Living in Florida we have many options for kayaking, from fresh water springs to open ocean adventures. We recently rounded up our Top 10 Places to Kayak in Florida list. We've come to realize over the years our favorite runs involve landing at a sandy beach and spending some time frolicking in the sun, splashing in the water, lounging in our beach chairs and maybe enjoying a few adult beverages.
Each run we take, we seem to always be curating our gear, noting down what we wish we had brought or worn, so that next time our trip is that much more enjoyable. One important thing to do is to also take a look at what gear you are bringing and not using, all in an effort to travel light, but travel prepared for anything. We often kayak for hours to remote beaches and you have to be prepared for the worst in these situations. So I put together our current list of 10 essential gear items for day trip kayaking to a remote beach.
1. Multicolor Dry Bags
This is pretty obvious, everything should go in a dry bag - you don't need all the fancy expensive ones imo - check out:
Outdoor Products Ultimate Dry Sack, Three-Pack
We really love the multi-color pack, it makes it much easier to separate gear and to be able to identify what is where, rather than having all the same color.
2. Beach Umbrella with Integrated Sand Anchor
It gets freaking hot out there, and we love having an sun umbrella to sit under - our requirements being it is packable, lightweight and can be anchored easily. This RIO fits the bill and has been going strong for years.
Our recommendation: The RIO BEACH 6 1/2' Integrated Sand Anchor Umbrella
3. Lightweight Folding Chairs
Speaking of sitting, we used to never bring chairs, but that all changed once we we got a set of ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous Folding Camp Chairs
These are high quality chairs, coming in at only 6.8 pounds, and they fold up easily and are pretty small. The sit lower than traditional folding chairs, and they do have a mesh that sometimes gets sand on your back, but we love these guys. Super portable, and well made, one word of caution is there is a small clip that holds the seat, make sure the support bar for your seat is resting in the clip before you sit down, this will ensure many years of use out of this camping chair.
One of my favorite things about these chairs are how easy they are to pack back into the bags they come with, you can also fold them together a few times to knock off any sand before slipping them into the heavy duty bag with arm strap.
4. Eton Rugged Rukus The solar-powered, Bluetooth-ready, smartphone-charging speaker
Bluetooth speakers are like a dime a dozen, I think you can buy them at most gas stations nowadays. The Eton Rukus is different. I've had this thing for 5 years, have completely beat the crap out of it, and it still works awesome. It's really an amazing piece of electronics, it's solar powered and I only charge it with the sun. If its been a while since I've used it, I stick it out in the sun for a 10 minutes and then it's ready to rock. It's water resistant - I've left it out in the rain on multiple occasions with no issues. It's rugged! I've dropped it, covered it in sand, tossed it around - all in all it still works fine. There is two versions, one has better stats for a double the cost, I have the cheap one. Oh - I forgot to mention you can charge your devices with it!
5. Tilley Endurables Airflo Hat
This hat keeps your noggin cool, with UPF 50+ sun protection rating, a secret pocket, guaranteed for life - what more do you want? These hats float! If your not sold on equipping your head with one of these bad boys yet, how about the fact that Canadian Mounties wear this brand, or that it is water repellent, or that it has wind proof straps, the list goes on and on why this is the best hat for kayaking for men and women - get one now, seriously.
6. Hydro Flasks
Another lifetime guaranteed product that we swear by, these keep your beverages cool in direct sunlight for hours, we've gone kayaking all day and had ice still unmelted in ours. The perfect water or adult beverage carrier. Comes in a bunch of sizes and colors - Check Out their product offering.
7. Pilot Knife with Multi Functions
You need a knife when kayaking, our favorite is this little Neko by NRS - requirements for me is that a one-handed deployment and attaches to PFD lash tab, if a situation occurs I want to access the knife quick, and having it attached to me ensures that. I've read about horror stories of kayakers getting caught up in abandon fishing lines. Also note, some yakkers like blunt headed knifes for safety - check out the NRS co-pilot or read a review on the NRS Gerber Shorty - in my opinion these are the best knives for kayaking, but to be honest I've only used it to open beers and one time I used the screw slot for screwing a bolt on my friends boat 🙂
8. Redneck Convent Kayak Paddle Leash
Having a leash on your paddle is really nice, especially if you've ever lost a $250 paddle like me. For the longest time I've never used one, and to be honest until I found this brand, Redneck Convent, I would never buy one. They kind of look like hair tie scrunches to me, lol, but not the Redneck Convent Kayak Paddle Leash It's all you need, sometimes I just toss my paddle in the water to take picture or fish, and this leash allows me to do that without looking like some funky scrunchy rope, not cool.
There is a ton of other little items in our day trip packs, such as:
- A Whistle or Air horn - sometimes you need to get people's attention, like when coming through a bridge, rowing past people casting/fishing, or other watercraft.
- Bug Repellent
- Duct/Gorilla Tape
- Marine Cooler Bag
- First Aid Kit, including meds for common things (heartburn, headache, allergies)
- Hand Sanitizer
- Headlamps - because of course we like to watch the sunset!
- Life Jackets - Obviously.
- Trash bags
- Wet Wipes
We love kayaking to remote beaches and hanging out, we hope this list helps your next trip that much better, what items do you bring out when kayaking to a beach?
Gear up and Happy Kayaking!