Winter Kayaking Tips and Resources

Winter kayaking near ice.

As the northern hemisphere shifts into winter and the water turns solid, many kayakers will hang up the paddling gear and store their kayaks until spring. It doesn’t need to be that way; winter kayaking can be enjoyable, albeit more dangerous than the other three seasons. PaddlingLight features multiple articles that give you great winter kayaking tips. As a trip down memory lane and to help you find the information you need about kayaking in the winter, the articles with tips are listed below.

Winter Kayaking Tips

“There is no bad weather, only the wrong gear.” -Minnesota Proverb The original winter kayaking tips article is about dressing for cold water and discusses some of the issues that you might run into, such as ice coating your kayak, shifting pack ice and more. Read it here: Winter Kayaking.

The Risks of Winter Kayaking

ACA Instructor Trainer Sam Crowley talks about the types of risks in winter kayak, and he give you winter kayaking tips that will help you see the dangers of paddling cold water and plan to minimize those risks. Read it here: The Risks of Winter Kayaking.

Wetsuit vs. Drysuit for Paddling

A discussion of the merits of a wetsuit vs. drysuit for paddling in the winter. With information about how your body responds to cold water immersion and tips about how to layer to stay warm when kayaking in winter. Also, rules of thumb for when a wetsuit works best and when a drysuit is the best option. Read it here: Wetsuit vs. Drysuit for Paddling.

The Best Winter Kayaking Gloves

When your hands stay warm, kayaking in winter is much more fun. This article singles out the warmest two gloves and one mitten for winter kayaking. It’s definitely worth investing in a pair of gloves and a pair of mittens, because both have their place depending on conditions. Read it here: The Best Winter Kayaking Gloves

Winter Kayaking Checklist

This checklist outlines gear needed to safely paddling in winter, plus it gives you good winter kayaking tips about skills and the dangers of cold water. All the equipment mentioned was tested in the dead of winter on Lake Superior. Read it here: Winter Kayaking Checklist.

Sea Ice Definitions

When you’re paddling on larger bodies of water during the winter, it’s nice to know the terms for the type of ice you’re kayaking around. Learn the meanings of pack ice, nilas, brash ice and more. Read it here: Sea Ice Definitions.

Important Note: Every year paddlers die when in winter, because they were unprepared. If you have a website or a blog, please, link back to one or more of these articles to help get the info out there. The more this info is passed around, the more kayakers will see it and, hopefully, we’ll make kayaking in winter safer for them. I appreciate any help you can give in getting this info out there. Thanks.


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