We asked our Instagram followers to name one piece of non-essential gear they simply can’t trip without. After reviewing over a hundred responses, we’ve come to the conclusion that “non-essential” is, of course, a relative term. However, we think you’ll find value in some of these ideas–if only to make your next paddling trip a little more comfortable. Enjoy our favorite 19 responses and let us know what’s missing from this list.

1. A knee pad. Let’s you shift your weight around in the boat to deal with wind or waves.

– @willem_hunt

2. Headlamp. When I’m wearing it it means something fun is about to happen.

– @hughgoesthere150


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3. Ear plugs. Surfers’ ears suck.

– @jc3.14159

4. My notebook. I go back and read my entries when I’m not able to paddle.


5. A tarp to make a sauna.


6. Down camp socks! Because… just all the yes.


7. A small pelican case. I keep it on the deck and store keys, phone, ID, snacks and whatever small items.

– @miss_t_bliss

[ View all Canoes in the Paddling Buyer’s Guide ]

A woman on a camping trip sits close to the fire with fairy lights strung up above
Fact: fairy lights make any outdoor gathering more magical. Photo: Unsplash // Chris Sarsgard.
8. A camp chair, you can’t beat a comfortable seat after a long day of paddling.

– @nverstoppen

9. A fly rod


10. KT tape to pre tape for blisters and to hold down bandages.

– @maddymarq

11. I’m an absolute hammock evangelist.

– @drbigotes

A red camp chair is stationed on a rock overlooking a picturesque lake.
Because nobody wants to sit on wet, slippery rocks while they eat their lunch. Photo: Unsplash // Mick Haupt.
12. A guitar!


13. My warm hat for lunch time stops.


14. Fairy lights on overnight trips.


15. Camping chair and sleeping cot: because I’m too old for some things.

– @jiggerjax

[ Also read: How To Kayak Camp: Tips For Planning, Packing, Portaging & More ]

16. A GoPro to capture all the eddies (it’s never turned on for the good stuff, of course). 


17.  A bidet (water bottle attachment).


18. Crocs sandals.

– @martin_trahan_canoeist

19.  A perculator. Coffee is life.




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