Got a kayaker on your Christmas list? Consider these four gifts. I fished a lot of gear hard this year, in some pretty gnarly spots, and this is what rose to the top.

1) Feet That Don’t Stink: Astral Brewer kayaking shoes

Rapid drainage, sturdy construction, quick-dry materials and a marked resistance to odor make these the best shoes I’ve ever worn for kayak fishing. They do as well on land as they do on water and grip well on wet rock, making great light hikers for the beach or the river. And they look cool, too. $99.95

2) A Better Feel For Bites: Van Staal Reels


Van Staal reels come in a range of sizes, but you can’t go wrong with a VS 150 for anyone who chases bigger fish. The smoother the reel, the easier it is to feel your bait working in the water, and a Van Staal reels like butter. A sealed drag and a self-flushing design make them as tough as they come. These reels are not cheap, but cheaper reels don’t last. A great gift for the salt water angler. $699

3) More Time On The Water: Ocean Kayak’s Comfort Zone Seat


Upgrade your angler’s seat to one with more padding and more back support, like Ocean Kayak’s Comfort Zone model. More time in your kayak means catching more fish. And that extra support gives you a more efficient stroke, letting you cover more water. $124.99

4) A Sixth Sense for Fish: The Lowrance Mark-4



Nothing ramps a learning curve like a good depth finder. Spot fish, find holes, and mark your spots on a chart with Lowrance’s Mark-4 HDI. Get this one from your local kayak dealer and they’ll install it for you, mounting the transducer and running the wires properly. $229