The 11 Best Kayak Fishing Nets for 2022 (Land that Catch!)

Have you ever lost a fish before you’ve had a chance to land it?

It can be a pretty disappointing moment, right? Especially if you’ve been fighting hard to bring it in.

And it’s even more challenging to accomplish in a kayak.

You need all the help you can get when you’re out on the water in a more compact craft – and that’s where using a suitable fishing net can really make a difference.

So, to make sure dinner doesn’t get away next time, you should check out this review of the best fishing kayak nets of 2022.

The Best Nets for Kayak Fishing – At a Glance

Before we get properly into the reviews, let’s take a look at some of the things you should be looking out for when choosing a fishing net for kayak fishing.

Try to bear in mind:

  • The type of net – does it have a fixed frame? Does it fold or is it collapsible in some way?
  • Net size – make sure you have a good kayak to net size ratio!
  • Portability – compact nets are easier to transport – but are they easier to kayak with?
  • The net mesh – certain materials can damage fish skin – not ideal if you’re practicing catch and release.
  • Handle and grip – how do you want the handle to be, and what kind of grip does it use?
  • Any extra features – some nets come with a few extra bells and whistles, so it’s important to figure out what is useful to you.
  • Cost – A few bucks to well over $100 – only you can decide your kayak net budget limits.

When you’re reading the reviews, take these features and factors into consideration, and it will help you pinpoint the right kayak fishing net for your needs.

But for a little extra help, here’s our top three picks based on the above points:

In first place, it’s hard to see past the YakAttack folding landing net, which has been made by a company who specializes in kayak accessories.

It’s been specifically designed with kayak fishing in mind, and it features an ingenious arm bar for leverage and control for when you’re landing a monster.

A close second/joint top is the Plusinno collapsible fishing net, which is a highly-rated option that’s super easy to transport and store.

It’s also a fraction of the price of other nets in this review – which might go some way in explaining its popularity.

Only marginally behind our top two is the Ego S2 Slider fishing net, which is a telescopic landing net that offers a choice of net materials – depending on the type of fishing you’re practicing.

Aside from this, there’s the rather clever option of switching the net out completely for some useful alternative heads – including a hook retriever, boat hook, and deck brush.

The 11 Best Kayak Fishing Nets 2022

YakAttack Kayak Folding Landing Net

YakAttack Leverage Landing Net

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If kayak fishing accessory experts YakAttack didn’t have an entry in this review – then something must be amiss.

Operating since 2009, they’re one of the leading brands in the industry, so they know a thing or two about kayak fishing gear.

This folding leverage landing net is a prime example, with an ingenious curved design that revolutionizes the way you land a fish from a kayak.

The forearm grip is as comfortable as it is stable, while the hinged, rubber net can easily be stowed away when not in use.

Designed to make leverage that much easier, this is easily one of the best landing nets for kayak fishing on the market.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Foam covered handle for comfort.
  • Lightweight
  • Durable, full rubber netting.

Cons

  • Pricey.

Takeaway

One of the premium kayak fishing nets, this model from YakAttack is a very clever design, enabling you to land a monster fish as if it were a minnow. Just make sure you’re wearing a pair of fishing shoes, so you don’t slip on deck when bringing in the beast.

Plusinno Foldable Fish Landing Net

Of all the fishing nets for kayaks out there, it’s hard to overlook this effort from Plusinno as being up there with the best.

Not least because of the price – offered at a fraction of the cost of some of the other options in this review.

The collapsible design ensures it’s super compact and portable – which is perfect for use on the go or in your kayak.

There’s a choice of four models, up to 20-inches in size, and the non-absorbent coating on the mesh prevents water clogging and bad odors.

Made with high-density carbon fiber and fiberglass, the pole is durable and strong, with an EVA foam grip for comfort and control.

Pros

  • Outstanding price.
  • Lightweight and portable.
  • Easy to extend and fasten.
  • Belt clip.
  • Very highly rated.

Cons

  • It might not be long enough for some users.

Takeaway

Compact, lightweight, and extremely portable, this is the ideal net for kayak fishing – and the price point makes it that much sweeter. Pair it with one of these awesome travel fishing rods for the perfect on-the-go fishing combo.

