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How To Use A Drift Sock In Rivers Or Current 2024

Drift socks can be a massive asset when your faced with current, either by a river, or a tidal system.

Manmade currents can also be produced from reservoir dams. Power companies will release or pump in water to make electricity and that will create a current.

Drift socks can provide you with a silent brake because they inflate with water as you are drifting, which slows down your movement.

Whether you’re doing some fishing or just want to take in more of the beatiful scenery, having something to decrease your drift speed can be truly priceless.

If you plan on using a drift sock in this situation there are some things you need to know before you attempt the task.

So, how to use a drift sock in rivers or currents? The answer depends on what your end goal is. There is a special strategy for slow-trolling/drifting (or “Strolling) and a separate strategy if you are anchored and you want to completely eliminate your boat or kayak from swaying back in forth in the current (or “pinning”). Therefore we strongly recommend following both suggestions so you can get the most out of your drift sock.

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Starting at the Beginning

Even if you never used a drift sock before, the job of deploying one is easy once you learn a few basics. If you really no idea what a drift sock is, or if you would like to have more detailed background into drift socks then start here… I wrote the complete blueprint report on Drift Sock Basics – What It Is & How To Use It [2021 Quick Start Guide]. Where I go into more detail on What Does A Drift Sock Do and Why Use A Drift Sock?

Where should I attach the drift sock on my boat or kayak?

The most common questions that anglers will ask is ‘where should they attach the drift sock harness?’… Does it need to be on the side, front, or back?

As a general rule, the most common placement for a drift sock would be at the back (aka the aft) of your kayak or boat. If you’re fishing on a boat or a tandem kayak this gives both anglers the opportunity to target the same structure.

However, there are exceptions to every rule…

If the current is slow and safe enough you can consider placing the drift sock in the middle of the boat. This should point you directly at the bank giving you good casting angles

It’s really not recommended to drift downstream in a current backward.

Drift sock located on the side

Drift sock located on the aft

Importantly, if you do happen to attach it to the aft of your boat make sure you keep the collapsing cord where you can reach it. It will make your life easier when you need to retrieve it.

For some larger boats, you might want to use multiple drift socks, but again, this is not a requirement. If face, the majority of the time, you’ll only need a single drift sock.

Drift Sock Installation – Floating Harness or Plain Rope?

Most drift socks are made out of either a polyester/vinyl material or durable material called ‘Rip-Stop’. Rip-Stop is a material that blends the strength and durability of plastic sheeting over a flexible, UV resistant, interlocking cotton lattice weave. 

Naturally, it is important to determine if you have all the required accessories that you need to operate a drift sock, because the last thing you want is to purchase one that requires additional accessories that need to be purchased separately.

For the most part, all drift sock will sink, so the overwhelming majority of anglers would suggest on buying a drift sock that comes in a kit with a floating harness

That way if it detaches itself, you will never worry about it sinking. It will simply stay afloat! Then you’ll have to go out and buy a new one!

Essentially, if you don’t have a floating harness, you’re risking to lose your drift sock forever, as opposed to having peace of mind that you could always go back and snatch it out of the water if it comes loose. 

You just have to make sure you know what you’re buying ahead of time, whether you want it mounted central or not. 


Fishing in current will force the fish to be close to the bank or hiding behind larger rocks and dips.

If the current is brisk, you could be missing out on targeting a lot of potential targets!

So to even the playing field you need a drift sock to slow down your drift or troll (i.e. “stroll”) by deploying your drift sock. You will instantly If you want to slow your drift down to a crawl, deploy your drift sock system so you can really pick apart all spots that you come across. 

Adjust your distance and casting angle from the bank by using your trolling motor (or paddle if your kayak fishing).

“Pin” Your Position

Pinning is a technique is utilized by avid saltwater anglers and cat-fisherman all over the world.

This is how you do it…

  1. Approximately 30-50 feet upstream drop an anchor from the bow of your boat.
  2. Slowly let out the line and allow the current to take you to the location you want to fish over or parallel to.
  3. Once you are at the desired location tie down the anchor line to a cleat to stop your downstream drift.  
  4. Next you need to deploy your drift sock off the aft of the boat… yes, the aft of the boat!
  5. The drift sock will inflate in the current and will straighten out your boat and literally “pin” it into position. 
  6. This strategy will also works well with kayaks.

Drift Socks in All Price Ranges

If you’re shopping around for drift socks, you’ll be surprised of how many designs, sizes, and price ranges they come in… which means everyone should be able to find one that perfectly suits their needs. 

If you’re curious about some of the best rooftop carriers on the market, consider the following products:

In A Hurry?

