girl kayaking on a river

Must-Have Kayak Accessories | What To Bring For Kayaking

Whether you’re a well-seasoned kayaker, or someone venturing out on their first trip, you need to know what to bring kayaking. Depending on the length and difficulty of your kayaking trip, you might need to bring different items along with you.

There are some kayaking essentials you simply can’t do without on any kayak trip. This is everything you need to know about what to bring when kayaking on any trip for the ultimate boat trip checklist

Kayak Essentials

If you are trying to find out about all the kayaking must-haves that should go along with you on every trip, then you’ve come to the right place. I’ve had the pleasure of kayaking since I was a little girl, and spending time on the water was one of my favorite and most peaceful pastimes. 

Add these items to your kayaking checklist for a safe and comfortable trip gliding over the water. 

Dry Bag

Kayak Cooler

Kayak Paddle Grips

Kayak Cap


Water Shoes

Marine Folding Anchor

Bungee Dock Lines

Kayak Windsail

Padded Kayak Seat

Adult swim vest

Dry bag 

Taking a dry bag along with you on your kayaking trip is an absolute must. That is if you want to ensure that you have dry clothes waiting for you at the end of your kayak trip. It’s also a great place to keep warm clothes in case the wind picks up when you’re on the water (which it often does). 

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Kayak cooler

A kayak cooler is essential if you plan on stopping for a boat snack during your trip. It not only keeps your food and beverages cool, but it also ensures that they are dry when you are ready to indulge. So whether you’re pulling up on a river bank for a sandwich, or simply tucking in while you drift with the stream, you’ll have a dry lunch to enjoy. 

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Kayak paddle grips

Kayak paddle grips are just about essential for those with soft hands as they prevent you from getting blisters. This is even more necessary if you happen to be embarking on one of your first long-distance paddles when you will be on the water for hours on end. If you invest in a pair of kayak paddle grips you won’t regret it, and your hands will be thanking you after a long hard day of paddling. 

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Cap or hat

If you plan on spending time on the water, then a kayaking cap or hat is absolutely essential. While it doesn’t have to be a themed cap, you do need to keep the sun off of your face as much as possible. Especially as the raise is intensified when they reflect off the water. For this reason, you will need to invest in some high SPF sunscreen to ensure the safety of your skin.  

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Water shoes

Wearing water shoes is not completely essential but will make your life a whole lot easier, and prevent you from ruining a nice pair of sneakers. Getting in and out of the kayak can be a messy business that often requires your feet to get wet. Having wet shoes also means you can stop along the way and climb out on the river bank with ease, not worrying about trying to keep a pair of shoes dry. 

And if you’re anything like me, stepping out of the kayak into mud or sludge is simply not an option. So having a reliable pair of water shoes is the ideal solution.  

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Marine folding anchor

Having a marine folding anchor isn’t something that will come in handy for every trip, but I’ve there have been plenty of times I’ve been grateful to have one with me. When your arms get tired and you need to take a break from paddling, but you don’t want to start drifting backward and losing your progress, then an anchor provides a great solution to the problem. 

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Bungee dock line

These bungee dock lines are exactly what you need if you want to attach yourself to a dock or pear (one that is low). It’s always handy to keep one or two of these on you as you could even attach yourself to a low-hanging tree along a quiet portion of the river in order to relax for a minute or two. 

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Kayak windsail 

This is another one of those non-essential but very handy items to have with you on a kayaking trip. But a kayak windsail can be very handy when traveling downwind. Simply pop up your windsail and let the wind take you while giving your arms a much-needed break. Of course, this may not be the way to go if you are kayaking for the exercise but a handy device to have with you either way.  

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Padded kayak seat 

This is a great option for someone who plans on going kayaking often, and one that can add a lot of comfort to your kayaking trips. This padded kayak seat ensures you won’t get that telltale back pain that comes with kayaking on a frequent basis. If you want to save yourself the strain of heading the chiro after every paddling trip, then this seat will serve you well on the water. 

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Adult swim vest 

We all like to think we won’t need one of these, but even if you are a strong swimmer, you never know what might happen. If you get swept down a river after falling out, you may have to swim for a long time before getting to land, and in those rare instances, you want to make sure you are safe. So an adult swim vest is an item you should be wearing on each and every one of your kayaking adventures. 

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Final Thoughts on What to Bring kayaking

Now that you know what needs to be added to your kayak checklist, you can get going on an adventure on the water. So whether you’re going river rafting in Colorado, or you’re going on a kayaking tour in Glacier National Park, you’ll be well prepared.  

Pack your bags with all the items mentioned above, and you’ll be well prepared for any kayaking trip. Grab your kayak and ore for the adventure of a lifetime!

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about me

Hi, I’m Tyla. I have been working toward gaining freedom from the constraints of the everyday grind since the very start of my career. Working remotely in digital marketing allowed me the freedom to start my own passion projects that center around the adventures I enjoy most.

Having lived near the ocean my entire life, I have an affinity toward spending time on the water, and I want to share that passion with all of you. I hope you enjoy reading about my boat trips as much as I enjoyed taking them!


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