Shopping or renting for a kayak for the first time can be a challenging task because you most likely don’t know some of the kayaking accessories that come with it. You can find it even more confusing when you meet a salesperson who doesn’t understand kayaking. In order to get everything right when purchasing a kayak, you need to find an experienced seller with hands-on knowledge on watercraft accessories. Another way of understanding the accessories you need for your craft is by taking sea kayaking classes.
Why You Need Kayaking Accessories
Kayaking is inherently dangerous for both novice and experienced kayakers, especially when the right accessories are not used. Humans cannot survive in water as sea creatures do. When water drops below 60 degree Celsius, you’ll encounter the risk of cold water paddling. With that, you need a wetsuit or drysuit to survive. It can also be dangerous if you paddle beyond a swimmable distance and something tragic happens. That, plus a host of other factors like extreme weather conditions, waves and water currents can make kayaking quite challenging.
Basic Kayaking Accessories You Should be equipped with:
1. Kayak Lifevest
For added safety at sea you need a kayaking-specific lifevest when paddling. These types of vests are mainly characterized by snug fit and higher back. That ensures you sit properly and paddle comfortably. Other model of kayaking lifevest may include multiple pockets and tabs for keeping stuff and/or tow belt attachments.
2. Kayak Paddle
It goes without saying that you need a kayaking paddle to venture into the sea with your craft. But you have to consider getting a nicer, lighter and reasonably sized paddle for easy kayak maneuvers. A high-end carbon fiber can particularly great for any type of kayak paddling.
3. Paddle Float
Paddle float is one of the accessories that can help you when you fall out of your kayak. Designed with inflatable bag around the paddle blade, the paddle float can act as an outrigger for getting back into the kayak. Most of models in the market feature dual chambers and large mouth that make inflating and activating the accessory easier.
4. Bilge Pump
A bilge pump is usually used in getting rid of water from a kayak after capsize or when water splashes into the craft. You might use a bucket to do the same but it won’t be that effective in a kayak. With a bilge pump you can pump out the water quickly and maintain stability of your vessel.
A whistle is a great kayaking accessory that can help you communicate effectively with other paddlers or alert rescue team during an emergency. Some whistles come in a signal mirror and whistle combo, which makes getting out of distress at sea with your kayak easier.
Other types of kayaking accessories you need for your kayak include:
6. Spray Skirt: To keep water out of the boat
7. Dry Bags: They keep your gear and personal accessories dry when paddling in the water
8. Rescue Sling: It will help you get back into the back into the boat after falling, by giving you something to step on.
9. Compass and Map: They can help you figure out the waterways and find the right direction to go.