Your First Kayak Fishing Tournament: Tim Hotchkin | YakGear

Your First Kayak Fishing Tournament: Tim Hotchkin

The weather is warming, the kayaks are getting slimed, and the checks are getting written. It’s tournament season in the kayak fishing world. And that got us thinking; what should kayak anglers expect on their first tournament weekend? We sat down with YakGear Brand Ambassador Tim Hotchkin to find out.

What drove you to start participating in kayak fishing tournaments?

I have always been a competitive person.  After years of organized competition, I was looking for a way to still go out and compete.  I always loved kayak fishing and figured it would be a way to combine my two passions.

What is some advice you would give first time tournament entrants?

Don’t worry about the other competitors, what they are doing, or what they are saying.  Go in with a plan and stick to your guns. Following ‘dock talk’ can be a dangerous mistake.  Do your own research and tailor that to your strengths – not jabber overheard at the dock.


Outside of that, the easiest way to be prepared is by reviewing the tournament rules. Don’t get disqualified or toss a qualifying fish because of Captain’s Meeting oversight. If you ever need any clarification, ASK! 

Any gear suggestions?

My crate.  I love that I can customize it based on how I plan to attack tournament fishing that day. The versatility allows me to adjust on the fly and rig up exactly as needed.

Up next, we talk to YakGear Ambassador Holton Walker about his tournament advice for first time tournament anglers