Saturday, January 29, 2011

How much gear is enough?

Paddle partners

On Tuesday past Malcolm did a presentation on how he outfits his kayak with all the gear laid out on display. There was a pile of stuff. Its understandable because Malcolm and Des frequently paddle together and they paddle in challenging conditions often far from shore.

The vast majority of people paddle on fair weather days close to shore and in larger groups. I doubt they are as well outfitted. I know myself I have to improve in that sense. Often on those fair weather days all I have in my day hatch is lunch.

Even on good weather days the weather can change unexpectedly, someone may get trashed in a rock garden or suffer some other calamity. That doesn't mean everyone should carry an EPIRB but enough safety gear should be carried to deal with any possible event in the area being paddled. Better to be safe than sorry.

1 comment:

  1. I do have a lot of gear, but a lot of it is either a one time purchase (e.g. deck mounted towing system) or something that will need to be replaced infrequently (e.g. flares). Much of my gear relates to safety and is either for communicating (e.g. VHF radio) or signaling location (e.g. marker dye). It seems like I have a lot because I have purposefully built in redundencies (e.g. SPOT plus EPIRB). The rationale is simple: if A doesn't work, then B probably will. Most people won't go with this "gear intensive" approach. However, having a basic kit for communications and signaling is important whenever you paddle.