As a new Canoeist you will need some essential canoeing equipment. However this includes more than just a canoe and paddle. It is important to keep in mind the weight of the things you bring you could be hiking to the water or carrying your gear for long distances. Keeping safety in mind while you prepare for your canoeing trip will require you to have safety equipment to go with your boat and paddle in this article you will learn about those devices and how they will benefit you on your first canoeing experience or better future canoeing experiences.
The first and perhaps most important item you will need is a canoe. Their are many different types of canoes and you will need the one that best suits your canoeing. The most common is the recreational canoe they are durable and made of aluminum or strong plastic common for your basic paddling around a lake and offer a more stable ride most recommended for beginners. However, also available are advanced canoes for racing and whitewater canoes for river paddling these canoes commonly lighter and faster in the water but have a higher chance of tipping over if you go with the more advanced canoe be sure to take more safety precautions. The next item you will need is a paddle you cant canoe without a paddle since this is what propels the boat. You will need to consider the number of paddles you will need to have usually one for each person and a spare in case of emergency that should be secured inside the canoe. The type of canoe paddle you choose should be fairly comfortable in your hands. However the common paddle will do just fine.
Also, you will need life jackets no matter how great a swimmer you may be you will definitely need a personal floatation device. One for each person in the canoe with out it most places will not allow you to canoe and it could be illegal to canoe without a PFD. Also a life ring just in case someone is drowning not a requirement in a canoe but you never know when it could be handy. If you plan to whitewater canoe you will also want to have helmets and float bags which keep your canoe from sinking if you flip over. Other emergency gear you may consider will be a first aid kit, pocket knife in case of getting tangled in ropes or needing to cut something open, lighter or waterproof matches for starting a fire, flashlight, map and compass in case you get lost. To go with that you will not want to forget water you want to have a way to bring water up to a liter with you on your canoeing trip. Snacks are also a good thing to have in a water proof bag and if you plan to camp as well as canoe you want to have a mess kit usually includes a bowl, cup and spoon.
Some non-essential canoeing equipment but still worth consideration is wetsuits, drysuits, pants, and paddle jacket, gloves to help with the paddling and other clothing items depending on your weather situation. Be sure to waterproof these items a simple trash bag can work but there are waterproof bags you can buy. Water shoes are a great idea as well but dont forget your regular shoes in case of having to hike. Other personal items you want to keep in mind depending on the time you plan to spend on your canoe trip are toilet paper, sunscreen, towel, brush, small soap, toothbrush and toothpaste. Keep in mind that you are most likely going to run into bugs you will need bug reppelant or at least a mosquito net. to make your trip more comfortable you may want to look into gettin a chair pack which straps to your canoe seat and makes it a chair smart for long rides. If you plan to fish on your canoeing trip don’t forget those poles!