I can’t say I’m getting old, I’ll be 44 in a few weeks. That’s not exactly up there.  But I am super busy with starting a SUP instructor certification organization, running my paddling business and maintaining my barely alive photography biz.

Being overwhelmed means I’m forgetting things.  I’ve been missing a few appointments and meetings here and there, and even worse forgetting my paddling gear in the parking lot or bringing the wrong gear to the beach. After a few months of this, I’ve come up with a semi fool proof system of reducing my paddle preparation blunders.  Here’s some tips..

I both kayak and SUP.  I occasionally bring a kayak paddle with my SUP or forget my spray skirt when I go kayaking.

Garage / House Storage:
– Hang my sprayskirt off my kayak bow in the garage to dry.  It’s always there when I need it.
– Always keep a SUP fin and a leash in my plastic travel bucket.
– Have two paddle buckets, one for each type of paddling. Downside is that I may grab the wrong one.
– Store my kayak paddle in the cockpit of my kayak.
– Lay my SUP paddle on top of my SUP.
– If I know what I’m taking the night before, set everything on or in each craft.

Car Storage:
– Leave essential yet commonly forgotten items in the car. For me – hood, booties, gloves.
– Store one or both paddles in the car especially if they break down to 2 or 3 pieces.
– Leave a checklist in the car to remind myself of my list of gear.

Prevention of Loss of Gear in Public Places:
– Wrap colorful electrical tape around the shaft of your paddles.
– Mark all items with your contract info.  I’ve recovered gear twice this way.
– Find a way of keeping all gear attached to eachother when leaving beach.
– Before you pull out of the lot, do a gear check under your car, etc.
– Worse case, keep a list of items in the car to remind yourself what to bring home.

Tip: Get a automatic self bailing pump for your kayak if you forget my your spray skirt often. I surfed a bunch of waves without one and had to go in every ten or so minutes to dump the water out of the cockpit.  Not fun.  Better yet, get an open deck kayak or surfski.

Salmon Bay Paddle SUP Tips

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