Bringing the proper clothing and equipment is essential for a safe and enjoyable Sea Kayaking Adventure. As beautiful as Maine typically is in the summertime, our weather can change quickly – that is why you should plan for wet and cool weather despite the forecast. Remember that it is much easier to shed clothing than to put on clothing you don’t have.
The following is a quick list of essential clothing and gear you should bring on any trip with Maine Sport Outfitters, as well as some helpful tips on dressing and packing:
Warmth, comfort and protection are essential. Neoprene booties, amphibious shoes or rugged sport sandals with a durable, stiff sole work best. The more formed-fit shoe, the more comfortable your fit in a kayak.
Worn by itself on warm days or underneath a wetsuit on cool days, this layer should be made of nylon or some other quick-dry synthetic fiber.
Filled Water Bottle or Hydration Pack
Remaining properly hydrated during your trip is absolutely essential for your safety & enjoyment. A quart-sized water bottle or hydration pack works great.
Fleece or Pile Sweater
Worn as a second layer for added warmth and insulation, this layer should be amde of a quick-dry synthetic such as fleece or pile. No Cotton!
Hat for Shade and/or Warmth
Nearly 75% of your body heat escapes through your head. Therefore, a nice warm cap made of fleece or wool works great for cold days and a brimmed hat (w/leash) is a good idea for sunny days.
Sunglasses with Leash
Good quality sunglasses with UV protection are essential for protecting your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays. Leashes keep the glasses on you and out of the water.
Protection from the sun is a must. Choose a waterproof sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15.
This outer layer protects you from the elements and is commonly made of coated nylon or Gore-Tex. Good wrist and neck closures are essential for keeping the rain and splash out. Make sure it has an attached hood for extra protection.
How to Dress
Layer your clothing! By adjusting layers in response to activity level, air and body temperature, you will stay comfortable throughout your trip. Choose fabrics that dry quickly, insulate if wet and wick moisture away from the skin such as polypropylene, polyester, neoprene or wool. On particularly cool days, Maine Sport Outfitters will provide neoprene Farmer John wetsuits to all participants at no additional cost. Wetsuits are standard equipment on all instructional programs.
How to Pack
Pack light and in several small parcels. Sea kayak gear is stored in the bow and stern compartments, accessed by small deck hatches. Dividing your gear into several small parcels rather than one large one makes it much easier to pack and evenly distribute the weight throughout the kayak.
For clothing and personal items, use storate bags that are waterproof and measure no more than 9″ in width by 16″ in length. Dry bags, 10-20 auarts in size, or stuff sacks lined with heavyweight plastic trash bags make excellent storage bags. Keep in mind that you will also be carrying a share of the groups equipment, so don’t over-pack your own gear.
Try to pack all of your clothes into one 20-quart dry bag, your sleepng bag into another 20-quart dry bag and any personal items and toiletries into a 10-quart dry bag (3 bag maximum). Your sleeping pad does not need to be stored in a dry bag and is considered separate of the 3 bag maximum. By following these guidelines you should be well prepared.
Any required prescription medications and their uses must be noted on our Medical Release/Waver of Liability Form. Bring double the amount needed with directions and doses written on an unbreakable, waterproof container.
Cash and Valuables
You will not need much, if any money during your trip. We suggest you bring $30 – $100 to cover incidental travel expenses during your trip and for any last minute personal equipment you may wish to purchase. Do not bring larger amounts of cash, jewelry or other valuables on your trip.