Best Canoe Fishing Accessories & Gear (2023 Update)

Geoff Stadnyk in Fishing On The Water on

Once you have bought yourself a canoe for fishing, you are going to need some extra things before you take it out. So let’s have a look at some canoe fishing accessories that in some cases, can be considered must have pieces of gear for canoe fishermen.

Safety Accessories for Canoe Fishing

This is the most important category of canoe fishing setup. Whilst canoe fishing is not excessively dangerous, it still should be approached with respect, especially if you do your canoe fishing solo. You are going to need a lifejacket or other type of flotation device, you should consider this a must-have piece of canoe fishing equipment, and never go out on the water without one.

ONYX General Purpose Life Jacket


This is a basic, easy to wear lifejacket that is easy to put on, and can be used by both adults and children alike. It has fully adjustable belts that stays securely fastened, and will fit everyone. It is the bare minimum needed to keep a person afloat in the water for many hours.

However, when you are paddling a fishing canoe, a standard lifejacket such as the one we have taken a look at above, can get in the way. It restricts movement, making paddling more difficult, and over time, can chaff at bare skin. This life jacket can be used in all types of water activities.

Stohlquist Brik Personal Floatation Device

safety-accessories_02So we could look at a more advanced flotation device such as the Stohlquist Brik Personal Floatation Device.

This is a much more lightweight, less obtrusive take on the traditional lifejacket, specially designed for canoe/kayak users. It might not be as flexible in terms of who it will fit as a standard lifejacket, but it is a great choice for serious canoe fisherman regardless. It is made of nylon with 5″ high & 11″ wide. It’s fully-ventilated roomy mesh pocket with “D”-ring with a 4-way accessory lash tab.

Shoreline Marine Emergency Survival Whistle


Other smaller canoe fishing accessories for safety include a whistle, such as this Emergency Survival Whistle  from Shoreline Marine, and other personal survival devices.

This Emergency Whistle could be a potentially important item and a life-saver. It can also be used for camping, boating, fishing, hiking and other outdoor activities Brightly colored easy to find it when you need it.

Canoe Accessories

Next, we need to take a look at some of the additional items of gear that canoe fisherman can buy, to enhance the actual canoe they are using for fishing. We won’t cover any of the best fishing backpacks (or waterproof backpacks) and also won’t cover paddles in this section, as most fishing canoes will come with paddles anyway.

Spray Decks

NRS Basic Nylon Kilt Deck Sprayskirt


If your fishing canoe/kayak is the sit-in type, then one the first canoe fishing accessories you should buy, that isn’t related to safety, is a spray deck or spray shirt, if your particular canoe can fit one (some styles cannot).

A spray deck, or spray shirt, goes around your waist, and then slips over the hole in the canoe that your feet go in to, effectively keeping out water. This is great when it is raining, or if the water you are in is creating spray. This is a generic product designed to fit a wide range of canoes and kayaks. It is inexpensive, and should be suitable for most canoe fishermen.

Pro Rand Whitewater Skirt


If you habitually go fishing in very bad weather, or in white water, then you will need something a little sturdier, such as the . This product is designed to keep out water in all but the most serious situation. It is even 100% watertight whilst the canoe is upside down.

The skirt is made of high-density 4mm neoprene with contoured micro-ribbed rubber seal which secures the skirt to the rim of the cockpit. The top-edge wear guard with 22% Kevlar fibers adds exceptional durability. Custom sizes are also available.

Canoe Anchors

Next we need to think about what happens if we want to stop and fish somewhere in our canoe, that isn’t next to the bank? A canoe will not stay stationary even in the lightest wind or current. We need an anchor.

Kwik Tek A-5 PWC Fluke Anchor


Buying an anchor for a canoe is pretty straightforward. You can choose a generic small boat anchor kit such as the This is a cheap, functional product that is fine as a canoe anchor, it comes with rope and stows in a bag.

Lightweight Fluke Anchor – This vinyl-dipped fluke anchor weighs only 1-3/4 pounds, and won¿t scratch finishes. Perfect for PWCs and other small craft, a 25 foot marine-grade rope is spliced to it. A sturdy nylon case is also included for convenient storage.

Advanced Canoe and Kayak Anchor System

safety-accessories_08However, it’s a bit bulky. If you want something that takes up less space, then a proper canoe anchor is the way to go. This is a folding anchor, with light-weight chord, perfect for using with any canoe or kayak in any situation. It has the following features:

  • Perfect for small boats and jon boats
  • Modified transom mount for bow applications
  • 30-inch stainless steel shaft, Foot-operated motor
  • Please refer User Manual under product details.
  • Five-speed technology; rack and pinion steering

Fishing Accessories for a Canoe

Now let’s move on to canoe fishing accessories that actually help with fishing. We are not going to look at what is inside your fishing tackle bag here, but instead, the things that we can equip a canoe with, to enhance our fishing experience.

Trolling Motors

Minn Kota Endura C2 40 Freshwater Transom Mounted Trolling Motor (36″ Shaft)


A trolling motor is a lightweight, low power outboard motor that runs on electricity and is designed to keep the canoe moving at low speeds, for extending periods. Trolling is a style of lure fishing that drags a lure/bait behind the boat, over a large area. Not every canoe has a mount for a trolling motor, so check before buying one.

Minn Kota is a very well-known manufacturer of excellent, inexpensive trolling motors that are great for fishing canoe use. This is perfect for larger canoes. This is a 12-volt motor, which simply requires a battery pack to run. The throttle is built into the rudder, as a single unit, and it uses a simple screw mount. So it should fit a wide range of fishing canoes.

Motorguide Bulldog Peak Thrust Foot Control Trolling Motor

For something a little more heavy duty, for longer use on a larger canoe, we need to step up to something like Foot Control Trolling Motor. This is a heavy usage trolling motor, which also has a footswitch as a throttle, which is really useful to set the speed of trolling whilst actually fishing, instead of clambering all the way to the back of the canoe to reset the throttle. This Freshwater Edition trolling motors deliver legendary MotorGuide durability efficient for operation and ease of use. Additional features include:

  • 40 to 109 pounds of thrust with 12, 24 or 36-volt power options
  • multiple shaft lengths based on your application
  • durable 5-speed technology

Fish Finders

iBobber Castable Bluetooth Smart Fishfinder

A fish finder is an excellent canoe fishing accessory. These days fish finders are fairly inexpensive and very accurate. This device connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth, and can be attached to a fishing line and dropped overboard.

This pocket-sized fish finder is as mobile as you are! The iBobber is the smallest and lightest personal sonar depth finder on the market. It is a castable, portable, and wireless fish finder that syncs with the free app on your smartphone or tablet up to 100’ away. This thing is really cool!

Humminbird 409620-1 HELIX 5 DI Fish Finder with Down-Imaging and GPS

safety-accessories_09For a more traditional fish finder, we suggest the Humminbird Fish Finder with Down-Imaging and GPS. This is both a fish finder and a HPS unit in one. It works well both in freshwater venues, and out in the sea. It has its own built-in LCD screen with Micro SD card slot for optional maps or saving waypoints along with a gimbal mounting system.

It is possibly one of the best canoe fishing accessories for helping you do the thing you are out there to do… catch more fish! If you’re interested in learning about how to improve your kayak fishing setup, check out our article.

Geoff Stadnyk

Geoff started fishing as a child in the gorgeous lakes of Mammoth, while on family vacations. His fishing experience includes the use of fly rod and reel. Guided trips along the Madison and Gallatin rivers in Montana, the Frying Pan and Animus in Colorado, and the Deschutes river in Oregon have all paid off and helped make Geoff the angler and writer that he is today.

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