Newburyport, MA—June 15, 2012—When it comes to kayak fishing, Fly Fish America ranks the Freedom Hawk ’14 Pathfinder as the best fishing kayak on the market. In a new YouTube video, the magazine features the boat in a demonstration with Freedom Hawk President David Hadden.
Florida — surf and sandy beaches: That’s a valid association for much of the state’s extensive coastline. But the shore along the entire bottom of the long peninsula is a very different world. Here, upper Florida Bay is characterized by shallow, muddy, or tannic stained bays and bights lined with impenetrable mangrove jungles... But the area is tailor made for poling ultrashallow, ultrastealthy kayaks. And for several days last year, that’s just what a group of us did.
Newburyport, MA—May 9, 2012—A new international retail partnership has introduced stand-up kayaking and patented stand-up fishing kayaks to Canada. Freedom Hawk Kayaks and SAIL Outdoors Inc., have joined forces to introduce the award-winning Pathfinder and other Freedom Hawk angling kayaks to SAIL retail locations in Eastern Canada. The unique line of river and saltwater kayaks features a patented outrigger system that enables anglers and hunters to stand safely and comfortably with superior sight.
Freedom Hawk Kayaks, manufacturer of stand-up kayaks for fishing, announced today that its Pathfinder angling kayak received a 2012 Editor’s Choice Award from Fly Fish America. The publication’s editors select winners among the best fly-fishing kayaks and other products in its "Best of the Best New Fly Fishing Gear" annual guide.
The very first big advantage you notice about any Freedom Hawk Kayak is the incredible ease and safety of entry and exit from the boat. Extending the pontoons into position 2 (Y configuration), the boat has the stability of an 8–foot wide floating platform. Standing in knee deep water, simply hold onto the boat somewhere and step on board. If you raise the stand up bar, you can even just grab hold of it and step up into the boat to a full standing position. Don't try that with your grandpa’s canoe! The Elite Angler Seat makes the entry and exit process a whole lot more pleasant, too. Then again, it makes almost everything about the Pathfinder more pleasant. Once on board the kayak, simply retract the pontoons and off you go.
Trapper Rudd is insane. That is the conclusion normal people would come to when they see him dragging his Freedom Hawk through mangroves and mosquito infested creeks in god forsaken locations from Mexico to Africa. I prefer to think of him as a genius. He takes his kayak where nobody else goes. He paddles there under his own power, pops out the two stability outriggers and then stands up so he can spot fish. He catches fish as if he were the patron of a $4000 per week lodge when actually he is a DIY Maverick with the credo, "have kayak will travel". The new Pathfinder is a larger pimped–out version of the original Freedom 12. It has a standard lean post, three water tight compartments, self–bailing scupper holes and adjustable foot braces.
The idea is simple. To catch more fish, you need to stand. And, to assist you in this endeavor, Freedom Hawk’s kayaks are engineered as the most technically advanced fishing kayaks in the world. In short, they are designed to put you in a position to catch more fish...
American Based Freedom Hawk Kayaks is opening up European venues for business with new distribution deals. David Hadden, president of Freedom Hawk Kayaks, has managed to sign up deals with distributors in Spain and France, while servicing existing clients in Sweden and Norway, among others.
He said: "Our new boat, the Pathfinder, is opening up fresh markets for us. Its design means it can be used in both calm and rough conditions....
Regular readers might know that I quite like kayak fishing and have tested a few different models here on previous occasions. To be honest, I didn’t quite know what to expect when the opportunity to test a ‘stand up’ kayak came along, even though I had seen the adverts of the Freedom Hawk in this magazine over the past few months. Anyhow eager as always to test something new, I arranged to meet up with Mike Shanks and have a closer look at the Freedom 12.....
The Sell: The ultimate hard use angler.
The Test: Whether you are stalking yellow fin tuna or musky, this kayak gives you the stability and flexibility to land your quarry. The secret is in the stern which splits into a three positioned outrigger. Snapped together the stern looks like a normal kayak with dry storage in each pontoon. Flip the levers and the back splits into a Y Shape for stand up fishing. Flip it again and they spread wider for maximum trolling stability. The Hawk 12 allows angler to fish while seated in the high back chair, stand on the padded raised platform, or lean against the retractable casting brace.
The Verdict: It is a simple and smart design with highly functional details.
What is Freedom Hawk’s business philosophy? David Hadden: Freedom Hawk was founded in 2006 with the goal of making the ultimate fishing kayak in the world. While some companies simply add rod holders to existing models, our boats are designed from the hull up with the aim of making you a better angler. We started with the premise that to fish better you need to fish from a standing position. We are the only kayak company to offer a built-in patented outrigger system that allows the kayak to transform from a traditional sit-on-top kayak to a fishing platform in seconds by simply moving two levers.
