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Choosing the Right Rod Holders and Mounts for Your Kayak

Kayak rod holders and mounts

Kayak fishing has become increasingly popular, and selecting the right rod holders and mounts is crucial for a successful fishing experience. In this article, we will guide you through the factors to consider and the types of rod holders available, helping you make the best choice for your kayak.

Key Takeaways:

  • Consider the type of fishing, kayak design, and rod size when selecting rod holders.
  • There are different types of rod holders available, including flush-mount, rail-mount, clamp-on, and swivel rod holders.
  • Placement of rod holders is important for convenience and functionality.
  • Proper installation, using the right hardware, ensures secure attachment of rod holders.
  • Research reputable brands like RAM Mounts, Scotty, Stealth QR2, and YakAttack for quality rod holders.

Types of Rod Holders

Kayak fishing is an exciting way to enjoy the great outdoors while pursuing your passion for angling. When it comes to outfitting your kayak for fishing, selecting the right rod holders is essential. There are several types of rod holders available, each with its own unique features and benefits. Let’s explore the different types of rod holders that you can consider for your kayak:

Flush-Mount Rod Holders

Flush-mount rod holders are designed to be installed directly onto the kayak’s deck, providing a low-profile setup. These holders are mounted flush with the surface, ensuring that they do not interfere with your paddling or casting. Flush-mount rod holders are ideal for anglers who prefer a sleek and minimalist look for their kayak, as they blend seamlessly into the design. They provide a secure and stable hold for your fishing rod, keeping it securely in place while you navigate the waters.

Rail-Mount Rod Holders

Rail-mount rod holders are attached to the kayak’s rail system, offering a more visible and accessible location for your fishing rod. These holders can be easily adjusted along the rail to accommodate different rod lengths and positioning. Rail-mount rod holders provide excellent versatility, allowing you to tailor your setup according to your fishing preferences. They are particularly useful for anglers who require quick and easy access to their rods while on the water.

Clamp-On Rod Holders

Clamp-on rod holders are a popular choice for kayakers who want the flexibility to mount their rod holders wherever they desire. These holders can be clamped onto various parts of the kayak, such as the gunwales or the seat frame, providing a secure attachment. Clamp-on rod holders allow you to experiment with different positions and angles, ensuring optimal comfort and convenience. They are easy to install and remove, making them a versatile option for kayak fishing enthusiasts.

Swivel Rod Holders

Swivel rod holders offer the ability to adjust the position of your fishing rod effortlessly. These holders feature a swivel mechanism that allows you to rotate the rod holder and position your rod at different angles. Swivel rod holders are highly versatile, as they enable you to adapt to changing fishing conditions and target different areas without the need to adjust your kayak or reposition yourself. They are an excellent choice for anglers who value flexibility and convenience while on the water.

Now that you’re familiar with the different types of rod holders available for kayaks, you can choose the one that best suits your fishing style and preferences. Whether you prefer a sleek and streamlined setup or require the flexibility to adjust your rod position, there is a rod holder out there that will enhance your kayak fishing experience.

kayak fishing rod holders

Table: Types of Rod Holders

Type of Rod Holder Description
Flush-Mount Rod Holders Mounted flush with the kayak’s deck, providing a low-profile setup
Rail-Mount Rod Holders Attached to the kayak’s rail system for visibility and accessibility
Clamp-On Rod Holders Clamped onto various parts of the kayak for flexibility in placement
Swivel Rod Holders Allow for easy adjustments in rod position for versatility

Where to Put Rod Holders on a Kayak

When it comes to kayak fishing, the placement of rod holders is crucial for convenience and functionality. You want to position your rod holders in a way that allows easy access to your fishing rods without impeding your paddling or casting. To achieve the optimal placement, consider the following tips:

1. Keep rod holders behind the seat: Placing rod holders behind your seat is ideal for storage. This allows you to have your rods within reach but out of the way when you’re actively paddling or casting. It also helps maintain balance and stability in your kayak.

2. Use the front holder for rigging and trolling: The front rod holder should be reserved for rigging and trolling. This gives you a clear view of the rod tip when trolling and makes it easy to grab a rod quickly when a fish strikes. It’s a strategic position that allows you to react swiftly to any bites while keeping your other rods safely stored behind you.

Placement Tips Benefits
Behind the seat Convenient storage position
Front holder Clear view for trolling and easy access to rods

It’s also important to consider the layout of your kayak and any existing mounts or tracks when determining the placement of your rod holders. You want to ensure that the rod holders are securely attached and won’t interfere with any other accessories or equipment you have on your kayak. By taking these factors into account, you can achieve the perfect placement for your rod holders and enjoy a seamless fishing experience.

How to Install Rod Holders on a Kayak

Installing rod holders on a kayak is a relatively straightforward process that can greatly enhance your fishing experience. Whether you prefer flush-mount rod holders, rail-mount rod holders, or clamp-on rod holders, the installation steps are similar. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to install rod holders on your kayak:

Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before you begin, make sure you have all the tools and materials required for the installation. Depending on the type of rod holder and your kayak’s construction, you may need a drill, drill bits, stainless steel bolts, lock nuts, marine adhesive, and a mounting bracket or gear track.

Position the Rod Holders

Next, determine the optimal position for your rod holders. Consider factors such as accessibility, ease of use, and how they complement your fishing style. It’s a good idea to test different positions before drilling any holes to ensure a comfortable and functional setup.

