I love kayak tournaments. I have been a part of every event I can find since the first CAKFG event I fished three – maybe four – years ago. I travel thousands of miles annually chasing them because I love the comradery, the competition and the adventures my wife and I share as we travel. I attend local, statewide, KBF, Hobie BOS, charity…any I can find (free on Sunday if you know where one is)…sometimes doing ok, sometimes sucking….but always love just being there!
A recent poll went up on the CAKFG Facebook page asking if motors should be allowed in our local events. it seems to have sparked a very spirited debate filled with emotion and differing opinions on the impact motors might have. This is not a new topic to kayaking, and will continue to be argued among tournament trails. Usually I stay out of any topic as emotional as this one; not quite politics and religion, just a lot of passion around it…but…here we go…
…I wish motors were not allowed in kayak events….even for pre-fishing. There is something about not using one that makes it more to me personally…human vs his/her environment. The wind, rain, current and temp – there is something natural about it.
On hot or cold days, I get very tired pedaling. Having had quadruple heart bypass, it is hard to withstand extremes…but I actually feel good fighting through it to compete; it makes me feel more alive to be honest. The work required to keep myself ready to survive those days has been part of the beauty of kayak fishing for me; part of the appeal.
I will respectfully disagree with those that feel there is not an advantage with motors….if nothing more than covering and eliminating more water, they help….if there were no advantage, no one would be adding them. With a motor, my physical (and mental on some level) prep is not as critical…pushing myself to overcome the conditions and obstacles that my environment stacks against me would be easier…it would no longer be “me” against it all. The long nights driving, or sleeping on ramps, would be easier to overcome if I added a motor.
But I wish motors were not allowed.
Now that being said, if the rules change, I plan to add the largest motor allowed to remain competitive….because if the rules at some trails say they are acceptable it will become integral to the sport in some arenas. I plan to put a foot controlled, spot locking monster of a motor on my kayak with the largest battery I can afford so I can cover miles and miles of water. Because there are distinct advantages to a motor and I do not see me not at the tournaments anytime soon. I will use one at the tournaments that allow them, and take it off for those that do not.