Thursday, February 23, 2012

Spring Kayaking is Coming!

In preparation for my big move (around the corner) I mounted my Thule rack back to my car.  It is much easier to move .while it is on a vehicle than in one.  I was going to take it off right after the move, but...the River looks so inviting.  My kayak is calling - it wants to play.

Of course, because this has been one of the warmest winters on record, I could have kayaked all year around this year.  That said, for those of you that don't know - COLD WATER WILL KILL YOU!  The water doesn't even have to be that cold, to get a great shock.  I'll be wearing neoprene and my dry gear until June, just in case.

I really don't want the Coast Guard to fish my body out of Lake Ontario.  Come to think of it, I don't want them to fish anyone's bodies out this year (and no, I'm not referring that we just leave them there).  I'm sure the CG would appreciate not doing body retrievals this year.

So what can you do?

First of all - WEAR A LIFE JACKET!!!!!!!
Yes, you dumbass, the one that swam the 400 fly in High School - that was 30 years ago.  I'm a lifeguard and I always wear my PFD - you should too.
Second, file a float plan:
Someone back home should know where you are going and when you expect to return.
Third, Carry safety equipment:
Extra clothing, water, food, headlamp, map, compass, whistle, flares, first aid kit, throw rope, bailing sponge, sunscreen,  rain gear.  If you are going into a wilderness environment, you should carry the 10 Essentials.
Fourth, Dress for the season,
Non-cotton clothing that retains its thermal properties while wet, a wide brimmed hat, kayaking gloves, neoprene boots, polarized glasses for glare. 

So start getting your kayak and paddles ready, as it almost time to put away the snowshoes and get out on the water again.

Crap, that reminds me - I need new neoprene kayaking boots.  The tread on my Teva Avator boots finally gave out. I have boots for warm water, but nothing to protect me from the cold too.  Any suggestions? 

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