Kayak fishing takes your outdoor adventures to another level of fun and enjoyment.
Wearing the most appropriate and suitable clothing for kayak fishing can actually play a big part in how successful your trip is.
In this article, we take a look at some of the best pants for kayak fishing to help you find the best gear for your next adventure.
Best Pants for Kayak Fishing: Our 12 Top Picks
These pants are extremely adaptable. They are so versatile, they can pretty much be worn for any outdoor activity.
They are made from breathable nylon and can also be zipped off into shorts if you need even more breathability in warm weather.
What's better than good-quality pants for kayak fishing? A full rain suit that doesn't break the bank!
This is a comfortable, waterproof, and very lightweight rain suit that will keep the cold water at bay while you enjoy your fishing trip.
These pants keep you fully waterproofed from the waist down. This makes them extra useful in cold weather when you want to avoid getting wet at all costs.
They also allow plenty of room for layering to help keep you warm and comfortable while out on the water.
Best Kayak Fishing Pants: Full Reviews
For those that don't know, NRS stands for Northwest River Supplies which is well known for making some very high-quality gear and has been doing so for a long time (since 1972).
The NRS Freefall Dry Pants are a tough and durable pair of pants that use moisture-wicking technology to ensure you stay dry and warm while out on the water.
They come in a relaxed fit, so you will be comfortable and dry while wearing these pants.
- Fully adjustable for a comfortable fit
- Built-in dry socks
- Elasticated waistband
These outdoor pants are suited for everyday use as well as for kayak fishing.
The Kaisike Outdoor Pants have multiple pockets, all of which have zips to make sure the contents are safe and secure no matter what you are doing.
They are water-resistant and do a good job of helping you retain your body heat.
- Adjustable waistband for the best fit and comfort
- Zipped fly with a button catch to secure
- Multiple zipped pockets for practicality
If you are kayak fishing in particularly wet and cold conditions, then the Grundéns Men’s Weather Watch Bib Trouser might be exactly what you need.
These pants are fully waterproof and have been designed to be worn over the top of your normal outdoor gear.
They are as comfortable as they are protective, so you will be dry, warm, and comfortable with these pants on.
- Taped seams
- Adjustable leg cuffs
- Storage pockets on chest and leg
For kayak anglers who like looking good to be a feature of their best kayak fishing pants, the Under Armour Men's Fish Hunter Cargo Pants fit the bill.
Not only are they water-resistant, but they are also salt and chlorine-resistant too which helps prevent any staining from occurring.
They also offer UPF 30+ sun protection and lots of useful pockets for storage.
- Articulated knees for better mobility and fit
- Multiple pockets, including a dedicated knife pocket
If you like your fishing clothing to be versatile, then the Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants are the ones to look at.
They are lightweight and are fast drying in case you find yourself in cold water during an unexpected dip.
UPF 50+ sun protection is another layer of protection these outdoor pants give you.
- Classic fit to suit most body types
- Partial-elasticated waist for comfort and fit
- Zip-off legs to quickly convert to shorts in warmer weather
The name Storm Defender sounds tough, and that's exactly what these pants are.
They are waterproof, lightweight, breathable, and able to deal with pretty much any weather conditions you might experience while kayak fishing.
Deep pockets help keep all your belongings safe, while the elasticated waistband helps the Storm Defender Relaxed Fit Pants fit comfortably too.
- High levels of wind protection
- Double layering at the knees allows pads to be added
- Waterproof and breathable
The 5.11 Tactical Men's Taclite Pro Pants are more than capable of coping with the rigors of life in the wild.
The gusseted design gives plenty of freedom when it comes to movement and they are made from a stretchy fabric that is not easily ripped.
These pants have more pockets than you could ever need which gives you plenty of options for carrying extra kit with you on your adventures.
- Easily cleaned
- Comfortable but extremely tough and durable
As the name suggests, these pants are designed for paddlers like kayak anglers.
The Kokatat Men's Hydrus Tempest Pants are made of three layers of waterproof fabric to keep you protected and dry, whatever the weather. Despite the thickness of the pants, they are surprisingly breathable and comfortable to wear.
To help you find the best fit, the waistband is fully adjustable and also features tabs for attaching other accessories or gear you need to carry.
- Fully waterproof
- Sealed seams
- Gravel guard
The NRS Women's Endurance Paddling Pants are well suited to any woman who loves kayak fishing.
The seams are fully sealed for waterproofing, and there are two and a half layers of protection keeping you dry, comfortable, and warm no matter what the weather.
The reinforced seat and knees help keep your pants in good condition for longer too which is always a bonus.
- Water-resistant thigh pocket
- Adjustable waistband for a comfortable fit
It may seem a little strange talking about overalls and kayak fishing, but more and more kayak anglers are turning to overalls like the Simms Challenger Fishing Bib Overalls as they offer a huge amount of protection.
Any fishing gear from Simms should fill you with confidence that it is going to be high-quality and long-lasting.
These pants are fully waterproof and are made from heavy-duty fabric that will have no trouble dealing with the expected bumps and scrapes associated with an outdoor adventure.
