability, plan ahead. If I dont feel comfortable going out, I dont go. Even with all that, it could still happen, but my main plan is stay out of the water #1 ha ha.

Glad the guy was ok and that you and Jon got there to help him out. The fact that this made him want to go right home and sell his yak tells me he aint cut out for the yak life.


Originally Posted By: junbengreat
Pulled a gun on his dryer and they caught a bunch of fish.
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486070
10/31/17 12:55 PM
10/31/17 12:55 PM
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Dallas, TX
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Make good decisions. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

The body of water you are fishing should correlate with the kayak you are fishing from (don’t go on Texoma or to the gulf with a $200 Walmart kayak). You and your equipment should not exceed 2/3 of the max kayak capacity on big water. Go with a buddy.


1. Always wear a pfd and have additional floatation (I have 24 large pool noodles stuffed inside the hull of my kayak)
2. When water temps get in the 50s and below, strongly consider a power plant lake
3. Go on calm days, bank fish when it’s windy
4. Make friends with people that own boats
5. Minimize anchoring
6. I always have a fully charged cell phone and a hand held vhf radio
7. Paddle leash to kayak
8. Avoid stump fields
9. Minimize gear (# of rods, # of bait boxes, etc)

In the above situation, climbing on top of the flipped kayak and paddling to shore
Drying off/removing clothes and run car with heater full blast if possible



The Longhorns are back
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486076
10/31/17 01:02 PM
10/31/17 01:02 PM
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Posts: 282
Lewisville TX
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Lewisville TX
also ... w/ all of the above.. my favorite memory from kayak fishing hands down is from a winter trip 3 years ago. Water was mid 40's and air was ~26'ish... no wind on a river.... was so cold that water was freezing on the line as you reeled in.. No cloud blue sky. I was prepared... toasty warm but not to warm.. (though my fingertips did feel the cold a bit occasionally). I was with 2 other guys and none of us felt like talking all to much... we all caught fish (sand bass, bass, crappie, catfish, even a small gar) but it was relaxed action and it was just burned into my memory.

Winter kayak fishing... well done is hands down one of my favorite things to do.

Last edited by Searsay; 10/31/17 01:03 PM.
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486140
10/31/17 01:46 PM
10/31/17 01:46 PM
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Texas
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I know collincountytx and most others know this, but not everyone has thought it through, that when you add something like pool noodles or Styrofoam to the inside of a vessel, it does nothing to make a kayak float better while it is in its proper floating orientation. What it does do, and I think not a bad idea to follow a good tip here, is add buoyancy if you invert (flip) the vessel and it takes on water. Pool noodles weigh very little and they'd sure help keep you afloat if the bilge area starts filling up with water,that or you need to grab something you can pull out for some support while making your way to shore if you can't get out of the water. I sort of like the idea of stuffing some of these inside.

My Sportspal S-15 canoe comes completely lined with ethafoam, that and it has two ethafoam sponsons (boat collars) on each side that ride about 3" above the water line under normal loading. The ethafoam lining makes the aluminum much quieter to stand and move around on and the sponsons would help with secondary stability and flotation if one ever weighted the canoe down enough for it to come in contact with the water. I can't say I ever have, even with another big friend fishing with me.

One warm summer day, I need to invert the canoe and see if it could sink with all of the dense foam. Not sure but I sort of doubt it.

My plan this winter will be to employ most all of the ideas listed above.

Keep and eye out for fellow kayakers, boaters too, who might be in trouble. It happens!

Brad

Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486167
10/31/17 02:09 PM
10/31/17 02:09 PM
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Posts: 18,666
NRH, TX
buda13 Offline OP
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Is the kayak suctioning to the water when upside down a normal thing? We flipped it beside the boat, it was tough for me to get the nose of the yak to pull up off the water due to the suction, I had to really put some effort into it... don't see how a person could do that while floating in the water.





Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486188
10/31/17 02:23 PM
10/31/17 02:23 PM
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Dallas, TX
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The suction thing is not something I have experienced (on a kayak)

Was it a sit on top kayak?