EGO S2 Slider Fishing Net

Ego is another relatively new fishing company that was born out of the need to improve already existing products.

Their main focus was the humble fishing net. In the 14 something years they’ve been in the game, they’ve developed some great fishing gear, and this S2 Slider net is no exception.

Featuring a telescopic handle, it’s highly versatile and can be switched out to accommodate over 30 different accessories to make your life easy on the water.

The net extends with a push of a button – so you don’t even need two hands to operate it, meaning you can keep hold of your rod as you bring in your catch at the same time.

When it comes to the best net for kayak fishing – the S2 is a definite contender.

Pros

  • Premium-quality construction.
  • Amazing grip.
  • Choice of rubber or PVC coated mesh.
  • Versatile use.

Cons

  • Expensive.

Takeaway

This fishing net just smacks of quality through and through. There’s so much to like here – from the push-button telescoping, to the multi-tool compatibility – this is top-drawer. And follow this link for more clever fishing multi-tools you shouldn’t set off without.

ForEverlast Gen 2 Non-Snag Floating Fishing Net

ForEverlast G2 Pro Net

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This non-snag fishing net is very versatile, and can be used for all types of angling – particularly when you’re short on space. It’s super compact and lightweight, yet still with a large enough opening to land fish of all shapes and sizes.

Featuring a lanyard cord with a clip to keep it safely attached to your person – or anywhere else you want to store it, the best thing about this net is that it floats – which is a real plus point when it comes to kayak fishing.

The foam handle offers excellent comfort and control, and the rubber-coated net allows for easy catch-and-release fishing.

Pros

  • Award-winning net.
  • Compact design.
  • Non-snag.
  • Tether cord included.

Cons

  • The handle is a little on the short side.

Takeaway

Never watch your prized fishing net sink out of sight again with this floating option that just lends itself to kayak fishing.

KastKing Brutus Foldable Fishing Net

KastKing Brutus Foldable Fishing Net

Designing and manufacturing some awesome, budget-friendly fishing gear and equipment, KastKing has risen to become one of the best fishing brands in the world – and you can follow that link for more.

With an emphasis on affordable quality, this extendable net joins these ranks, made with high-quality 6063 aluminum alloy for durability.

With a choice of PVC or silicone net, it’s compact and lightweight, with a telescopic, folding handle and push down switch for storage.

The handle is grippy and brightly colored – so you can easily locate the net when you need it the most.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Great price for what you get.
  • Highly portable.
  • Reinforced locking switch.
  • Storage bag included.
  • Fish-friendly and snag-proof.

Cons

  • A handle loop would have been nice.

Takeaway

Another great example of affordable, quality fishing gear from KastKing, this is a smart, compact, all-purpose net that will meet all your angling needs – and not just in the kayak. They also happen to make some amazing fishing pliers – so follow that link to find out more.

Goture Magnetic Clip Fly Fishing Landing Net

Made with a natural rubber for protecting fish scales, this is a great catch-and-release fishing net that’s ideal if you’re short on space.

It comes with a magnetic handle and steel lanyard, so you can keep the net close and not risk losing it to the murky depths.

The handle features a revolving switch for flexible length, with aluminum alloy support to ensure a stronger, load bearing force to capture heavier beasts.

And EVA foam handle offers good comfort and control, and it comes in a selection of colors and net shapes, so you can tailor your choice to your own fishing requirements.

Pros

  • Premium rubber net.
  • Versatile use.
  • Sturdy construction.
  • Compact and lightweight.

Cons

  • Magnet isn’t super-strong.

Takeaway

A great little fishing net that is perfectly suited to kayak fishing. While not using the strongest magnet, that’s still a nice touch to prevent you from losing it, and the size ensures it’s not going to take up too much space if you’re carrying it along with one of these durable saltwater tackle bags.

Bubba Carbon Fiber Fishing Net

Bubba Carbon Fiber Fishing Net

When you’re talking about premium-quality fishing nets, then Bubba surely needs to be part of that conversation. They certainly make some outstanding fishing knives – that’s for sure.

