Lakes, rivers and coasts may be bordered by rock solid snow banks and swirling with icy gales, but that doesn’t mean paddlers have forgotten about their favorite activity. Choose one of these great gear items and you will not only make your favorite paddler’s Christmas, you’ll make their upcoming season way better than last.
1. A new canoe or kayak
Getting a brand new boat is an incredibly exciting moment for a paddler. It means you have a new means for exploring the waterways you love. Different features and design translate into a new experience paddling. Find out what kind of paddling the person you are shopping for likes best, as well as their level of experience and goals, and make their next season—and subsequent ones—super exciting. Find their next kayak here, and their next canoe here.
2. A BioLite CampStove
A paddler who spends time on multi-day trips will be tearing the wrapping paper off of this innovative stove. The BioLite CampStove generates usable electricity for charging LED lights, cell phones and any other personal devices. It burns wood and makes a smokeless campfire for preparing meals and boiling water. It’s small and can fit easily in a kayak hatch or canoe. See the BioLite CampStove here.
3. A safe and good quality PFD
A PFD is an essential piece of gear for any paddler. If a PFD has lost buoyancy and is experiencing foam degradation, it’s time for a new one. Look for one that has the appropriate level of buoyancy for the kind of paddling the person you are shopping for does. Take into account their body shape and the style of PFD they currently own. Shop for great PFDs here.
4. A Rumpl Puffy Blanket
Rumpl’s mission is to introduce the world to better blankets. Made with modern materials found in premium outdoor gear and activewear, they’re modernizing the boring blanket category. Packable, lightweight and super durable Rumpl blankets transition perfectly from inside to outside, ideal for cottage weekends, camping trips and stashing in your car to warm up at the take out. Available in a variety of colors and prints, you’re sure to find one to match your gift-receiver’s style. See Rumpl’s full lineup here.
5. Gloves for chilly paddling days
If the paddler you are gift-giving to plans to paddle closer to Christmas than July 4th, paddling gloves are a great choice. Even when bundled into a high-quality dry suit, a great day kayaking can become miserable with exposed hands. Gloves for paddlers range from finglerless neoprene to full-on Pogies that cover the whole hand but allow for excellent paddle grip. See the full range of gloves here.
6. Agawa Canyon’s Boreal21 Folding Saw
We took the Boreal21 on a kayaking trip and loved the performance of this 21 inch folding bow saw that unfolds quickly and makes high performance cuts. It packs down small enough to easily fit inside a kayak, but is still very effective at site for cutting firewood. The Boreal21 is a great gift to make any kayakers life at the campsite easier. Check it out here.
7. The High Route Tent
The High Route Tent from Sierra Designs is going to be the new favorite tent for the canoe tripper in your life. Designed by Andrew Skurka, a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year and expedition hiker, the tent weighs slightly more than two pounds. It excels in stormy and buggy weather and is a great tent for canoe trips with many portages and harsh weather. See the High Route Tent here.
8. A storage rack for canoes and kayaks
Nothing feels as good as an exciting day paddling and exploring. Runner-up? Starting contentedly at your meticulously organized gear cave and knowing where all your favorite items are in case a last minute adventure arises. Help contribute to your loved one’s satisfaction with a canoe or kayak storage rack. You can explore everything from simple one-boat set-ups or entire canoe trees for the paddler who needs a home for the whole fleet. See storage options here.
9. A new paddle
Maybe the years of canoeing and kayaking adventures are starting to show on your favorite paddler’s stick. Or perhaps they are taking up a new discipline of paddling and their current paddle isn’t the best choice to help them progress. For example, a canoeist who loves flatwater and is beginning to learn whitewater will want a different paddle for each style. Make sure you find out their measurements and buy a paddle specifically for the kind of paddling they love. Check out kayak paddles here and canoeing paddles here.
10. Down booties
Down booties are tiny, soft godsends for paddlers. Whether it’s slipping into them at the campsite or exchanging with damp river shoes, paddler quality of life increases with these small down bundles. They pack super small for easy packing—and stocking stuffing. MEC and REI both have great options.
11. A new skirt
When kayak skirt material begins to deteriorate and holes form, it means the essential item is no longer serving its purpose. It can mean sitting in a lot of water while paddling and frequently having to drain the kayak. Keep your favorite double-blader drier and more comfortable with a brand new skirt. Find out the kayak model they paddle and ensure the skirt selected will be a proper fit. See skirts here.