I have experienced the suction effect with canoes—with the large symmetrical opening on a canoe, there can be some water tension pressure when turning it right way up from upside down

Most sit on top kayaks are not symmetrical and the deck space is often the only space below the gunwales



The Longhorns are back
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486265
10/31/17 03:15 PM
10/31/17 03:15 PM
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Apple Springs
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Seems like a sit on top wouldn't suction to the water because of the scupper holes...

Last edited by BKT; 10/31/17 03:15 PM.
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486301
10/31/17 03:37 PM
10/31/17 03:37 PM
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Posts: 18,666
NRH, TX
buda13 Offline OP
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I don't know enough about yaks to know what style... looked like his seat was down in the bottom not attached via the top "rail" if that's what a sit on top is.





Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486419
10/31/17 05:08 PM
10/31/17 05:08 PM
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Denton County
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Sit in. Aka sink in.

90% of kayakers who fish seriously have a sit on top (SOT) style.

You would not get any suction like that.


Originally Posted By: junbengreat
Pulled a gun on his dryer and they caught a bunch of fish.
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486470
10/31/17 05:40 PM
10/31/17 05:40 PM
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Flower Mound, TX
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The first rule is to dress to swim.
In cold weather, wear a PFD.
I carry a whistle and spare truck key in the PFD pocket.

1. If my kayak flips, then I need to flip it back over. I have done it before and can do it again.
2. If I can't get the kayak flipped back over for some reason, then I will try to swim with it to shore.
3. If I can't move the kayak, then I will abandon it and swim toward shore. The decision is to swim to where my truck is parked vs. swimming with the wind vs. swimming to the closest shore.

It's not much of a plan but I have white water kayaking experience and am not concerned about kayaking on a lake.

Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486496
10/31/17 05:57 PM
10/31/17 05:57 PM
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Talked to Jon. The yak was a Ride 115. So a SOT.

He said the guy got it high ended on a stump in the middle of Welsh. From a distance he watch the guy kind of rocking the kayak and trying to get it off.

Then flip. He was in the drink! yak turtled. Jon said the guys life jacket was either in very bad shape or he was not trusting it because he was panicking as if he was about to drown.

They got him on the boat and were able to tow the yak back to shore.

It was the guy's second time ever in a kayak and the first time on that one. He had borrowed it from a friend.

So this kind of jives with some of the guys were saying about experience. And knowing what your limitations are I would not be out in the middle of a stumpfield lake by myself on my second trip ever and the first trip and a particular yak. Live and learn.

I'm glad that Jon and Buda were there to help the guy out... sounded like he was getting some trouble real quick


Originally Posted By: junbengreat
Pulled a gun on his dryer and they caught a bunch of fish.
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12486654
10/31/17 07:19 PM
10/31/17 07:19 PM
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Grapevine
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I'm more concerned about getting scuppered on a stump than capsizing, I can see bad things happening
while trying to get off a stump.



I've never been good, But I've been Lucky!
I don't Lie or Exaggerate, but sometimes I remember BIG!
Re: What is your emergency plan if you capsize? [Re: buda13] #12487019
10/31/17 09:51 PM
10/31/17 09:51 PM
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Cherokee County
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I carry a dry bag with full set of warm clothing, extra set of rainproof top and bottoms, underwear, thermals, socks, toboggan, fire starting material, lighter, and a 40 gallon heavy duty trash bag. I keep it packed with the same stuff all year round. Have used it twice, once for someone else that dumped in very cold water during the winter and once for myself during summer when I didn't put on rain jacket and just kept fishing. Rains kept coming then winds got up, I got soaked and though it felt good for a while, it only takes a few minutes to get to shivering. Went to shore, sat down and put my legs inside trash bag as I changed out of wet clothes, dried off with towel then got under trash bag when changing out upper body clothing. In the rain that day, without the trash bag, my towel and dry clothes would have been soaked again before I could have gotten them on. I try to always be prepared to spend the night as there are lots of places that I fish that would be tough to hike out of at night. Knowing that I'm going to have dry warm clothes in an emergency takes a lot of fear out of dumping my kayak.


A good rule of angling philosphy is not to interfere with another fisherman's ways of being happy, unless you want to be hated.

Zane Grey, Tales of Fishes, 1919

https://vimeo.com/73372194

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