This beast of a fishing net is designed to easily go head-to-head with a beast from the deep, made with a super-strong and durable carbon fiber, with full corrosion resistance for use in fresh and saltwater conditions.

The netting is plastic free and rated to hold up to 50 lbs worth of fish, and the handle is designed to fit most rod holders, ensuring you can keep it close to hand on any good fishing kayak or even a fishing paddle board.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Highly rated.
  • Rugged, durable construction with premium materials.
  • Choice of sizes available.
  • Non-slip grip.

Cons

  • Very expensive for a fishing net.
  • Might be a little large for some kayaks.

Takeaway

Well, you get what you pay for, and given that this net has been made from only the very best, high-end materials with plastic in sight – means you’re getting one of the best nets for kayak fishing on the market.

Wakeman Fishing Retractable Rubber Landing Net

Here we have another high-quality rubber net with a retractable handle, which makes it ideal for kayak fishing purposes.

The net design reduces the occurrence of tangles, which ensures it’s a good choice if you’re practicing catch and release, and you don’t want to harm the fish.

The opening is wide, with a large bottom to accept all sizes of fish, and it’s very deep – so you can be sure it’s not going to spill its contents back into the water.

Probably one of the best kayak fishing nets for larger creatures – put this to the test, and you won’t be disappointed.

Pros

  • Super strong and durable.
  • Good telescopic reach.
  • Highly rated for larger fish.
  • Nice price point for the quality.

Cons

  • A little on the heavy side.

Takeaway

Wakeman manufactures some fine fishing gear, and this is a great addition to their range. A solid and sturdy net that will surely land you a few whoppers. Fish – not burgers, that is.

Try this with one of these amazing tandem fishing kayaks the next time you want to go fishing with a buddy.

Fiblink Folding Fishing Landing Net

Here we have another compact fishing net that’s ideal for smaller vessels – or even if you’re using one of these nifty fishing float tubes.

Made with silicone net and a corrosion-resistant aluminum handle, you’re ensured of long term performance and reliable use for many years to come.

The EVA foam handle is slip-resistant, giving you greater control to land bigger fish, and there’s even a choice of fixed or telescoping nets to cater for your particular fish-landing needs.

Capable of use in salt and freshwater, this is a versatile fishing net that can go wherever you go.

Pros

  • Great price point.
  • Odorless, non-toxic silicone.
  • Choice of sizes available.

Cons

  • Can take time to set back up once dismantled.

Takeaway

A solid choice for a collapsible fishing net for kayaks. Just make sure to add the right net to cart – as the choice of nets from this company is extensive and can be a little confusing.

Oddspro Fly Fishing Net

Designed for fly fishing, this compact rubber-mesh landing net is also ideal for use in the kayak.

Made with an attractive wooden frame, it’s available with or without a magnetic hook, but comes with a lanyard and copper swivel anyway, so you don’t lose it on the river.

The high-grade wooden handle offers plenty of grip and gives the net a premium look and feel, while the tangle-free rubber mesh net is both kind to fish and designed to prevent hook snags.

As far as fishing nets go, this would make a great gift for a kayak angler or a fly fisher alike.

Pros

  • Great price for the quality.
  • Attractive look.
  • Compact design.
  • Durable construction.

Cons

  • The handle might be too short to land larger fish.

Takeaway

There’s no reason why this fly fishing net can’t be put to good use on a kayak, and the wooden handle gives it an old-school vibe. And if you are fly fishing, you can easily attach it to one of these stylish angling vests to complete the look.

EGO Blackwater Trout Net

EGO Blackwater Trout Net

Last but by no means least, we round out our review with another entry from EGO – this time the Blackwater trout net.

This is a brilliantly designed landing net that is as practical as it is smart, with an attractive red and black color scheme, and a durable look and feel.

It features a retractable quick draw cord for fast movement, an ergonomic handle with excellent grip for control and comfort, and a carabiner clip to keep it handy for when you need it.

There’s even a measurement scale printed on the fabric, so you can get a rough indication of the size of your catch when you’re bringing it in.

No more tall fishing tales down the pub, afterwards!

