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

Bending Branches Sunrise Glass

rated 5 of 5 stars This paddle has proven to be durable, efficient, and reliable over two full seasons of paddling 100+ days per year. It is a reasonably priced recreational paddle, with options for feathering. I would definitely recommend it for paddlers of canoes and kayaks, who are looking for a good basic paddle with positive performance and durability. My Bending Branches Sunrise Glass kayak paddle will soon be put away for the winter, but I have no plans or need to replace it for next year's paddling. In my… Full review

Elie Sound 100 XE

rated 5 of 5 stars Terrific overall kayak. Purchased new in April 2014 from REI. Wanted to find a good kayak for recreational use that wouldn't break the bank. Settled on two Elie Sound 100XE's at around $600 piece.   Having used three years now, I feel I can give some insight.   Majority of use has been on calm waters—lakes, creeks, and streams. I imagine a high end one can really move, but I have no issues moving quickly in this. Decent balance in width. Creature Comforts—The seat is very comfortable, allows… Full review

Sea to Summit eVent Compression Dry Sack

rated 4 of 5 stars Waterproof compression sack. Perfect for compressing sleeping bag and/or clothing for backpacking. Added bonus in that the bag is waterproof to protect your items. Have used for four years, big fan. Very easy to use. Full review

Ascend Sit On Top Kayak Cart

rated 5 of 5 stars There's an easier way to move your kayak, other than picking it up and carrying it. Why not try adding some wheels? I bought a set of Ascent Sit-On-Top Kayak Cart wheels at my local Bass Pro store. These are made specifically for sit-on-top kayaks that have scupper holes to allow drainage. The two posts on the cart simply slide into the scupper holes to instantly add wheels - no straps, no clamps! I've edited together a short video review. Please have a look. Full review

Aqua-Bound Sting Ray Carbon

rated 5 of 5 stars I recently purchased a 240cm long Aqua-Bound Sting Ray Carbon kayak paddle. I needed something longer and lighter than the paddles I already owned. I bought this specifically to use on a new, wider sit-on-top kayak. This two-piece paddle is very light and performs very well. I've put together a video review below. Please have a look. Thanks —Wayne Full review

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