The most common and effective method of catching sails is to fish a livebait under a kite. This keeps the bait on the surface of the water, which is essential when fishing for sails. It is also extremely difficult to do on a kayak, so I choose the next best thing, slow trolling. Sailfish do not like a moving bait, and best results are achieved by keeping the bait as still as possible and only paddling just fast enough to keep the line tight, which stops the bait from tangling itself in the leader...
Destination angling has long held a mysterious, romantic and adventurous appeal. I’ve always envied residents of Central American countries that remain, to this day, relatively secluded and unpopulated. I often wonder how one would ever get any real work done with miles upon miles of mangrove shorelines, creeks, channels, bays and lagoons beckoning...
Jon Shein of Kayak Fishing Magazine speaks directly about what makes the Freedom 12 such an outstanding tool for tracking their catch. Take it from Jon: "The folks down at ‘Cast and Blast’ in Texas discovered with the outriggers deployed one could use a canvas seat in the cockpit and paddle from this elevated sitting position. I loved it and that’s the first thing I checked. I wanted to make sure this attribute worked for the 12. I can attest that it does." He goes on to ad, "Nobody is buying a Freedom Hawk for paddling. It’s a standup fishing vessel and does so superbly."
Tropic Bay Kayak Fishing Classics is proud to announce they have awarded the Freedom 12 kayak, made by Freedom Hawk Kayaks, the Kayak of the Year award for 2010. The high-quality kayak allows users to stand safely and comfortably while fishing, providing users, especially tournament fishermen, a huge advantage. The kayak′ patented "Integrated Outrigger" design makes it lightweight, strong and stable, as well as attractive.
Freedom Hawk Kayaks made a splash with its new Freedom 12 at the recent ICAST Show in Orlando, Florida. David Hadden (Director of Sales and Marketing) and Guy Tillotson (Grand Slam Group/Florida Sales Rep) show off the new model.
The new product is a shrewd design with movable pontoons that easily allow you to get in the most impossible fishing locations. Inflatable pontoons can be unstable but with solid pontoons, it creates a very stable platform to fish from.
Let me confess that, prior to this trip, I was no fan of kayaks. Their fatal flaw, in my thinking, was poor vision. An angler seated in a kayak is very close to the water. It's hard to spot fish from a low angle. However, kayaks are quieter and less obtrusive than even the smallest flats skiffs, allowing closer approach without spooking the fish. When you add the ability to fish from the standing position, this old kayak-hater quickly became a convert!
One of the coolest kayaks on the market has been completely redesigned for 2009, offering fly-fishers affordable access to the water — with no gasoline required. Freedom Hawk Kayaks have generated buzz with fly-fishers over the past couple years because of a uniquely designed hull that allows anglers to stand and cast with relative ease — something that cannot be said of most kayaks.
The Freedom Hawk kayak is one of the most innovative designs I have seen in years. The 14-foot hull looks like any other sit-on-top kayak, but has a bifurcated stern consisting of identical halves. When you want to stand, you lift up on two levers and the stern splits in two, with each half angling outward at a 45-degree angle.
Well, we may have just found perfection, and its name is Freedom Hawk. It's the first "angling kayak" designed specifically
for casting from a standing position. The company's motto is "Cruising to Fishing in Seconds," and it really is as simple as
that. The Freedom Hawk can transform from its traditional, streamlined kayak shape, to a stable platform with stern outriggers with just the
push of a handle. The outriggers are easily removed for transport and packing, and like the rest of the kayak, are rotomolded from
The Freedom Hawk 14 fishing kayak has taken the industry by storm, allowing fly anglers to stand up to cast in complete safety. The Freedom Hawk's patented outriggers transform its traditional, streamlined kayak shape into a stable fishing platform with just the push of a handle.
New for 2009, Freedom Hawk has reduced the weight by 15%, reinforced the floor for extra rigidity, added additional scuppers, and reduced the price to $1,695.
We do a lot of fishing from kayaks—in rivers, lakes and in the salt. They allow us to access prime fishing spots that wading and big-boat anglers just can't get to. They're easy to transport and launch, provide a stealthy fishing platform, and are one of the most enjoyable ways to wet a line. But they're certainly not perfect for fly fishing—until now.
The shape and weight of the kayak meant paddling was slower than some other similar sit ons, although with stability as good as this, that's a compromise most people could live with. All up the Freedom Hawk is an impressive kayak. No other kayak I've ever paddled had the same excellent stability. Even without the pontoons deployed, it was more stable than most. If it's a serious fishing kayak you're after, take a look at the Freedom Hawk.