curran

Kayak Safety

31 posts in this topic

3 mins ago, tj7501 said:

All good advice. You can also stick some pool noodles, foam or an inflatable cushion in the bow for added safety. I used a 12' Pungo SIK for years - great kayak, could carry it on one shoulder. But not all SIKs are seaworthy.

There are also air bags specifically designed for kayaks.

 

IMG_8535-scaled.jpg

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Safety comes down to YOU.

 

For equipment, I carry the following:

 

PFD – wear it ALWAYS – the stuff below is on the PFD

Radio – one that floats and is waterproof

Whistle

Compass

Strobe

Knife

 

On the Yak

Chart plotter/GPS/FF

Paddle w/leash

Small first aid kit (with bolt cutters for hooks)

Flag w/light

Reflective tape on yak

Line for towing or getting towed

Recovery strap (for help getting back into a swamped yak)

Small hand pump

 

Now the biggest piece of equipment you should use is your HEAD!

   Understand what you are comfortable with.  Trust your instincts, they are almost always correct.  If you get to the launch and you feel uneasy, don’t launch.   No one can tell you if it is safe.  Way too many factors.  Things such as weather, tide, current, surf, night vs day, do you have a buddy to go with, have you launched in that spot before, what yak do you have, what are you wearing ( dry suit, bathing suit, or something in between), what's your level of experience for that particular set of conditions….   The list goes on, and everyone is a factor that contributes to the decision that only you can make.

 

The best advice I can give you is this:  The goal is to live to fish another day.  Have fun and be smart.

Edited by Jeff270

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40 mins ago, Jeff270 said:

Safety comes down to YOU.

 

 

 

Now the biggest piece of equipment you should use is your HEAD!

 

 

The best advice I can give you is this:  The goal is to live to fish another day.  Have fun and be smart.

....all of this and pretty much everything Jeff nailed in his list.

Learn to follow your inner instincts .....

Obviously you don't want to wuss out and miss a great adventure but know when to say....it just ain't right.

 

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On 9/14/2021 at 1:03 PM, charliestriper said:

Also consider swamping yourself on purpose in shallow water in a lake or protected bay and have practice pumping water out and climbing back into the kayak.

This!  You need to practice this in a safe place before you head out.  You don't want to have to figure this out for the first time out in the ocean.  As Riddler says, many people have fished out of a sit-in.  It adds a layer of complexity I'm not personally interested in dealing with.  Trying to use a hand bilge pump while floating next to a swamp kayak in the ocean before I can think about getting back in isn't on my bucket list.

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This is my first season salt water kayaking, and I have a 10.5ft sit on top pedal drive kayak. I was a little nervous my first few trips but i've gained some confidence. I still don't venture too far out, only go on days with wind below 10mph and wave less than 5ft. I've only fished protected areas but I venture outside the jetties and when it gets a little too rough out for me it's nice having the option to head back to the calmer waters.

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16 hours ago, Jeff270 said:

Safety comes down to YOU.

 

For equipment, I carry the following:

 

PFD – wear it ALWAYS – the stuff below is on the PFD

Radio – one that floats and is waterproof

Whistle

Compass

Strobe

Knife

 

On the Yak

Chart plotter/GPS/FF

Paddle w/leash

Small first aid kit (with bolt cutters for hooks)

Flag w/light

Reflective tape on yak

Line for towing or getting towed

Recovery strap (for help getting back into a swamped yak)

Small hand pump

 

Now the biggest piece of equipment you should use is your HEAD!

   Understand what you are comfortable with.  Trust your instincts, they are almost always correct.  If you get to the launch and you feel uneasy, don’t launch.   No one can tell you if it is safe.  Way too many factors.  Things such as weather, tide, current, surf, night vs day, do you have a buddy to go with, have you launched in that spot before, what yak do you have, what are you wearing ( dry suit, bathing suit, or something in between), what's your level of experience for that particular set of conditions….   The list goes on, and everyone is a factor that contributes to the decision that only you can make.

 

The best advice I can give you is this:  The goal is to live to fish another day.  Have fun and be smart.

this is great info!

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A5CA3AEF-60E7-4A2E-9BFF-189C61530348.jpeg.a5ffeda0bb281454e0fff7ec1f0cdbe9.jpegThat’s not a freshwater kayak, For the experienced kayaker, it’s as seaworthy as any other. 
  It’s basic design and short length are its biggest limiting factors. If it’s bumpy out there, leave it home! That design worked for Nanook the Eskimo thousands of years ago. Sans internal bulkheads, that boat will semi sink if filled with water. A sponge for rain/spray/paddle drip is handy to have.

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Get a PLB for around $200 for extra piece of mind. If shyt goes bad i do not want to rely on a  VHF or cellphone to save my life if self rescue is not an option.

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On 9/13/2021 at 8:48 PM, curran said:

Hello all,

 

I was wondering how safe it would be to take a freshwater sit-in kayak out into the ocean. 

 

I have a kayak that looks like this: Best fishing kayak under £400 » Human Powered Vehicles

 

I plan on wearing a life jacket, and not going more than half a mile offshore. 

 

So, has anyone done something like this? If so any tips? How would I launch, and what should I wear

I want to get out onto the ocean and do some jigging for mackerel 

 

Alternatively, If I am a fool, please don't hesitate to let me know. I want to be safe, but have no clue how safe or not this is. 

That setup may be safe for some and 0% safe for others based on ability.  Gear questions can be answered here but ability questions can not.  Strength, technique, and thinking under duress make up ability.  IMO, honest answers to those questions can only come from practicing self-rescue. 

 

My advice: Paddle for a few hrs then: swamp the kayak, flip it, separate yourself and swim back, pump it out and get back in....wouldn't hurt to do everything twice in a row either.  This will provide answers & highlight shortcomings in ability.           

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Sit inside kayaks have a bigger learning curve then sit on top kayaks. If you can self rescue in water over  your head that is half the battle. A paddle float and a pump would come in handy.

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I apologize if I missed it but a sit in kayak should have a skirt to keep waves from coming in. It should fit well and be of good quality- I never used one in flat water but believe they are standard equipment for off shore or white water. Other than that I agree with all the safety gear and practices mentioned.

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Learn to know how to forecast the conditions you're going to face.

Accept the fact that sometimes it's gonna sux and live to fish another day.

Learn how to fish in the lee if it's available.

Learn by experience if certain structure will give you protection.  

Learn...it's fun.  

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1 hour ago, tristate said:

I apologize if I missed it but a sit in kayak should have a skirt to keep waves from coming in. It should fit well and be of good quality- I never used one in flat water but believe they are standard equipment for off shore or white water. Other than that I agree with all the safety gear and practices mentioned.

Very few, if any, guys fishing from a SIK wear a skirt. Most are not fishing from the 'Greenland' or touring style boat that really needs one because of low gunwales. Most often they're in giant cockpits like pictured above that would be hard to skirt. I paddled skirted whitewater boats for decades but decided SOT were safer for fishing, especially if I was alone.

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