Tuesday, 28 August 2012 13:53
As Dave and I paddle down the East Coast, we are shifting gears from paddling in remote wilderness to paddling in areas that see more boat traffic. While we don't plan to do much night paddling, I'm sure that we will have our fair share of early, pre-sunrise mornings in order to take advantage of calmer conditions. With that in mind, part of our preparation involves making sure that we will be visible to larger boats in low light/no light conditions.
North Water's Reflective Deck Line Covers certainly help in making us more visible on the water. They make two nice, wide, reflective stripes near our bows. They were easy to add: just a matter of untying the deck line and sliding the covers on in the desired position.
Dave chose to place his close to his bow and I have mine positioned slightly further back. When considering where to put them on your boat, consider where they will do the most good. Also consider spacing of your deck fittings and how well deck line will hold the deck line covers in place. For example, Dave's seem to get twisted when his bow is repeatedly splashed, exposing the dark backing instead of the reflective surface. Mine lie flat, held tight against the deck of the kayak.
If we do find ourselves paddling in the dark, we will take a few more precautions as well. We will certainly each have a light on. We have also added reflective tape to both sides of our paddle blades. Our MTI Adventurewear PFDs have reflective trim and safety whistles in the pockets. We will meet all the necessary requirements of the US and Canadian Coast Guard. (Bryan Hansel wrote a useful article about signaling devices required by the US Coast Guard on Paddling Light.) Most importantly, we will be aware of where we are paddling in the dark– avoiding high traffic areas or spots that are tricky to navigate.
To learn more about the North Water Reflective Deck Line Covers: http://northwater.com/html/products/sea_kayak/SKsubdirectory/Reflective-DeckLine-Covers.htmlblog comments powered by Disqus