Upfront Planning is Critical

The sea and lakes we paddle on are dynamic environments that can change quickly. If we are inadequately prepared, or don’t have the correct equipment with us, we can easily and quickly get ourselves, and others, into trouble. If the conditions we find ourselves in are beyond our skill level then our fun day out can, at best, turn into a stressful experience or worse.

We can avoid getting ourselves into this kind of trouble if we take the time to think through our intended day of fun on the water and prepare properly. Think of things such as:

  • Who we go with – going with a group of people with the right level of experience for the intended, and potential conditions.
  • Shore contacts – who will know if we don’t return as planned so they can notify a rescue if needed.
  • Paddle within your ability – get training and practice skills.
  • Environmental considerations – think about the weather, particularly the wind and how it may change through the day.
  • How can I get help – carry appropriate communications equipment and know how to use it.
  • Suitable Clothing – will I be warm enough if I end up in the water? Have I got suitable spare dry clothing for the end of the activity.
  • Safety Equipment – have I got the kit I could need to deal with a capsize or to alert others if I need help etc.
  • Personal ability – am I fit enough and skilled enough to undertake the intended activity with some left in reserve in case things start to go wrong.

Check out our safety videos and the information about our KayakSafe workshops for more information.