If you don’t have much time to read the detailed reviews, simply use the links below to quickly find the best drift socks for your boat, kayak, SUP, or canoe on Amazon. You can be assured we only choose the best products…

1. Mythik Outdoors Drift Sock Kit

Made by the Mythik Outdoors, this high-quality drift sock fits all the vast majority of boats or kayaks. They come in a complete kit. You get a insanely durable drift sock, a floating harness, a collapsing cord and a water resistant storage bag. 

It’s since it comes with everything you need it’s very easy to install. The water-repellant straps that are super-strong and long-lasting, and it comes with a UV resistant marine-grade 1/2-inch polypropylene cord! That is a AWESOME feature! That collapsing will prevent you from throwing out your back and making bringing in your drift sock a breeze. 

Weighing a mere 3 pounds, the Drift Master Drift Sock Kit is a steal at around $60 and is both mold-resistant and easy to store away when you’re not using it. Using this drift sock will give you ninja-like stealthiness thanks to its design, and has no moving parts to make any loud noise. It can help you save a ton of money because you wont have to invest in multiple batteries if you were to only use your trolling motor to slow your drift.

If you’re interested in this you can read all the reviews from actual Amazon customers. Click here!

2. Best For Large Boats - Cabalas 78" Pro Drift Sock

With a massive 78-inch drift sock you can practically stop the titanic… well maybe that being a little dramatic. The Cabela’s Advanced Anglers Pro Series is 100% upgraded reinforced nylon and made out of military-grade materials that will keep it working great for many years to come. 

You can attach the sock anywhere on your boat and it will perform. whether you have a roof rack or not, and it fits vehicles of all sizes and designs. It is also one of the most reasonably priced cargo carriers on the market and costs under $60.

The Cabela’s Advanced Pro Series Drift Sock has a built-in float in a small section of the bucket rim, and conversely, on the opposite side, it has a series of small weights sewn in. 

This is critical in order to help the drift sock open up quickly.

If you’re interested in this you can read all the reviews from actual Amazon customers. Click here!

3. Best Budget - MOOCY 32" Drift Sock

While MOOCY drift sock uses a lighter density nylon tear-prevention material it is nowhere near as heavy-duty as the Rip-Stop material that is used on the Mythik Outdoors Drift Master

Of the few times using it held up and worked as expected. 

A convenient floating harness is included when you buy a MOOCY drift sock which is a nice feature, but it lacks the collapsing cord or the storage bag. 

The MOOCY 32-inch drift sock would excel for someone who is on a budget, who is not going to be doing a large amount of drift fishing or doesn’t mind buying extra needed accessories like the collapsing cord or a storage bag. 

If you’re interested in this you can read all the reviews from actual Amazon customers. Click here!


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Accessories You’ll Need

Fishing Rod

RodThe popularity of fishing is growing and people are becoming much more conscious of different rods that can help them.

Fishermen want the best technique-specific rod for the money.

Luckily, the report I wrote provides you with detailed information in order for you to make buy the rod for the money, and more importantly which rods to avoid at all costs.

>> What Rods To Use For Bass Fishing? 10 Awesome General Purpose Rods Reviewed

Fishing Reel

Reel – Having the correct reel to match with your rod is just as important.  A good reel should be light and have a buttery smooth drag. There are several great reels on the market, but I recommend the a quality Shimano  baitcasting reel. It’s a great reel packed with great features. So much so that it could easily be priced in the mid $200 range.

>>How To Choose A Great Bass Fishing Reel For The Money [and which to avoid at all costs]

Fishing Line

Fishing Line – Having a good line is just as important as having a good rod. I recommend fishing with a good fluorocarbon line. Furthermore, it’s super sensitive because it has little to no stretch, and underwater it’s invisible to the bass!  If pride or money is on the line I would use Sunline Sniper FC.

>>21 Tips To Choose The Best Fishing Line

Fishing Lures & Baits

Fishing Lures – It’s pretty hard and darn near impossible trying to catch a fish without using some sort of lure or bait.  More importantly these baits you should never forget at home or it could lead to a horrible day on the water

>>5 Bass Fishing Lures You Never Want to Leave At Home

Fish Finder

Finding lunker bass has never been easier when using a fish finding sonar unit.  Packed with additional features to make your day on the water even easier.  Maps that can plan your day or help you find your way back even in the darkest of nights. Bright bold numbers and letters to make reading the maps easy even in the brightest of days, and colors that pop and make it quick and easy to identify fish. 

If you have a boat, kayak, canoe, or float tube, you need a fish finder. 

Here’s our choice for the best fish finder between $299-$800:


It has all the features for any serious fisherman whether you’re an avid weekend warrior, or a tournament angler. This has all the bells and whistles you’re looking for. 

>> Click HERE to Read The Reviews About Humminbird HELIX 7 CHIRP MEGA SI now

Here’s our choice for the best economic fish finder:

Garmin Stryker

While others look for bites, your fishfinder and GPS plotter help you reach your daily limit. You can mark preferred docks, ramps, and hotspots to easily return to them later and even share waypoints.