- Thigh pockets for useful storage
- Taped seams to keep you dry and warm
- Fully adjustable to make sure they fit you perfectly
If you want some budget-friendly kayak fishing gear, then you will be a fan of the Frogg Toggs Men's Classic Rain Suit.
This is the type of fishing clothing that you can wear for most outdoor activities and not just kayak fishing.
It is a versatile, comfortable, and hard-wearing set that is waterproof and offers good levels of protection from the elements.
- Lightweight and comfortable fitting pants and paddling jacket
- Comes in multiple color choices including camo!
- Completely waterproof
Warm weather leads to a higher water temperature - that means only one thing, long pants are out, and shorts are in!
The NRS Men's Paddling Shorts are tough and durable, and they offer UPF 50+ sun protection.
They have been designed for use in the water, so they are well suited to kayak fishing. If you want some breathable fishing shorts that wick moisture away from your body to help keep you cool, quick-drying and protect you from harmful UV rays, you can't go wrong with these paddling shorts.
- Tough shorts made of nylon and spandex
- Multiple pockets for practicality and convenience
- Stretchy material with an adjustable fit for freedom of movement and comfort
What to Look For in Fishing Pants for Kayak Anglers
Kayak fishing asks for some specific features of fishing pants. To make sure you choose only the best ones, here are some things to look for.
The Style of Pants
Pants suitable for kayak fishing come in different styles. While each style of pants can work for your kayak fishing adventure, each one has different features that might appeal more to you.
The first style to look at is paddling pants that have been designed for the purpose of being worn while kayaking. This clearly makes them a strong contender for the best style for kayak fishing, but they do tend to lack adaptability and probably won’t be suited to many other activities outside of a kayak.
General outdoor pants such as cargo pants or hiking pants can also be very good pants for kayak fishing. They are made to withstand outdoor life, so they can be worn for all of your outdoor adventures and not just your water-based ones.
Fishing bibs are not always a popular choice for kayak fishing, but they offer a high level of protection from the water and the elements too.
If weather conditions are milder or you are kayak fishing on hot summer days, then paddling shorts could be a very good choice of attire.
A word of warning when it comes to the best thing to wear for kayak fishing, you should avoid waders as these can fill with water pretty quickly, and taking on water in a kayak is never a good thing!
Comfort & Flexibility
When you are out on the water, you want to feel comfortable and able to move around as you need to.
Making sure your fishing pants fit you well and comfortably will make your time in your kayak even more enjoyable.
You also need to think about whether you will need room to add layers underneath your kayaking pants to increase your levels of protection from the cold and wet. If you do, then a bigger size than normal might be required.
Pants that are restrictive will make you uncomfortable, and you may struggle to move around freely. This can cause an uncomfortable and unsuccessful day of fishing.
Waterproofing & Wind Proofing
Some fishing pants are completely waterproof and have no trouble keeping you dry in heavy rain.
A good level of waterproofing is particularly useful when water temperatures are low, as you will struggle to stay warm if your clothes can’t keep you dry for most of the day.
Wind proofing is another factor to consider when choosing your kayak fishing pants. A biting wind in the colder months of the year can very quickly make you uncomfortable.
Pants that can offer you protection from the wind will help you stay warm and comfortable for longer while out on the water.
Some of the fishing pants on this list come with a rain jacket that not only helps keep you dry but also offers extra warmth for those outdoor adventures in colder weather.
Choosing the correct size of kayak fishing pants is important to make sure they fit nicely.
Adjustability is also something to keep in mind, though, as you may need them to fit tighter or looser at times depending on how much you are carrying in the pockets or tasks, you are trying to complete.
Some fishing pants are more adjustable than others, so choosing ones that best fit your requirements is an important thing to get right.
Look for things like adjustable cuffs, adjustable waistbands, and similar to give you an idea of how much flexibility you have in changing the fit.
Any outdoor gear needs to be durable to withstand the rigors of outdoor life.
Kayak fishing pants also need to be durable to make sure they last a long time and don’t let you down while you are out on the water.
The protection your pants provide can be reduced if they are not in good condition. Sun protection levels from harmful UV rays can drop if your pants start to degrade over time.
You will also be less protected from a lower air temperature, making you feel colder much quicker.
Look at the materials your chosen pants are made from to make sure they can cope with the activities you have planned for them.
Choosing the best pants for kayak fishing can raise lots of questions. If your question hasn’t yet been answered in this article, here are some of the frequently asked questions other anglers have.
How Should I Dress for a Cold Water Kayak?
The key thing to remember is to wear clothing suitable for immersion in the water.
In simple terms, this means you need to think about the temperature of the water rather than the air temperature.
If you are kayak fishing in the depths of winter, then it is a good idea to wear a wetsuit to help keep you protected from the cold.
Can I Wear Waders for Kayak Fishing?
No! As mentioned earlier in this article, waders are not safe to wear while kayaking.
If you find yourself in the water, your waders can quickly fill up. This water will be cold, which will restrict your movements, but the added weight of the water can also make it extra difficult for you to remove yourself and get to safety.
Do I Need Special Pants for Kayak Fishing?
Usually, pants designed for general outdoor use will be sufficient for kayak fishing.
As long as the pants you choose offer plenty of protection against the water and weather, they will likely be fine for your kayaking adventure.
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