ICAST Recap: Day 3 | Kayak Angler Magazine | Rapid Media
The new BOTE Rover SUP Photos by: Ric Burnley

Our recap of the third day of ICAST 2017

BOTE Rover Wins Best of Show

In another coup for paddle fishing, BOTE’s Rover won Best Boat and Best of Show at this summer’s ICAST Tradeshow. Capturing the most coveted award for fishing gear, BOTE continued the tradition of paddle craft winning big at the big show. The Rover is a hybrid skiff/paddleboard that sports a small outboard motor and SUP paddle. 

The Rover was designed as a paddleboard first. A channeled hull and flared nose make the board paddle well without a motor. At 14-feet long and 33 inches wide, the board has ample stability with over 500 pounds of capacity. The board features a sunken deck and wide rails to lower the angler’s center of gravity and further increase stability. Still, the Rover weighs just 105 pounds making it easy to transport with an available cart. You can even fit the Rover in the back of a pick-up truck. 

BOTE constructed the Rover out of its great looking and great performing combination of fiberglass, Honeycore and Inegra for a light, stiff and beautiful finish. These boards look like a work of art on the water. We hope they will make a Rover using the new Gatorshell fiberglass for an indestructible board. 

Like all BOTE boards, the Rover is all about accessories. Tackle stand, cooler holder and grab rails combine to turn the SUP into a fishing machine. The BOTE Pros say they can cover 20 miles paddling the board and over 180 miles with a six horsepower outboard. They included leash plugs strategically placed on the deck to add fishfinder, coolers and other accessories. It’s even pre-rigged for a PowerPole Micro. 

As paddle-fishing technology advances, innovative products like BOTE’s Rover will continue to bring more anglers into the sport. And, win awards.

ram mounts

RAM Mounts Crash the Party

RAM Mounts has released 18 new kayak fishing accessories at ICAST with innovative solutions to old problems. Starting with the modular Tough Tracks that can be combined to add gear tracks as short as six inches or as long as you like. The tracks are connected with loading points making it easy to add accessories and eliminating sharp ends. RAM continued the gear track theme with a new aluminum handle that doubles as a gear track. Now you can mount a camera on the bow and stern handle and save space. A new post spine attachment connect to the gear tracks at two points for a sturdier mounting point. Add the new RAM Rod HD oversized and over built rod holder that can secure big rods and survive big fish. The rod holder has a gimble in the bottom and it can be adjusted to hold rods at an angle or vertically. They also added a roller ball paddle clip that is designed with springs and rubber contact point for a silent and secure way to hold the paddle. The paddle clip can be track mounted or attached to a Tough Claw to hold the paddle to a stand assist bar. My favorite new gadget is the Light Aware light pole. It takes any small flash light and is spring loaded to bend if it hits an obstruction. The pole holds a signal flag and has a ¼-20 insert to make a great camera mount. 

000 malone auto racks

Malone Auto Racks

As a long-time owner of a Malone Micro trailer and several Malone kayak carts, I’m always excited to stop by the Malone booth to check out what’s new for kayak anglers. 

This year Joe Goodrich showed me around some of their newest and coolest gadgets. First, they improved the TelosXL load assist module. The ladder style bars attach to the roof racks and extend to the ground. Load the kayak onto the cradles and push it up onto the car roof, the ratcheted system makes it easy to lift a heavy kayak to the car roof. The new Telos XL extends all the way to the ground and farther away from the car and the ratchets start at knee length making it even easier and safer to load the kayak. They improved the J-holds with a trigger and handle to engage the ratchets. 

They’ve also added adjustable, submersible trailer bunks for their trailers to accommodate larger kayaks. Coastal anglers will like the smaller version of their beach hauler wheels that will fit smaller kayak carts. Urban anglers will like the Lariat Security Cable that keeps the kayak on the trailer or rack. My favorite goodie is the new paddle holder that secures my paddle to my trailer crossbars so I can keep my blades safe and secure on the road. 

