Do you ever worry what would happen if you were to capsize your kayak? It happens sometimes, but fortunately getting back in your kayak isn’t hard if you have a few simple self rescue skills. You can get back in your kayak by yourself using a paddle float, or you can get help from a friend to do an assisted rescue.
On the Philip Edward Island trip over the Canada Day Weekend, I will be taking a day out to practice my kayaking skills. If you would like to join me, feel free to come out and practice your rescue skills, or any other skill you would like to work on. I would be happy to help you figure out any skills you would like to learn. [Disclaimer: I am not an instructor or guide, just a fellow paddler who enjoys learning new skills]
If you would like to learn how to do a self or assisted rescue, I suggest reviewing the following materials prior to the trip. Also, I suggest purchasing a paddle float if you don’t already have one (Killarney Outfitters may have some for sale, but I suggest getting one from MEC or your favourite paddling shop [be aware that some Marine stores sell substandard paddle floats, so Caveat Emptor]). If you feel you may not have the upper body strength to pull yourself back up into the boat, you might also consider acquiring a “rescue stirrup” - a piece of looped webbing that allows you to use your legs to get back into the kayak.
Paddle Float Self Rescue:
The water temperature for northern Georgian Bay is currently 14 degrees in the middle of the bay, no doubt warmer closer to shore, so hopefully by the weekend the waters close to shore will be cool but comfortable.
What to bring:
- kayak with skirt
- paddle float
- rescue stirrup (optional)
- wet/drysuit (if you have one)
- nose plug (optional)
- ear plugs (if you don’t like water in your ears)