Fish Finder on Scotty Mount

Scotty mounted fishing accessories like fish finders are really popular on kayaks. The Catch 120 NXT has three short tracks that will accept Scotty and other track mounted accessories. My fish finder is a whole other kind of Scotty mounted.

My name is Scott, no relation, and I mount my fish finder on my wrist. In fairness to the awesome company from British Columbia, Canada, they have been around about a decade longer than me so I’ll let them keep the naming rights. Besides, my mom is the only one that calls me Scotty.

Image of Hummingbird Smartcast RF30 fish finderThe fish finder I use is an older model of the Hummingbird Smartcast RF30. I don’t know if you can buy these anymore. I’d probably opt for one of the newer model portable fish finders if I was buying one today. I’d probably also mount it with a Scotty mount accessory. The issue with the Smartcast, and most fish finders that use a wireless, floating transducer, is that the transducer battery cannot be changed. When it dies, you buy a new transducer. Other than that it works fine but it is very basic compared to today’s best small, portable fish finder / depth finder / GPS units.

Fish Finders for Kayak Fishing

You won’t see one on our Gear page because I don’t own one but if I was buying new, the models I’d consider today are:

These are lower-end models with attractive prices (lower than the price paid for my Smartcast years ago). They are water resistant. I’d hate to lose one overboard for financial and environmental reasons but it would hurt less than losing a $500 top of the line model. And the $500 model wouldn’t do much more for me in the waters I fish than these less expensive units.

I would avoid smartphone powered fish finders because I keep the phone in a dry bag for safety. I do have a water proof phone bag that allows touchscreen operation but it creates a lot of glare.

The small fish finders mount nicely on a Scotty Gear Head track adapter and Scotty mount (probably on a Scotty extended gear head adapter for optimum positioning) and with either a Scotty transducer arm or a scupper hole mounted transducer, can be fitted to a kayak very nicely. The Garmin is my pick because it has built-in GPS and the related ability to mark good fishing spots to easily find them again later. When the transducer battery in the Smartcast dies, you may see this or its successor added to our gear page.

You might be wondering why I wouldn’t spend a little more and go for the Garmin Striker 4dv. The 4dv scans deeper and has higher transmit power. Great if you’re on a big boat in deep water with a huge battery. On a kayak, in kayak appropriate waters, the 4dv gives you less battery life and little benefit. The 4dv is a good unit. It just makes less sense for this particular use.