 Mustang PFD

Mustang Goes Wild

Mustang Survival makes safety gear and outwear for commercial and competitive water activities, and they are committed to sharing their high-quality gear with paddle anglers, too. One of my favorite entries in the New Product Showcase was their Khimera hybrid PFD. The low-profile, side-entry PFD offers seven-pounds of flotation. Pull a metal tab and the PFD inflates to add 14 more pounds for a total of 21-pounds flotation. Unlike other inflatable PFDs, the air bladders are inside the Cordura covering so it doesn’t have to be repacked after use. I like that they included a sleeve to hold an extra CO2 cartridge so the PFD can be recharged on the water. I’ve been using a hybrid PFD for the past three years and it’s a great compromise between comfort and safety. After seeing the simple and sturdy Khimera, I can’t wait to get it on the water. 

In addition to PFDs, Mustang applies their high-quality construction and materials to a line of outwear and bags. This year they are adding a convertible dry Arc dry suit. The jacket and bib can be worn separately, or attached using a gasket with a Zip-lock seal. The suit is built tough with extra padding in the knees and butt. Gaskets on the sleeves and neck keep water out and an aggressive zipper in the crotch lets water out. Instead of the shoulder straps going from the front of the bibs to the back, they replace the back straps with stretchy Lycra material that spreads out the weight of the bibs to reduce fatigue. They also added a lighter Taku jacket and bib for three-season protection from the elements. 

Continuing their line of water gloves, they added summer versions of their super sensitive Traction gloves. The light weight gloves have sunproof, lightweight, breathable back and a reinforced palm designed for paddling. 

They even expanded their line of cool bags with a huge 80-liter dry bag. The main section of the bag is a 60-liter waterproof dry bag with a second 20-liter compartment of breathable material to hold wet stuff. 

 power pole

Power Pole on a Diet

One of the complaints anglers had about the automatic stake-out pole PowerPole Micro was the weight of the pole. The heavy pole reduced the kayaks stability and was overkill for light kayaks. This summer, they released the Ultra-Lite Spike that weighs half of the original pole and maintains a 1500 pound capacity. The Ultra-Lite is available in 8.5- and 6-foot version. Both the Heavy Duty and Ultra-Lite have been redesigned with a T-handle that makes it easier to manually deploy. They even added a ¼-20 threaded insert to add a camera mount for a bird’s eye view of the action. I like the dockline that makes it easy to attach the pole to the kayak for quick deploys.

 NRS Lineup

NRS goes Fishing

NRS has been carrying their extensive experience and knowledge in watersports gear to the kayak fishing world for the past few years, but this summer they’ve gone overboard with a line a great fishing gear. As a sign of their commitment to the sport, they’ve even designed a new logo with mountains and hooks for their fishing gear. 

This year, they’ve added cool new shirts designed for summer fishing. The Guidewear shirts come in women’s and men’s cuts and cool checked pattern that looks good on the water or the street. As expected, NRS designed the shirts with low-profile seams that are strategically placed to be paddle friendly. Light fabric is UPF 35 and mesh panels under the arms improve ventilation. I was hot on the Silkweight shirts. They’re made of super light UPF 50 fabric that doesn’t get clammy. Again, the eliminated seams in the elbows for paddling comfort. They also redesigned their famous Sidewinder fishing bibs without bright accents and sturdier construction and a breathable stocking foot. And, they’ve added two new fishing boots with neoprene uppers and either felt or lugged sole. With the famous outfitter putting it’s energy and intelligence into fishing, we can’t wait to see what NRS comes up with next. 

 onyx pfd

Onyx on the Scene

Onyx has quickly become the favorite belt-pack PFD for standup paddleboarders. Now, they’ve added another great low-profile PFD for paddle anglers. The new M16 Core is a chest-pack inflatable PFD that manually inflates to automatically cover the angler. After pulling the cord on a belt pack, the angler still has to pull the air bladder over his head. With the chest pack, once the bladders inflate, they are ready for action. The M16 Core has a cool mesh back with neoprene padding in the straps. A small pocket on the pack is large enough to carry a cellphone and extra CO2 cartridges. This is a comfortable PFD that is out of the way for paddling and fishing.

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