Pros

  • Attractive look.
  • Durable construction.
  • Highly rated.
  • Removable, zip-on net.
  • Lightweight and easy to carry.

Cons

  • None to speak of.

Takeaway

An awesome little net that is packed with useful features – particularly for kayak fishing. I particularly like how durable and robust it feels, and the measuring scale is a really nice touch.

How to Choose the Best Net for Fishing

Selecting the right fishing net for your needs might not be as straightforward as you’d think. You might get tangled up in choice.

With that in mind, check out the handy buyer’s guide below for all the things you need to consider before purchase.

And have you seen the latest and best inflatable fishing kayaks on the market? Before you get a kayak fishing net, you might want to upgrade your craft - so check them out at that link.

fisherwoman on inflatable kayak at lake with fishing tackle and net holding pike

Why You Need a Kayak Fishing Net

We’ve all struggled to land a fish. Fighting the monster is a huge part of the fun.

But that fun can swiftly turn to despair if an absolute beast slips from your grasp. They’ll never believe you in the bar afterwards.

That feeling of disappointment can be prevented - or at least reduced - if you’re using the right fishing net.

And given how tricky it is to land a fish when you’re angling from a kayak - it’s arguably even more essential.

Even when you’re using the best ocean fishing kayaks designed for choppier conditions - super sturdy craft that can handle a bit of swell - you still need all your wits and balance about you if you’re trying to reel in a behemoth.

And a good kayak fishing net will make it that much easier.

With the latest and greatest technologies in folding, telescoping, and highly portable nets - there’s no reason you can’t have one on board even if you’re short on space.

two fisherwomen on inflatable kayaks fishing at lake

Type of Nets

There are three main types of nets when it comes to kayak fishing.

  • Fixed frame nets don’t extend or retract, and they’re permanently in the ready position. This makes them the most durable of all nets, but they can be difficult to store and/or transport, depending on their size.
  • Folding/collapsible nets can be telescopic, or they can simply fold on themselves or be dismantled when not in use. They’re a popular choice for kayak anglers because of their space-saving properties, but sometimes can be tricky to get up in a moment’s notice.
  • Fly/River Fishing nets are short and compact, which makes them a practical choice for kayak angling in smaller vessels. They’re not so suitable for handling larger critters, but are great for not taking up vital storage room. Room that you need for your next fishing cooler, for example.

Size

When it comes to choosing the right size of fishing net, there are a few factors to consider.

You need to take into account the species of fish you’re going after - and the size of the fish you’re hoping to catch.

For more detailed information in helping you choose the right net size, check out the video below.

Portable and Practical

Aside from the actual size of the net opening and overall length of the tool, it’s important to consider how portable your fishing net is.

Now, this might not be that vital when you’re shore or bank fishing, or relaxing on one of these comfortable fishing chairs, as you have all the room in the world.

But on a kayak, space is at a premium, so you need something that’s going to be not just portable - but practical as well.

You’re not going to have much fun if you’re trying to fight a fish and open your landing net at the same time.

Look for kayak fishing nets that open and extend easily, with good-quality joints, hardware, fixings, and connections that won’t let you down in the heat of battle.

Net Mesh

The type of mesh that the fishing net has been made from makes a big difference - and you need to be aware of this - particularly if you’re practicing catch and release.

When sport or trophy fishing, and we want to let the critters back into the water for conservation purposes (and to let other anglers have some fun) then you need to choose a net that isn’t going to harm the fish.

Nylon nets tend to snag easily, fish scales can be grated off, and hooks can get caught - ensuring a Mensa-level challenge to untangle them.

Look for all rubber or rubber-coated nets if you’re not going to be eating your catch. They minimize damage to the fish by not rubbing off their scales, and won’t be nearly as harsh as a nylon mesh.

They limit snags and tangles, too, and are generally favored as the best possible net fishing net material available.

Look for nets that have slightly larger mesh holes, too, as this will also reduce the amount of hook snags - especially if you’re using treble hooks, for example.

red inflatable fishing kayak on the autumn river and fishing rod

Handle and Grip

The handle of a fishing net is a vital component in its design, as it’s this that’s going to help you with the leverage needed to land your catch.

