Monday, April 26, 2010

Gear Up! An Essential List of Paddling Gear

Hi everyone! I thought it would be a good time to "exchange" paddling gear lists. Here's a list of what I always pack for short 2-4 hour day paddles on flat water.

Take a look... leave some comments and let me know if I'm missing any essential gear. Let's compare lists!

Mike's Paddling Gear List

PFD (wear it always)


Sun screen (apply before paddle and carry on boat)

Paddle leash

Cell phone




Change of clothes (dry bag)

First aid kit

Water resistant paddling pants (or shorts) depending on temperature

Water resistant socks

Water shoes

2-3 water bottles

Trail mix

Will purchase and carry both an extra paddle and paddle float. I'll be installing some additional stern shock cord...waiting on some kayak hardware...and then I'll be able to lash this extra gear to my kayak's deck.


  1. Good list Mike. I like to carry a GPS because rivers don't have many intersections to help people find you in the case of unfortunate disaster. Coast Guard generally seeks coordinates when providing aid on waterways.

    Spray skirt is another good item to have if going in areas where waves can grow in size (open water areas).

    Binoculars are a favorite to carry in a kayak to watch wildlife with a closer view. If you want to capture some of those views, a camera would come in handy, too.

    Insect repellent might be a blessing if certain biting bugs are out in force.

  2. Hey Rob. Yeah, I did forget to list a camera. It only makes Durhamblogger possible with pictures of my paddling adventures! GPS is a device I need to look into for myself. Do you have any suggestions or ideas of what to look for in a GPS? Models? Best place to purchase them? I really do not know much about GPS technology.

  3. That's pretty much my list for a day trip as well. I usually throw a mesh bag with tiolet paper (in ziplock), lighter, headlamp, and that sort of thing in a small drybag.

    Great site BTW. We've paddled the Mississippi River, and I've gone down the Neuse and Cape Fear Rivers as well. All these long trips are basically a whole bunch of day trips strung together.

    There's some gear lists and whatnot on our website if you want to check them out. It's

    Source to Sea Project

  4. Hi John! Welcome aboard Durhamblogger! Good additions to the paddle list - especially the TP! ;-) BTW... I also have a stern light that can be rigged quickly with approaching darkness, fog, and other adverse weather conditions. I just don't always stow it in the kayak. Your Mississippi River paddling trip must have been fantastic! Would love to hear details about it sometime...


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