Kayak Tips

VHF Radios for Kayaking

VHF Radios models come and go about as quickly as cell phones. So my standard advise about which radio to buy is to go to your local marine supply store (West Marine and Lummi Fish Supply are common in the NW) and ask for a knowledgeable sales person to help...

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Skeg Cable Repair or Replacement Instructions

 Most sea kayak skeg control systems are put together similarly, but the details can make instructions for how to repair a bent or jammed skeg cable specific to a brand and sometimes it depends on the model year. So we will offer some individual instructions here by brand and range...

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VHF Radios for Sea Kayaking

Waterproofing As of 2016, none of the VHF radios on the market are waterproof enough to meet my standards of "kayak waterproof". The weak links for all of them are generally the battery cover and the silly rubber stopper plugs for headset/earpieces and remote microphones (Silly in that these are...

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Customizing Kayak Seats

Question from a customer: I'm considering replacing the seat in my kayak. I find the way it angles up a strange way to sit, plus I don't think I need a big plastic, stiff seat wrapping around from one hip to another. I'm thinking about taking the seat out, and...

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Waterproof LED, Xenon, and Halogen Lights and Strobes for Sea Kayaking

The following table lists all the waterproof flashlights, headlamps, and strobe lights that I use for sea kayaking. To the left of each item I've listed where I stow it ... lights won't do you any good unless they are stowed such that you have access to them and can...

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Replacement Gaskets and Latex Dry-Socks for Dry Suits and Dry Tops

Click the above left links if you are ready to order gaskets or have K.A. replace your gasket(s) for you. We often receive questions such as this one: Re: Replacement gaskets for a dry suit.The neck gasket tore on my dry suit, so it needs to be replaced. Also, I...

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How to Patch a Dry Suit

Do you sell a patch to fix a 1/8 inch tear in my dry suit? If so, what else do I need to do the repair? For bigger tears we sell a GoreTex patch kit (assuming yours is a GoreTex suit), but for an 1/8 inch hole you don't need...

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Wind and Current Directions

Wind and current directions are based on opposite conventions. This can lead to confusion when looking up the direction of an ebb or flood in current tables. Even a "land lubber knows that "wind direction" tells you where the wind is coming from. Yet people often stumble on the concept...

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Mirages and Green Flashes Explained

Many of you have been in lessons with me when I've pointed out towering and other mirages commonly seen on or near the water, and often the subject of Green Flash has come up while we have been camping on overnight and longer training trips. Here is a link to...

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Spare Paddle Weight and other Cost/Benefit Comparisons

Lets begin with thoughts about your spare paddle. Many people consider low cost to be the most important factor when choosing a spare paddle. Unfortunately the less a paddle costs, the more it usually weighs. Yet you might be tempted to go cheap in this case since it is unlikely...

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Kayak Rack Buying Guide for Sea Kayakers

The most common cause of serious damage to sea kayaks is transporting them -- not using them. On the highway you want to protect your kayaks from damage and prevent any liability issues from their flying off your vehicle and causing damage/injury to others. Good racks are not cheap, but...

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How To Carry Spare Batteries on Kayak Trips

After more than twenty years of failures, I’ve finally found a reliable way to carry spare batteries while sea kayaking - in spare waterproof LED flashlights. Batteries in a zip-lock bag are certain to get wet. Putting the zip-lock bag inside a dry bag buys a little time, but the...

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Sea Kayak Gear that Cannot Be Taken On Airplanes

Many common everyday sea kayak safety and camping items are prohibited on airplanes. So if you are planning a kayak trip that involves flying to the destination, study up on regulations and if in doubt -- leave it out. Most campers are aware of the restrictions on camp stoves and...

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Mean Tide Levels for Puget Sound, Washington

Mean Tide Level data is sometimes needed to estimate the tide level desired to launch or land at beaches with tide flats. Unfortunately many pocket sized tide tables don't include this data. While the daily tide data in your tide table books are only good for the year, constants such...

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Waterfall falls and Velocity

How long does it take a kayaker to fall a given distance at a waterfall? Someone photographing a kayaker running a waterfall may want to know ahead of time how many seconds the event will last. If we ignore the air's frictional resistance force, the equation for calculating how far...

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