Click HERE to Read The Reviews About Garmin Stryker now!

Life Vest

According to Statista, “In the United States, 658 people died as a result of boating accidents and 2,641 people were injured in 2021.”

And it gets even worse… The National Safe Boating Council reported, “Where cause of death was known, 81% of fatal boating accident victims drowned.”

And if that’s not enough the incidence of deaths has climbed dramatically in recent years.

So if you’re on the water you NEED to wear your life vest. Protect you, your friends, and your families lives by wearing a life vest every time you’re on the water.

I recommend the ONYX PFD. It’s comfortable for all day use and there is lots of room for the air to move around so you won’t get sweaty.

>>Click HERE to read all the reviews actual customers!


Sunglasses – Do you find yourself fishing in variable light and water conditions? Fishing in open water? Fishing in the bright hot sun? Then, only to leave the lake with eye strain and a splitting headache?

If so, I strongly recommend investing in a pair of Costa Sun Glasses. Thousands of anglers, charter guides, and tournament professionals put their trust into Costa, and so should you. Here’s why…

Costa’s co-injected bio-based nylon frame material is robust and durable, as well as extremely comfortable to wear for all-day use. TR-90 nylon is an excellent material for sports and performance frames since it is heat and cold-resistant.
Costa builds their glasses with class-leading technology. Their 580G glass lens sets them apart from the competition. These lenses are ideal for long days on the lake or sea since you won’t have to worry about scratches on the lens when you wipe the saltwater off. Needless to say they’re Costa’s most durable lenses.

Anyone who spends time outside, especially on the lake, needs polarized lenses. However, not all polarized sunglasses are the same. Costa is 99.9% polarized, giving it the most effective possible in blocking reflecting glare, and minimizing eye strain and headaches.

>>Click HERE to Read The Reviews On These Costa Sunglasses Right Now!

Drift Sock

Simply speaking, a drift sock (also known as a drift anchor) is like a parachute for the water. It gives you the ability to silently troll without spooking the fish!

Anyone who fishes out of a boat, canoe, kayak, stand up paddle board, or any other type of floating vessel  should have a drift sock ready to use.

In addition to helping you catch more fish, recreational boaters also like to have 1-2 drift socks handy, just in case their motor goes out on them the drift sock will help slow their drift. This could be instrumental to allow rescuers to find that boat quickly and easily.

I strongly recommend the Drift Master Drift Sock by Mythik Outdoors.

The construction is solid. Holding this in your hands gives you the peace of mind this feels durable and dependable.

I love that it’s made from the gorilla-strong “RipStop” high density material, and I like that it’s even paired with the high-density nylon strapping.

It’s 30% stronger than other competitors who use a cheaper version of the RipStop material, so you never have to worry about his ripping.

Looking closely I can see they even triple stitched the high-tension points which is a good feature.

But best part… the Drift Master comes in a complete kit!

So get yours today and don’t leave yourself adrift.

The last thing to note is the Mythik Outdoors Drift Master drift sock kits sell out fast, so make sure you get yours before they’re gone!

>>Click HERE to Read The Reviews On This Drift Sock Today!

Landing Net

Landing Net – As you are reeling in that monster fish, you don’t want to injure yourself or knock the fish off the hook by trying to grab it.

The PLUSINNO floating landing net is designed with foam padding on the hoop and provides buoyancy for fishermen. Now, If the net is dropped or blown overboard, the floating design makes it simple to retrieve – so you won’t have to be concerned about losing it! The rubberized net cannot be snagged. It keeps the fish safe for catch-and-release, and the non-absorbent covering avoids waterlogging and odor absorption in the net.  It’s collapsing design allows for easy storage.

That’s why I recommend a dependable telescopic landing net.

>>Click HERE to Read The Reviews On This Floating Landing Net Today!

Fishing Weight Scale & Culler

Fishing Weight Scale – Whether you’re going to keep your catch or just take a photo of it and brag to your friends it’s important to have an accurate scale. The Rapala Tournament Model Touch Screen Scale makes weighing and logging your catch easier and more convenient. The large digital scale has a lot of functions and is easy to use. simply keep track of your current catch and its place in your overall weight. To see the weight, just suspend the catch from the heavy-duty composite clamp or the accompanying stainless steel hook.  Adding the important details to your catch couldn’t be easier – simply input your catch’s weight and tap on one of the eight storage places. The culling process makes it simple to identify fish that should be released for the greatest overall weight.

I recommend a Rapala Tournament Scale that has a large LED display like this one fishing scale here.

>>Click HERE to Read The Reviews on This Tournament-Grade Fishing Scale & Culling System now!