• Country

Let’s Talk About Bike-fishing

By Adam Marsal

Bike-fishing is a crossover between two entertaining hobbies: cycling to the wilderness and fishing in remote lakes or rivers. Bike-fishing blends the best of these two activities, and so it can be enjoyed by nature enthusiasts willing to share their passion with friends who either cycle or fish and are about to enter the world of the other hobby.

As fishing is a contest of many fishermen catching within a limited area, to a dedicated fisherman, bike-fishing is a way to enter yet inaccessible regions with an unlimited source of fish. While a true cyclist can enrich a fisherman with a new way to approach the river, a fisherman may well show a cyclist how to catch a fish and, theoretically, make him or her survive in the wilderness by being as self-sufficient as possible.

Pick the right gear for bike fishing

As we tend to prefer cycling over fishing, let us start with a bike gear selection. A bike most appropriate for bringing you into the wild should be derived from a bikepacking model with all the useful rack mounts to haul the gear. For carrying the rod and the rest of the fishing gadgets, a frame bag or rear racks are crucial. The more bags to hang on the bike the better, as you’re likely to transport not only the gear such as the rod, fishing vest and baits but also extra clothing or even a sleeping bag to stay overnight. The advice for travelling by bike with heavier equipment is to carry as little weight on your back as possible until you get off the bike and opt for a walk.

Broad tyres would help to cross wetlands, mud and sludge while staying gentle to the trails that are often used by hikers or fisherman that prefer long walks to the catching territories. A fatbike seems to be a perfect choice as well as a bike equipped with chubby 27,5+ tyres.

Flat pedals are the right choice to accommodate the outdoor shoes comfortably, providing enough space and grip. Fishermen prefer shoes that are good both in and out of the water and dry fast, so if you’re just about to start with the sport, ask someone more experienced.

Select the perfect rod

Concerning the fish gear, make sure to pack a rod that breaks down to more pieces for easier transport. Travel rods would work well, too. Stay away from one-piece rods as they would end up stuck in your wheels, chains or caught behind a tree, pushing you off the bike in somersaults. The best way to carry a foldable rod is to simply strap it to the rear rack.

When planning the route, always make sure that catching in the destination is legally permitted. There also might be certain restrictions regarding the season, and the kinds of hooks and bait used. For example, in some regions, using live bait is banned to protect the ecosystem from invasive species.

Don’t forget about a basic repair kit

As you might get deep in the backcountry, a basic repair kit with all the useful tools can prove to be a lifesaving device. A kit containing a chain tool, a spoke wrench and other stuff might help you to get back to civilisation when something goes wrong.

With many people objecting to using quads or off-road cars to access backcountry to enjoy activities like fishing, bicycles represent a way more sustainable means of transport not only for bike-lovers but also traditional fishermen.