Sunday, December 21, 2014

Late December Trip

I got to go fishing yesterday, on a rainy Saturday.  This time of year is a busy one for me, with a lot of OT at the job, so getting out at all is a blessing.  Despite the rain, it was a great day to fish.

Low tide was around midday, and I knew that the time around dead low would be my best bet to get on some fish.  I basically messed around a few areas while the tide went out.  I got back to my favorite spot and started my search.  If there were fish around, they weren't moving.  I found myself fan-casting the creeks, all the while watching for movement.  First hint of a redfish came when I cast to a spot and I must have hit the fish - because he shot out of there and made a big head-wake while fleeing.

I could stand to look in the clear water, but I was at a disadvantage - I left the sunglasses in the car.  With the rain I figured that sight-fishing would be minimal - once again hindsight was 20/20.

I finally got some luck when I landed the first red - it was 22".


I caught another fish out of the same spot - then the rest of the school moved off after all the commotion.  The Power Pole Micro Anchor really helped the Hobie Outback stick in one spot while working the school - without it, the Outback would have been pulled-in while fighting the first fish.


After those first two fish, I went to another spot nearby and got on another school of reds...caught two more in that group.  I went back and forth and ended up catching six fish between spots.  I lost a few more fish during the trip...the reds weren't biting very aggressively, and I pulled the hooks on a couple.  The only bait that worked today was the Trout Trick, rigged on 1/8-oz Gamakatsu jig heads.  I had to fish them ultra-slow to draw a strike.

This was great therapy for me...fishing is my ultimate stress-buster.  It was a great trip to end the year!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Hobie Outback with Rectangular Hobie Hatch

I have added a Pro Angler-style rectangular hatch to my 2015 Hobie Outback, replacing the circular hatch that comes stock with the kayak.


Of course, I was so eager to install this thing that I didn't take any pics during the install.  But I can say it was a very easy installation - taking me around 30 minutes from start to finish.


One thing I was looking forward to, with having this hatch on the Outback, was using the "Tackle Management System" to hold two medium-sized Plano trays.


Some folks say "You'll have to put your legs in the water to open/close/access the hatch!" - but I have found this to not be the case for me.  I guess the redesigned cockpit and seat of the 2015 Outback made this modification easier, as you can see in the picture below.


Interested in this mod for your 2015 Outback?  Go see your local Hobie dealer - they can steer you in the right direction!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Rigging the 2015 Hobie Outback

My 2015 Hobie Outback was a blank canvas - waiting for some 'color' to make it come alive!


Lets start at the back of the Outback, where a lot of stuff seems to be going on.  I added a Micro Power-Pole to the Outback, using a mounting plate that I crafted out of a piece of 1/2" starboard and mounted with stainless nuts/bolts.  I ran the power cable for the Micro through the rear hatch, with a West-Marine thru-hull wire cap.  I did this to minimize the amount of holes drilled into the main hull.


This mount has the Micro off-set to the the right side of the Outback, clear of the rudder's travel path so nothing binds, and the rudder can be extended and retracted as normal.



The release-cord for the Micro is mounted on it's keeper next to the right-rear rod holder.  Note that I am using the Hobie rod holder extensions for the molded-in rear rod holders.


Up front, on the left side of the cockpit, is a Lowrance Mark-4 mounted on a Ram mount, using the Lowrance adapter for a clean install.  The thru-hull wire ports that Hobie has pre-installed on their kayaks makes running wires easy.  The transducer is mounted in the Lowrance-Ready pocket, on the bottom of the Outback (not pictured).


Both the Lowrance Mark-4 and the Micro Power-Pole are powered off a single battery, which I have mounted on the sailing mast, on a Hobie battery holder.  The Mark-4 unit is a battery-miser, so much so that I can use it on five or six trips of more than eight hours without killing a battery.  The Micro is also good with battery power.  I decided to run both off a 12V 9Ah battery.  So far, this has worked out great with no power issues at all.


For some camera action, I added a YakAttack Mighty Mount on the left side, holding a Targus monopod that has been converted with some butchered Ram and Scotty parts to make a camera boom, where I can add my HD action camera for some nice-angled fishing shots.


This pretty much sums up my rigging of the 2015 Hobie Outback!  How did you rig yours?  Hope you enjoy your new kayak...