Make the best of your kayaking trip by being aware of safety hazards and knowing how to deal with them. Important things to consider include:
- Weather and water conditions including tides and currents.
- Obstacles in the river such as logs, rocks, and other various objects.
- Power boats.
- Check the water and wind conditions before you set out.
- Personal floatation devices are a necessity in the event of someone falling out of the kayak or the kayak tipping. Lifejackets will keep you above the water so it’s easy to locate you and you can find a safe way out of the river and onto dry land.
- Appropriate clothing is important to protect you from the freezing water, as it is highly likely that you will get wet when kayaking. Even in the summer months, the water is quite cold and protective clothing is still necessary.
- Avoid motor boats.
- Try to always kayak with a companion. This will help make sure there is always someone around should one of you get into an accident.
- Prepare for whitewater, waterfalls, sharp rocks, or any other hazard that might come along.
- Don’t overestimate your skills or pick a trail that seems too challenging. This is how most accidents happen. Stick to what you know and pick a trail around your skill level.
- Classes are also recommended before kayaking to make sure you know what to do in cases of emergency and how to kayak properly. Information on where to find classes and instructors can be found at www.americancanoe.org.
Laws, equipment requirements, and other safety information
Detailed safety information