Sea Kayaking 101: What to Wear

Make sure your apparel is ship shape for your next sea kayaking expedition with help from these Pro Tips.

Sea kayaking can be a great activity to get yourself out of your comfort zone and into new environments on the water. The nature of sea kayaking puts different stressors on your apparel, so it can be very beneficial to be dressed for success when out on the water.

Pacific Northwest Adventure Guide Kieron Weidner suggests that kayakers should wear a few key items when out at sea. Starting from the top down, make sure you have a hat to shield your face from the sun, as well as polarized sunglasses to help protect against glare off of the water. You may want to consider attaching your sunglasses to a cord or retainer to help keep your sunglasses from falling off into the water, too.

A jacket is another great piece of apparel for sea kayaking, “Preferably something that’s waterproof and lightweight, layered with an SPF-rated shirt,” Weidner says.

Quick-drying shorts and shoes are essential to complete your sea kayaking ensemble. As always, you can add layers depending on comfort, but make sure that your gear doesn’t hinder your performance. Be sure to always wear your life jacket as well. Safety should always be a top priority when on the water.

You can also carry extra apparel and small items like sunscreen, your cellphone and a water bottle in a dry bag. Discover more of Weidner’s tips on what to bring on your next sea kayaking adventure.

When you’re out on the water, the last thing you want is to be improperly dressed and limit your sea kayaking experience. Take the time before launch to check the weather conditions for the day and get your apparel ready.

“Proper planning can make for an enjoyable and safe adventure, so take the time and do it right,” says Weidner.