Get Socialize

2016/17 USCG Policy on DIY Kayak Navigation Lights for Fishing Kayak

August 22, 2017 184 No Comments


If you want to install DIY navigation lights on your kayak, you need to review this entire video to understand the current USCG policy on lighting for “vessels under oars.” As a result of the issues we raised related to the policy covered in the previous video (linked below) on navigation lights for kayaks operating in USCG controlled water, the USCG did a review of the navigation rules including input from their legal team. I cover the resulting change and the new (Sept 2016) USCG guidance in this video. This result proves mature, polite and persistent dialog can produce changes in government policy! I also want to thank KayakDIY for his thoughtful comments.

The USCG updated their navigation rules FAQ page to include kayaks – see FAQ 13 and 14 at this link:


Link to old video with the previous policy:

IMPORTANT! The rules could change again in the future and it is up to each of us to stay current. Do not rely on this video.

The Kayak Hacks Fishing channel covers kayak, wading, shoreline, spin and fly fishing. It features interesting gear mods to make kayak fishing more comfortable, efficient and enjoyable. In addition, I share many tips, tricks and “how tos” for more effective spin and fly fishing regardless of whether you are fishing from a boat or on your feet. Please subscribe! Thanks!

Steve’s CatchGuide series of fishing books is available on Amazon:
Wade and Shoreline Fishing the Potomac River for Smallmouth Bass –
Maryland Trout Fishing –
Wade Fishing the Rappahannock River of Virginia –
Wade Fishing the Rapidan River of Virginia –
Wade Fishing the North Branch of the Potomac –

Read Steve’s columns in:
Southern Trout Magazine –
Southern Kayak Fishing –

Affiliate Disclaimer:
Any product link to Amazon is an affiliate link. Other product links may be as well as I develop relationships with sellers. I appreciate your support in using those links since the small commission generated offsets the cost of the stuff I test for the channel. Thanks!

Liability Disclaimer and Warning:
In short, you accept all risk of using any ideas presented in this video.

Do not apply any suggestion if it will ruin the appearance, function or structural integrity of your kayak. You are solely responsible to determine if the ideas expressed are appropriate for your boat and we disclaim any responsibility for your actions and decisions.

Nothing in this video creates any expressed or implied warranty or guarantees a result. You are responsible for the safe operation of tools and any injury, damage, or loss that may result from improper use of those tools or from the information contained in this video is 100% your responsibility. We shall not be held liable in any way or manner for errors, misleading or incorrect information. If you find an error, please notify us right away using the contact form for the channel.

It goes without saying that fishing is dangerous as a result of the fast water, slick rocks and other hazards that occur at random, unexpected places. You need to exercise caution, particularly in the spring when the water is high or during rapid changes in tide, before you fish anywhere. You should always wear a life vest when fishing. In addition, a wading staff will help you keep your balance as you walk on the shoreline or wade.

The bottom line is that you must make your own judgment in terms of acceptable behavior and risk and not rely on the opinions expressed here. The regulations governing legal access to fishing locations may change at any time and it is your responsibility to understand the law. Nothing expressed should be construed as encouraging you to trespass on private property or violate a regulation.


Inshore fishing