Caught on Film: Surf Landing Techniques with Jim Sammons

The trick to landing is to AVOID the surf as much as possible, to protect your expensive fishing gear. Notice Jim is paddling in right behind a foamer.

The trick to landing is to AVOID the surf as much as possible, to protect your expensive fishing gear. Notice Jim is paddling in right behind a foamer.

Words and Photos By Paul Lebowitz

Caught on Film is a weekly video series featuring fresh footage from you, our fishing friends, as well as the occasional pro tip, interview or boat preview. Please send us your best and biggest, fresh or saltwater, hook, hoopnet or harpoon, fumbles, fortunes and one-that-got-aways. We’ll select a new clip each week and award each winner with a one-year subscription to the magazine or something else cool pulled from our prize closet. Email editor@kayakfishmag.com for details.

Ready for the hard part? Launching through surf is easy, just point and go, go, go. The worst crashes come on the dismount.

Fortunately we have big water kayak angler Jim Sammons to drop some knowledge on us. If you get nothing else, get this: deliberately surfing in is for suckers and the exceptionally salty. Sammons gets to shred by the end of the video. Scroll down for a sequence of photos showing Jim keeping it safe.

For more of Jim Sammons, catch The Kayak Fishing Show on WFN TV and the NBC Sports Network, and the KayakFishingTales YouTube channel.


As Sammons approaches the danger zone, he's sizing up the pattern.

As Sammons approaches the danger zone, he’s sizing up the pattern.

Sammons picks a wave to follow - hopefully the larger set wave - and lets it break right in front of him. Then it is off to the races.

Sammons picks a wave to follow – hopefully the larger set wave – and lets it break right in front of him. Then it is off to the races.

He's past the impact zone, but on most beaches a broken wave will catch a kayak before dry land. Sammons reaches his paddle into the foam and leans on it, a trick known as the low brace.

He’s past the impact zone, but on most beaches a broken wave will catch a kayak before dry land. Sammons reaches his paddle into the foam and leans on it, a trick known as the low brace.

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