Paddling Gear

Whether it’s an afternoon relaxing on the lake or a whitewater river expedition, you’ll find the best paddling gear, essentials, and apparel right here for your next kayak, canoe, or packraft trip.

We’ve got reviews, ratings, and price comparisons on the boats, paddles, and accessories to outfit you safely, plus, apparel, PFDs, and waterproof storage to protect your valuable gear.

See our top paddling gear picks in any product category below. Or browse independent equipment reviews and ratings by real canoeists and kayakers to select appropriate, dependable, real world-tested gear for your next paddle.

Recent Paddling Product Reviews

Eddyline Sea Star

rated 4.5 of 5 stars Light, fast, long boat with ample storage and big-sea capabilities. I purchased this boat used 5-6 years ago because I needed something faster and lighter for a few competitive endeavors such as Sea to Summit (12 miles paddling upstream in the tidal Piscataqua River from its mouth at the Atlantic Ocean, 93 miles biking, and a 8.5 mile run/hike to the top of Mount Washington 6288ft above the starting line). This boat is very fast, but also much more versatile than I originally expected, with lots… Full review

Old Town Penobscot 16

rated 2 of 5 stars Good on flat lakes and easy to paddle, but will swamp easily due to the shallow rocker in large standing waves. We rented the canoe and were very happy until we hit some rapids with very large standing waves. The canoe quickly swamped and we were swimming. Friends in a Nova Craft had no problems.   Full review

Old Town Pack

rated 3 of 5 stars Very lightweight, stable, car-top boat perfect for solo paddling or fishing in calmer waters. Bought mine new ~1998, still using it for myself and two dogs.  Two best features are 1) lightweight—I (5'5" woman) can handle it alone, and 2) car top—I can easily load and strap it (2 straps, 1 rope to front of car) on car factory roof rack (well within weight limits) and head to lake—no truck, trailer, or special after-market roof rack required. It fits inside my one-car garage ceiling, easily… Full review

Old Town Pack

rated 5 of 5 stars I wouldn't give it up for anything. I bought one of the last ones you could find, at REI. I am so glad I did. You can still get lightweight solos, but you will have to pay big bucks for kevlar. I like being able to bang around the Royalex. I have canoe camped with full camping and fishing gear and the pack handles it easily. I love being able to load and carry the canoe with ease without hurting myself. This is one sweet little canoe. I paddle it with a kayak double paddle. I don't know when someone… Full review

Motionize SUPerior Paddle Sensor

rated 4 of 5 stars The SUPerior paddle sensor is a great tool for the novice or SUP racer to optimise paddle stroke. Used in conjunction with a Smartphone app it gives real time training information. I have been using the Motionize SUPerior paddle sensor along with their SUP smartphone app all summer and have found it to be really helpful in improving my paddle stroke and overall speed. Packaged in a small zippered case the SUPerior sensor comes with a charger plate and charging cable. Once the sensor is fully charged… Full review

GCI Outdoor SitBacker

rated 3.5 of 5 stars This canoe seat offered excellent back comfort during a five-day paddling wilderness adventure. Its light weight and thoughtful design made it easily portagable without having to take it in and out of the canoe. Recommended. This SitBacker canoe seat was a lifesaver on my five-night, six-day wilderness paddling adventure. I was with my grandsons and they were in the front and back of the canoe leaving me to occupy the center seat. It took me a couple days to realize that the portage shoulder cushions… Full review

Advanced Elements Rapid Up Sail

rated 4 of 5 stars When you are looking for that extra little push during a long day on the water the Advance Elements Rapid Up Sail provides. Having attached this to both a single and tandem kayak, the Rapid Up Sail can produce enjoyable speed with favorable winds. Living on the coast in SW FL, I am surrounded by water, so I spend a great deal of time paddling...both kayak and canoe. Over the years I have seen some pretty elaborate and expensive canoe/sail setups, even on kayaks...but that's not what I was looking… Full review