Drill the Mounting Holes

Once you’ve chosen the ideal locations, use a drill and the appropriate drill bit size to create mounting holes. If you’re installing flush-mount rod holders, carefully drill through the kayak’s deck. For rail-mount or clamp-on rod holders, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for positioning and drilling the holes.

Remember to apply downward pressure and maintain a steady hand to prevent any damage to the kayak’s surface. If you’re unsure about drilling holes in your kayak, consult the manufacturer or seek professional assistance.

Secure the Rod Holders

After drilling the holes, secure the rod holders in place using stainless steel bolts and lock nuts. Ensure that they are tightly fastened to prevent any movement or wobbling during use. For modular rod holders, attach them to a mounting bracket or gear track according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Seal the Holes

To prevent water from entering your kayak through the mounting holes, seal them with marine adhesive. Apply a generous amount of adhesive around the holes, spreading it evenly to create a watertight seal. Allow the adhesive to dry completely before using your kayak.

By following these steps, you can safely and effectively install rod holders on your kayak. Remember to choose the right type of rod holder for your fishing needs and always prioritize your safety while on the water.

Table: Comparison of Kayak Rod Holder Installation Methods

Installation Method Pros Cons
Flush-mount – Provides a low-profile setup
– Securely mounted to the kayak
– Minimal interference with paddling
– Requires drilling holes in the kayak
– Permanent installation
Rail-mount – Visible and accessible location
– Can be easily adjusted and moved
– No drilling required
– May interfere with paddling
– May not be compatible with all kayak rails
Clamp-on – Flexible placement options
– No drilling required
– Can be easily removed
– May not be as secure as other methods
– Can interfere with paddling

Each installation method has its own advantages and considerations. Choose the one that best suits your kayak, fishing style, and personal preferences, ensuring a secure and convenient setup for your rod holders.

Kayak Rod Holder Brands

When it comes to choosing the right rod holders for your kayak fishing adventures, it’s important to consider reputable brands that specialize in this niche. Here are some top kayak rod holder brands that are known for their quality, innovation, and performance:

  1. RAM Mounts: RAM Mounts offers a wide range of kayak rod holders designed to provide secure and versatile mounting solutions. Their products are known for their durability and ease of use, making them a popular choice among kayak anglers.
  2. Scotty: Scotty is another well-known brand that offers a variety of rod holders for kayaks. They are known for their adjustable and customizable options, allowing anglers to find the perfect fit for their fishing style and preferences.
  3. Stealth QR2: Stealth QR2 specializes in quick-release rod holders that offer convenience and flexibility on the water. Their innovative designs allow for easy attachment and removal, making them ideal for anglers who frequently switch fishing techniques.
  4. YakAttack: YakAttack is a trusted brand that offers a range of kayak fishing accessories, including rod holders. Their products are designed with functionality and durability in mind, ensuring a reliable solution for holding your fishing rods securely.

When considering which brand to choose, it’s important to read reviews and consider your specific needs and preferences. Each brand has its own unique features and designs, so finding the right one for you will depend on factors such as fishing style, kayak setup, and personal preference.

kayak rod holders

Table: Comparison of Top Kayak Rod Holder Brands

Brand Notable Features Price Range
RAM Mounts Secure and versatile mounting, durability $30-$60
Scotty Adjustable and customizable options $20-$50
Stealth QR2 Quick-release functionality $40-$80
YakAttack Functionality and durability $25-$70

Table: A comparison of notable features and price ranges of top kayak rod holder brands


When it comes to kayak fishing, selecting the right rod holders and mounts is essential for a successful and enjoyable experience on the water. By considering factors such as the type of fishing you do, the design of your kayak, the size of your fishing rod, the position of the rod holder, and the type of rod holder itself, you can make an informed decision that will enhance your fishing expeditions.

There are various types of rod holders available, including flush-mount, rail-mount, clamp-on, and swivel rod holders. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose one that suits your specific needs. Whether you prefer a low-profile setup with a flush-mount holder or a more visible and accessible rail-mount holder, there is an option out there for you.

Proper installation and secure attachment are crucial for the longevity and functionality of your rod holders. Depending on the type of holder and your kayak’s construction, installation methods may vary. It’s important to use the appropriate hardware and seal all holes with marine adhesive to prevent water from entering your kayak.

With the wide range of kayak rod holder brands available, such as RAM Mounts, Scotty, Stealth QR2, and YakAttack, you have plenty of options to choose from. Take the time to research and read reviews to find the brand and model that best meets your needs and preferences. By selecting the right rod holders and mounts, you can fish with confidence and convenience, knowing that you have made a wise choice for your kayak fishing adventures.


What factors should I consider when choosing rod holders for my kayak?

Factors to consider include the type of fishing, the type of kayak, the size of the fishing rod, the position of the rod holder, and the type of rod holder itself.

What are the different types of rod holders available for kayaks?

The different types of rod holders available for kayaks include flush-mount, rail-mount, clamp-on, and swivel rod holders.

Where should I position the rod holders on my kayak?

It is recommended to keep rod holders behind the seat for storage and use the front holder for rigging and trolling.

How do I install rod holders on my kayak?

The installation of rod holders depends on the type and construction of your kayak. Flush-mount rod holders require drilling a hole in the kayak’s deck, while other modular holders can be mounted on gear tracks.

What are some popular brands of kayak rod holders?

Some popular brands of kayak rod holders include RAM Mounts, Scotty, Stealth QR2, and YakAttack.