A unique and highly effective manner of presenting live bait to offshore fish is kite fishing. Specialized equipment is required; however, you don’t have to break the bank to obtain the necessary gear. While the process of flying a kite seems simple, fishing by way of kites challenges the most experienced anglers. Learn about what is needed, how to fly a kite, and what types of fish are caught from kites. 

What Kind Of Fish Do You Catch Kite Fishing

The utilization of kites draws strikes from a vast range of species. However, the majority of the fish are offshore pelagics in blue water. 

Live baits, including goggleyes or mullet under kites, catch wahoo, kingfish, tuna, cobia, sailfish, marlin, dolphin, and occasionally snapper venturing up from the bottom along reef lines. Anglers most frequently catch a mixed bag of species compared to honing in one particular type. 

What Is The Purpose Of Kite Fishing

The purpose of kite fishing is the keep baits at the surface of the water. Baits must be live to achieve a natural presentation. Additionally, fishing lines are free from the water as only the hook, and rigged fish are beneath the surface. 

Can You Kite Fish From Shore

Yes, the technique was developed by shore anglers. While kite fishing is most common by boat in the United States, the opportunity presents itself to deploy kites from the beach. 

Limited numbers of species are caught from the shore. The most common catches from beaches are kingfish when compared to the abundance of fish types found further offshore. 

What Do I Need For Kite Fishing

Utilizing kites requires a multitude of items, including reels, specialized rods, and terminal tackle. 


The kite is composed of nylon fabric with carbon fiber spars. Some of the most popular brands include SFE and Bob Lewis. 

Multiple kites are necessary as they are designed to fly under specific ranges of wind speeds. Take caution when handling the spars as they are easily broken, and replacements costs are substantial. 

Kite Rod And Reel

Avoid heading to the tackle shop and purchasing a shiny new reel. Look for an old Penn Senator reel stashed away in the garage or pick one up used. Spool the reel with 80-pound spectra line. An alternative to hand cranking is buying an electric reel and installing a plug onboard the vessel. While electric reels prevent arms from becoming sore, they are costly.

Kite rods are funky-looking. The two to three-foot rod holds the reel in addition to one guide at the tip. To prevent the rod and reel combo from sailing away, attach a lanyard while securing the other end to the vessel. 


Grab an extended-sized shopping cart when you walk into the tackle store. You’ll need circle hooks, fluorocarbon leader, rigging rubber bands, helium kite balloons, stopper rings, release clips, kite floats, and more. 

Neatly place all of the accessories in a clear box with a lid and label the box “kite fishing gear.” Every time you head offshore, bring the container as it will have all of the accessories in place. 

How Do You Rig A Kite Rod

Rigging a kite rod is a straightforward process. Utilize three clips on the spectra line to maximize bait presentation.

Kite release clips slide up and down the spectra line. Stoppers are in place based on pre-determined increments. We recommend spacing the clips at 60 feet apart. The clips stop in the correct position as the kite is deployed based on the diameter of the opening in which the line passes and catches a stopper. 

A snap swivel is secured to the end of the line. The kite connects to the line via the snap swivel. 

What Are The Best Fishing Rod Combinations For Kite Fishing

Spinning combinations are most effective for kite fishing. Offshore anglers utilize medium-heavy rods and 6500 sized reels. Spool the reels with 20 pound monofilament fishing line. 

Keep in mind three clip kite rods require three spinning combinations to maximize the number of baits presented.  

How Do You Set Up The Fishing Rod And Reel

To set up the spinning reels, slide a stopper ring, kite float, ¼ egg sinker, and snap swivel on the mainline. Beneath the mainline, connect a 12-foot fluorocarbon leader and a 6/0 circle hook. Ensure that all knots are snug. 

Is Kite Fishing Good

The results from fishing with kites are excellent. Anglers find success as a result of the natural presentation of baits.

Rigged bait swims freely beneath a kite at the surface of the water. The baits natural motion and displaying distressed tendencies, including erratic movement, entices gamefish to strike. 

While kite fishing is effective, the process is a learning curve. Expect kites to become dipped in the water. Wet kites must dry before redeploying. With time you will become a pro. 

Are You Ready To Head Out Kite Fishing 

While fishing with kites presents its challenges, seasoned anglers find unmatched success. Keep in mind that helium balloons are required to keep the kite aloft on days with little to no wind. Lastly, for best results, position the baits directly at the surface to maximize the number of strikes.