Short Day Paddles
Lightweight Long-Sleeve Shirt: Fair skin here, so I burn quickly and I run hot. These keep me cooler since my sweat has something to absorb onto instead of just evaporating. Yet, drys fast, acts as an AC unit, and is a physical barrier from the sun. I rarely paddle in a short-sleeve shirt, but if I do it tends to be later at night. All of my shirts are 100% polyester, hemp, or a blend, with little to no cotton. I love my Nike Dry Fit Pro or Patagonia base-layer, which I wear doing all the activities I partake in. Lightweight and fast drying is key!
Long Pants or Board Shorts: Just like the long-sleeve shirt, pants can do the same. Easier to have physical barrier from the sun vs putting sunscreen on. Also, helps with pesky bugs like mosquitoes. I have been digging my Outdoor Research pants made of lightweight nylon and spandex. Dry crazy fast and stretch! I also like the Coalatree Trailhead adventure pants for the same reasons. Later at night or on super hot days, you can catch me in board-shorts. I prefer pants for the sun protection. Ladies: lightweight hiking pants, yoga, or workout pants all work great. Swimsuits, shorts, and a top works too. Otherwise, whatever you feel comfortable wearing. I know some of ya love the sun. Anything made with polyester, nylon, blends, and other fast drying materials is still key.
Water Shoes/Footwear: Flip flops, bare feet, or shoes from Astral Footwear, I love my Hiyaks. Once on the board you can be barefoot. You might have to walk across asphalt, rocks, sand, and other types of rough terrain to access the water we are going to paddle. So keep that in mind.
Sunscreen, Hat, Sunglasses, and Bug Spray: Take care of your beautiful skin and eyes. Plus, protect yourself from those persistent bugs. Please use biodegradable and eco- friendly sunscreen and bug spray from companies like Badger Balm. Their clear Zinc Sunscreen is awesome!
Rain Jacket: I always have one with me. Great for colder windy days too, since they block the wind. You can get pretty warm with one on too. I tend to only use mine in heaver rain, which it fits over my PFD.
Towel: Travel towels that are microfiber fabric are fantastic! Typically made of polyester. I wrap my camera in one and tend to have a larger one that comes in handy all the time. Heck I used one as a blanket before. Of course, great to wipe your board down after a paddle so your vehicle does not get as wet.
Headlamp! A must on all paddles for me. There's been so many times paddling after work, I think I will be back before dark. No really ever the case, since I love to catch the sunset. So I am paddling back with limited light. Just smart to have one and helps boats see you.
Safety Gear: Whistle and knife, not needed, but I always have one on me. If paddling with other, I will have a throw rope and/or NRS straps. Just in case I have to tow someone or other situations comes up.
PFD (Life Jacket): I rock the Green Jacket from Astral Designs.
Dry Bag: Place to put your phone, keys, wallet, water bottle, snack, and any other layers you might want with you. I like to use a 20L Dry Bag for short paddles. 35L Dry Bag if I have my camera, hammock, and/or other layers with me.