Paddling Tips

Equipment Tips

  • Wear sunglasses. Polarized ones are great on the water since they reduce glare. We recommend sunglasses that wrap around your ears, with a keeper to prevent loss in the water.
  • Keep a small waterproof bag tied to your kayak deck or canoe thwart to hold binoculars or a camera.
  • With the possible exception of pond paddling, always carry a map or chart and compass and know how to use them. Weather can be unpredictable, and getting caught off shore (especially in a fog) without a chart and compass can be hazardous.
  • Pack your kayaking gear into many small bags rather than a few larger ones (the openings to cargo spaces in kayaks are small). Bring a mesh gear duffle along with you to carry it all into camp.
  • Choose a kayak with good lower back support, or outfit your boat to provide it. This will also help decrease back discomfort. (Good posture is important when paddling. It helps with the rotation for paddling properly and also helps with balance.)
  • Remember when packing your kayak that metal items, such as a stove and cook pots, can affect your deck compass. Pack these away from your compass for more accurate readings.
  • Carry a small windbreaker and a light fleece pullover in your gear bag so you'll always have warm and dry clothes available.
  • Keep your fiberglass canoe or kayak looking good with colored car wax that matches your boat's color. Commercially available sun protectant is a good idea, too.

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