Generally speaking, the larger the fish, the longer and stronger the landing net handle will need to be.

You need to strike a balance here, as having a super-long handle isn’t always practical when fishing from a kayak.

That’s why you should consider telescoping fishing nets, and perhaps even try one of these excellent telescoping fishing rods while you’re at it.

The grip is also important, and you need something that’s non-slip, so it doesn’t fling out of your hands in the midst of your fight.

EVA foam grips are the most common, but it’s a good idea to supplement their texture by wearing a pair of quality fishing gloves that will protect your hands and give you more control.

fisherman on inflatable fishing kayak with fishing tackle

Extra Features

Some fishing nets come with extra bells and whistles to entice you into making a purchase, and for the most part - they can be pretty useful.

Having a measuring scale on the handle is a simple and ingenious touch that should really be commonplace with any net that has a compatible size.

Some nets offer interchangeable heads and double as a versatile tool for multiple purposes, such as a deck brush, boat hook, lure retriever, and other useful accessories.

But perhaps the most useful extra feature a kayak fishing net could have - is that it floats.

Unfortunately, not all nets do, and in this review, unless otherwise specified for that particular product, I’m afraid the net is going to sink without a trace.

The trade-off is that floating nets aren’t always the strongest, so you need to weigh up what’s important to you.

It’s also important to choose nets that have belt clips or lanyards, so you can keep them attached to your person and not at the bottom of the river.

And to stop YOU from sinking to the bottom of the river, you should always wear one of these certified fishing PFDs - which is an essential and life-saving part of kayak fishing.

Finally, there are fishing nets out there that really go the distance and incorporate a flashlight, so you can see what you’re bringing in when the light is low.

While that’s all well and good, it doesn’t take away the need for a decent fishing headlamp anyway, so follow that link if you like to catch fish at night.

Cost

I’m sure you’ve noticed the price options in the reviews above for the best kayak fishing nets, and there can be quite a difference.

Premium-quality nets can cost close to and upwards of $100, but there’s no reason a $20 net won’t do the same job - especially if it’s been tried and tested on the water.

Always buy the best you can afford and perhaps spend a little more if you’re using it regularly, and want something that’s going to last.

angler fishing on a kayak in the fog

FAQs

Do I need a net for kayak fishing?

You don’t need a net for kayak fishing - or any type of fishing, for that matter.

But it’s going to be very beneficial for you and the fish if you have one - particularly if you’re practicing catch and release, and you don’t want to harm or distress the critter any more than absolutely necessary.

And in the end, I can guarantee you’ll lose more catches without a net than you would with one.

What’s that old adage? I’d rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it!

How much does a kayak fishing net cost?

Landing nets vary wildly in price, and you can pay anywhere from a few dollars (around $15-$20) to close to $200 - and sometimes more.

Do I need a special kayak fishing net?

Not particularly. I think there’s actually only one net in this review that’s been 100% designed for use on a kayak.

For the most part, a good compact or retractable net will do the job just as well.

Where should the net be on the kayak?

It should be within easy reach, but not interfering with angling, or paddling for that matter.

I attach my compact kayak fishing net within arm’s length of my seating position, just behind my left shoulder, hooked onto my kayak milk crate.

A spare rod holder is also another good location for a net - just so long as it’s out of the way and not likely to snag on anything.

But it’s up to you where you position yours - and you’re welcome to get creative!

How do you net a fish on a kayak?

Great question! It can be a challenge to “land” a fish on your kayak deck, especially when space is limited, you’re concerned about balancing, and you don’t want to be pulled overboard.

Thankfully, there are ways and means of safely bringing in a catch - even if it’s a giant!

Check out the video below, which shows you some top tips on proper kayak netting techniques.

Summary

There’s an abundance of options when it comes to choosing the best fishing kayak nets in 2022, but I hope this review has helped you sort the good from the bad.

Let me know in the comments which one you’ve gone for and why.

Until next time - tight lines and full nets, everyone.

Happy fishing!

Bob Hoffmann

The author of this post is Bob Hoffmann. Bob has spend most of his childhood fishing with his father and now share all his knowledge with other anglers. Feel free to leave a comment below.

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