Paddling Gear – Where to Go & What to Get

If you have a kayak or a canoe you may want to suit up with proper paddling gear.

Over the course of several years of buying different kayaking equipment and apparel I have narrowed down my shopping to a few favorite online stores as well as a few favorite apparel items and accessories that I don’t like to be without.

Where to Shop

Except for the odd time that I might find a really good sale in a kayak shop in my hometown, I almost exclusively shop for paddling gear online.

There are a couple of specific websites that I tend to gravitate to for my kayaking gear. They are:

  • – I really like NRS because they have it all. They are one of the original inflatable kayak manufacturers and offer everything from kayaks to every paddling apparel item and accessory you can think of.

    I have a fair amount of NRS gear and I know that if there is something I need to enhance my kayaking experience… they will usually have it. I have never once had any type of problem with anything I have purchased from their online store. They are a great place to shop for paddling gear and accessories.
  • – Who doesn’t shop at Amazon? After I have decided on something that I want to buy I will normally do a search for it at Amazon to see if they have it as well. Amazon is known for having some great deals and for carrying just about every item imaginable.

    If I can’t get a better deal at Amazon I will usually take my service to NRS but if I can I am always happy to save a buck or two. Just remember if you are shopping at Amazon to check out the shipping rates before you buy. I sometimes think the item is cheaper on Amazon until I factor in the shipping costs and realize it is going to end up costing me more. Still, they are always worth checking out.

There are lots of other paddling stores of course and you may have one or two that you favor. For myself I may stray every now and again but for the most part I have found these two websites to meet just about all of my kayaking gear and apparel needs.

To view a more complete list of where to buy paddling gear please see our Kayak Retailers page.

What to Buy

As far as what type of paddling gear you need is really up to you. Some items are not completely necessary but will certainly enhance your paddling experience and keep you comfortable and happy.

Below are some paddling gear and accessories that I personally use on a regular basis:

  • PFD
  • Water Shoes
  • Water Socks (for colder weather)
  • Paddling Gloves
  • HydroSkin Shirts
  • Hat
  • Bilge Pump
  • Boat Sponge
  • Paddle Bag
  • Waterproof Camera
  • Paddle Grips
  • Dry Bag
  • Helmet – only necessary for whitewater paddling

If you would like to view some of our own kayak gear reviews and information please see our Kayak Gear page.

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