Paddling Safety Gear

The best paddling safety gear, reviewed and curated by the Trailspace community. Stores' prices and availability are updated daily.

Recent Paddling Safety Device Reviews


rated 4 of 5 stars A great low price paddling PFD. It may not offer all the bells and whistles of higher end PFDs, but it is made of high quality materials with a form fitting design that provides comfort. I first purchased two of these PFD's when I got my first canoe at the age of 17. I chose them because my parents made it very clear that I would not be allowed to use this hand-me-down canoe unless I outfitted it with the proper safety equipment. Where I bought, what I bought, was up to me. These PFD's were inexpensive,… Full review

Kokatat Maximus Prime PFD

rated 4.5 of 5 stars This is a functional, durable, comfortable, and secure feeling PFD. I love this thing. Super comfortable, no sense that my movement is restricted, and excellent, reassuring fit. This is a type V rescue PFD and comes with the typical bells and whistles: tethering system, quick release, tow ring, and a covered sheath mount for your river knife. All things you hope you don't need to use, but that you must have for safety on whitewater and sea kayaking (don't forget the rescue class(es)!). Fit is easily… Full review

World Famous 50' Throw Rope Bag

rated 4 of 5 stars This throw bag with floating rope is a good, affordable version of an essential piece of paddling safety gear. After seven years of use, the bag is faded from the sun but the rope is still in good shape. Guides will prefer a high-performance brand for hard use, but recreational paddlers will find this model adequate. Every paddler needs a throw bag of floating rope. This throw bag from World Famous is affordable enough to put one in every kayak, or two in every canoe or double kayak. It meets safety… Full review

Kokatat Orbit Tour

rated 4.5 of 5 stars This PFD is excellent for freedom of arm movement. It fits well over a paddle jacket. The straps can be adjusted to fit tighter when a paddler is wearing only a bathing suit. After six years of use while kayaking salt water, it's still in good shape. The Orbit is a very well-constructed PFD. I have used mine for seven years but all the straps and seams are still strong. The bright orange fabric has faded a little in sunshine and shows a few grubby marks. It looks like what it is: a tough PFD that… Full review

NRS NFPA Rescue Throw Bag

rated 4.5 of 5 stars Will save a life if USED CORRECTLY. (Practice.) I used this bag in Swift Water Rescue training. Works well and is easy enough to throw. Keep in mind it has plenty of rope and requires a bit of strength to throw the full distance. I only managed to throw it the full 75 feet two or three times in a day practicing with it. It's easy to coil, but it's still 75 feet of rope. Use a partner to help speed things up when coiling the rope. I really liked that the victim's end of the rope has a flotation device… Full review

ONYX MoveVent Torsion Vest

rated 5 of 5 stars Feature-rich, value-priced PFD, perfect for kayaking. I found this brand PFD at a well-known general sports chain store after an exhaustive search for a comfortable life vest for recreational kayaking that fit my restrictive budget and my 50s-plus female torso. I had tried out several other brand vests that I had bought then returned due to deciding I did not like the fit. I tried on the ONYX MoveMent Torsion vest in the local store, really liked the fit and the price, but did not buy it right… Full review

Astral Ronny

rated 4.5 of 5 stars This is an extremely light and very comfortable PFD. I wear my PFD at all times, and I have found this to be comfortable in heat, easy to wear over a paddle jacket, nicely adjustable, and so far it seems quite durable. I had wanted to get a new PFD, one that is lightweight, cool in the summer, and which has lots of pockets! I am always carrying "stuff" and find it hard to access pants pockets when seated in a canoe. When I won my choice of Astral PFD, I selected the Ronny (men's), and am very pleased… Full review

Astral V-Eight

rated 5 of 5 stars Very comfortable and does the job... This is just a little info from our experience that you may not see in reviews of places that sell the Astral PFDs. Being new to kayaking and wanting quality PFDs for mostly summer paddling I liked the description and reviews about the Astral V-Eight. My wife and I tried them on at our local EMS store and found them very comfortable and well made. We bought them and like them very much. I'm 5'5" 185 lbs and the V-Eight does a good job of floating me. They… Full review

Shred Ready Super Scrappy Helmet

rated 3.5 of 5 stars Nice helmet, wish it was a bit bigger. Nice helmet for the money. The only reason I gave it less than 5 stars is the fact that this helmet runs small for a one-size-fits-all helmet. I pulled all the extra padding out of it and it is still a tight fit. No way I will get a skull cap under it for cold weather.  Full review

user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Astral V-Eight Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
NRS Pro Compact Rescue Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
$60 - $99
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
NRS CVest Type III PFD Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Astral Ronny Life Jacket/PFD
$60 - $110
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Kokatat Orbit Tour Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
NRS NFPA Rescue Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Kokatat Maximus Prime PFD Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 4 of 5 (2)
Kokatat MsFit Tour Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
NRS Ninja PFD Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
NRS Sea Kayak Paddle Float Paddle Float
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
NRS Vapor PFD Life Jacket/PFD
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1)
Shred Ready Super Scrappy Helmet Helmet
user rating: 0.5 of 5 (1)
Princeton Tec Eco Flare Flare
$10 - $12
Stohlquist TREKKer Life Jacket/PFD
Extrasport Fury Life Jacket/PFD
NRS Z-Drag Kit Z-Drag Kit
$300 - $329
Astral Norge Life Jacket/PFD
Aire Bowline Bag Throw Bag/Rope
Stohlquist Re-Traxt 12' Tow Line
$60 - $79
NRS Zephyr Inflatable PFD Life Jacket/PFD
North Water Sea Tec Tow Line Tow Line
$119 - $125
Stohlquist Contour Life Jacket/PFD
$75 - $99
WRSI Trident Composite Helmet
Seals Tow Rope Belt Tow Line
NRS Siren PFD Life Jacket/PFD
Shred Ready Standard – Half Cut Helmet Helmet
Seattle Sports Splitshot Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
$22 - $29
Old Town Solitude Life Jacket/PFD
$110 - $119
MTI Fluid 2.0 Belt Pack Life Jacket/PFD
Stohlquist eSCAPE Life Jacket/PFD
$24 - $69
NRS Clearwater PFD Life Jacket/PFD
$100 - $104
WRSI Current Helmet
NRS Guardian Waist Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
Sterling Rope 3/8 in Ultraline Throw Bag/Rope
MTI Headwater Life Jacket/PFD
North Water Regulation Throw Line Throw Bag/Rope
Old Town Riverstream Life Jacket/PFD
Sterling Rope GrabLine 3/8 Throw Bag/Rope
NRS Pro Rescue Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
$100 - $129
MTI Cascade Life Jacket/PFD
Stohlquist Rocker Life Jacket/PFD
$105 - $149
NRS Tow Tether Tow Line
Stohlquist PiSeas Lifejacket Life Jacket/PFD
Stearns Watersport Classic Life Vest Life Jacket/PFD
$19 - $24
Stohlquist Flo Life Jacket/PFD
Astral Layla Life Jacket/PFD
Stohlquist Add-A-Buoy Descent Lifejacket Bladder Life Jacket/PFD
$19 - $24
MTI Calcutta PFD Life Jacket/PFD
Kokatat Poseidon PFD Life Jacket/PFD
$119 - $175
NRS Rasta Rescue Throw Bag Throw Bag/Rope
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