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Checklist for a paddling outing

paddling-200x148You’re frantic. Panicked even. In exactly one hour, your troop is heading out the door on a paddling outing — and you’re struggling to pack. What clothes do you need to bring? How about extra gear?

No worries.

Just take a deep breath and use this handy checklist. In addition to your basic outdoor gear, you’ll also need:

  • PFD (a.k.a. life jacket)
  • Paddle
  • Lightweight rain gear
  • Sunglasses with strap
  • Sunscreen, nonoily cream
  • Water bottle with clip
  • Swim trunks
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • Towel
  • Baby powder or Gold Bond powder (to reduce chafing)
  • Insect repellent, DEET based
  • Flip flops (or other appropriate footwear)
  • Fishing license


From Paul Beal, general manager, Florida Sea Base, Islamorada, Fla.

  • Dry bag. “Whether you’re in a kayak or a canoe or one of our war canoes, they get water in them. And the last thing you want is for all your gear to get wet. So you need a good dry bag that’s big enough to hold all your stuff.”
  • Dry box. “They are indestructible, float and don’t leak. Every time I get on a boat, I bring mine to carry my wallet, digital camera and anything that I don’t want to get wet.”
  • Fishing hat. “Wear a hat with a long brim and apron in the back or a big straw hat—just something to protect your face, head and neck from the sun.”
  • Polarized sunglasses. “Not the 10-dollar drugstore sunglasses. Polarized glasses cut the glare off the water so you can see the bottom better, and they protect your eyes from the harmful UVA and UVB rays.”


  • Lightweight long-sleeve shirt and long pants. “Something people don’t think of when they’re going some place like the tropics is to bring long pants and a long-sleeve shirt. They give you sun protection plus help keep away insects.”
  • Dive booties. “When you get out of the boat and wade onto shore, dive booties protect your feet from whatever is on the bottom and give you some traction.”

10 Comments on Checklist for a paddling outing

  1. bruh

  2. Cute list; fishing license but no pole or tackle? Baby powder? Just swim! (How long are going after all) Always bring some TP, there’s always a scout that needs it when exercising. Have an energy snack too. Again, cute.

    • Maybe you should read the beginning where he advises “In addition to your basic outdoor gear, you’ll also need:”

  3. Chacos or Tevas drain better than Keens and they don’t trap rocks as much. Stay away from velcro as it will become fouled with sand. Chacos have well designed footbeds and use a strap and buckle design and offer sticky rubber if you need it. I’ve worn out 4 pairs of Chacos in 12 years, but that’s what I wear the most – rain, sleet, and snow.

  4. canadain scout // July 12, 2010 at 6:35 pm // Reply

    im going white water rafting is it any diffrent? plz help

  5. canadain scout // July 12, 2010 at 6:25 pm // Reply


  6. Strap the sunglasses to your head, because those glasses won’t be useful at the bottom of a river

  7. A great shoe to wear are Keens. They have closed toes and keep your feet from being cut.

  8. when canoeing its good to wear closed toed shoes not flip flops because when you get out and have to carry or portage canoes its real easy to hurt your feet on rocks and maybe even glass when your at a public park.

  9. i went canoeing. this list was very useful. i know i sound like girl when i say the boots kept my feet pearly clean, but it is true.l

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