There are many different types of clothing to choose if you are looking to get into kayaking in Alaska. The weather conditions and water temperature will all influence the choice of what to wear. Choose clothing that allows you to be flexible for ease of movement. It should be durable and offer you protection from cold, wet conditions while on your adventure.
Clothing Based on Your Adventure
Think about how you will use your kayak, such as touring, surfing, fishing, or gentle paddling to enjoy nature. Kayak surfing and whitewater kayaking will put you in contact with the water. Whereas, fishing and recreational kayaking mean the waters are going to be more calm, and the likelihood of direct contact with the water, like splashing and falling in, is a lot less likely.
A good rule when deciding what clothes to wear is to ensure you wear lots of layers. This means that if you get too hot you can always remove and store a layer for when the temperature drops again.
Make a point also to dress for the water temperature and not the air temperature. In the case of a sunny day, sun protection is important, even where there is cloud cover. Consider clothing material that is non-permeable and doesn’t absorb water. Quick-drying fabrics like polyester and nylon as well as waterproof clothing are the best option to ensure you don’t get wet and cold.
It is also very important to wear flexible clothing that ensures mobility when kayaking. It provides you with a high level of comfort when kayaking for longer periods. Avoid clothing that comes with zippers or metal parts, as they will rust when exposed to salt water. Let’s take a closer look at what you should wear, depending on the kayaking activity.
- Whitewater Kayaking: Whitewaters are a lot colder than the sea or lakes. They are also unstable, and the likelihood of falling into the water is a lot higher. We recommend wearing a good kayak drysuit. A wet suit can also do if the weather is warm. When you choose a dry suit, ensure that it is thick enough to ensure thermal protection. Whitewater kayaking involves physical, breathable layers that will allow your body to maintain a more stable heat.
- Recreational Kayaking: Recreational kayaking brings a different type of fun but with less chance of capsizing or falling into the water. You will have to put into consideration the suppleness and breathability of the materials, because this type of kayaking can be very physical, even while pleasant. A dry suit or semi-dry suit is an option worth considering depending on the temperature and how long the excursion will be or if you’re simply paddling for a peaceful journey on the water.
- Fishing: Fishing is much quieter and the waters will be calmer when compared to whitewater kayaking. The movement is also very limited; we recommend lots of layers to ensure you keep warm. A good hat and sunscreen are also going to be essential.
Other Safety Features
Wearing personal floatation devices is also highly recommended any time you’re on the water. This means that as you choose what to wear, bear in mind that it must allow for wearing a personal floatation device over it. Foregoing personal floatation devices increases your chance of injury and even drowning.
Above & Beyond Alaska: Your Water Adventure Experts
If you want to experience the true spirit of Alaska visit us at Above & Beyond Alaska in Juneau, AK! At Above & Beyond Alaska, we specialize in high quality, small group, active adventure tours for those wanting to experience the true spirit of Alaska.
We are a locally-owned small business that has been in operation since 2002. We have found the best of glaciers, bears, and whales in the Juneau Alaska area to share with you! Our team strives to go above and beyond in safety, service, and quality. From our high training standards to top-of-the-line gear and tours, you’ll be set with us for your once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
You can reach us at 907-364-2333 or text us at 907-209-5568. Write in by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit us at 2767 Sherwood Lane in Juneau, AK. Our office hours are Monday through Friday 9:00 am to 3:00 pm Alaska Standard Time.