Paddling Along

The next best thing to kayaking is the stuff needed to go kayaking and the optional items that can make kayaking more fun. Kayaks and paddles come in many different types and styles, and selecting the right one often depends on what kinds of kayaking are done. For example, a longer boat may be a better choice for kayaking on the Chesapeake Bay than a shorter one. The great thing is that there are many different boats to choose from. Many stores have a "Demo Day" where you can try a wide selection of boats in a calm inlet. It is important to remember that the characteristics of a boat in wind or rougher water are different than in calm water.

Taking a Break Selecting the right equipment for paddling is important from a safety perspective and an enjoyment perspective. Unfortunately, much of the kayaking equipment is expensive, so having a fleet of twenty kayaks allowing for optimal selection based on conditions is impractical. In cases where cost is not a concern, storing a fleet of twenty kayaks may not be simple either.

I have listed some the equipment I take on my paddling trips and some of the key features to consider about each item. Since there are often a large number of good choices about equipment, the ideal item is often a matter of personal preference.

Kayaking Equipment