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Keep your gear dry when canoeing

Canoe tripNothing’s worse than a soaked sleeping bag or a wet change of clothes after a day in the canoe. Here are some quick tips to keep all your stuff dry.

Dry Bags, Float Bags And Dry Pouches

A waterproof bag with buckles at the top works great for holding things that must stay dry such as your wallet or food. Don’t put too much in there. Leave enough room to fold the opening over at least three times before buckling shut. The buckles keep the folds pressed together and keep water out. Dry bags come in sizes from one quart to 25 by 43 inches. Find them at most outdoor retailers.

4086-01-015.jpgResealable Bags

These work in the kitchen, and they can work on a canoe trip. They come in all sizes. Sandwich-size bags store toilet paper or socks. Two-gallon bags hold jeans or sneakers. Some stores even carry sizes up to 12 and 20 gallons. Don’t overfill. Seal carefully.

5-gallon-bucket.jpg Five-gallon buckets

If you don’t have to lug your gear far, these can be useful. A sleeping bag fits in one perfectly. Take two and put spare clothes in the other. Seal the lid to the bucket with duct tape. Buckets can also double as a place to sit around the campsite.

td-5-galbucket2.jpg Protect It Even More

Combine waterproofing for things you absolutely must keep dry. Put small items in resealable bags and stuff all of those in a larger one. Then, put everything in a bucket or dry bag. If the outer layer leaks, your gear is still protected.

12 Comments on Keep your gear dry when canoeing

  1. Our unit uses 2.5 gallon zip-locks; one for each outfit. Not only do they stay dry but it also keeps the dirty clothes away from the clean clothes. We also place all bagged clothes and gear in a large plastic bag liner to double protect. Put all this in an Army ruck sack and you’re set for any water or wilderness outing. Very inexspencive too.

  2. philmont 09 75 // June 16, 2008 at 9:19 pm // Reply

    Zip Lock sells great big bag keeps stuff really dry you can look for it in all stores with camping stuff its endorsed by old town but good info tons of help keep going boys life I hope you help others as much as you help

  3. thanka a lot it will help me on my trip to floodwood (50 mile canoe trip) in the summer.

  4. Old Scout 1960 era // August 8, 2007 at 12:00 am // Reply

    A good cheap source for 3 1/2 – 5 Gallon buckets are school cafaterias, pizza parlours, fast food resteraunts and bakeries. They may smell of dill pickels or need to be washed out, but they are free.

    Cookie dough comes in 2 or 3 Gallon squaire buckets, they would make great 16-25 plant herb gardens for Christmas gifts. Parsley, Sage, Oregano, Thyme, Rosemary, Mint, Cives, Chilantro, you get the general idea.

    Take a bucket, saw off the bottom, add a $10 toilet bucket lid and position the bucket over a cat hole and you have a fancy short term camp latrine.

  5. same for kayaking

  6. wetfeetsmell // May 19, 2007 at 3:57 pm // Reply

    I think that it is a good idea to talk about how to keep your things dry. My mom hates the smell of wet socks.

  7. This is very helpful!!

  8. 93 fanatic!! // May 2, 2007 at 10:41 pm // Reply

    Hey, man, I NOW can’t wait until I go on a canoeing trip!!!

    (Ty for the tips keep it up!)

  9. theQuartermaster // May 2, 2007 at 4:29 pm // Reply

    Thanks for the tips it will really help to keep the gear dry on my first canoe trip.

    GREAT WEBSITE!! Keep it up BOYS LIFE!!!

  10. hfyfghdchtfgnd4567 // May 1, 2007 at 8:25 pm // Reply


  11. wpea154me22 // May 1, 2007 at 3:55 pm // Reply

    I love Boys’ Life it’s vary cool. Please sand me some more. And I leand that u shud stey with your pake. You shud make one about the lowo oh the pake becuease some peple don’t foloy the pake!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. 490 trooper // April 28, 2007 at 5:32 pm // Reply

    it’s very helpful

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