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When you go on a road trip to paddle, you definitely want to have everything you need so that you don’t have to be either freezing your tail off, kayaking barefoot, or even hand paddling! Overall, you want to be able to do everything you came to do without being held back by the absence of pants, paddles, or other important items in your luggage. So, as to assure that you’ll have the best trip possible and be able to prance around as freely as you want, here are 5 tips I’ve come up with to pack well for a paddling trip.

1. Check the weather.

This is really basic, I know, but it’s much more helpful than having to go to the nearest walmart to buy fleeces because the water was 20 degrees colder than you thought. Check the weekly temperatures, water temperatures if possible, and be sure to bring extra layers just in case.

2. Make a list of what you need.

Especially for long trips or expeditions where you’ll need to bring a lot more gear, creating a checklist makes it easier to have everything you need. Even write down what paddling gear you’ll need, because you never know when those shoes off in the corner will slip your mind!

3. Pack with someone else.

If you want to be sure you won’t forget one last thing, then do your packing together with someone who’s going to the same river you are. Check items off as you go and compare what you have to assure that you won’t forget anything.

4. Bring music to listen to.

This is a great way to pass long hours in a car or plane, and if you’re planning on making an edit or video anytime soon, having a playlist of music to choose from will come in handy!

5. Get a hard drive.

For rivers that you know you’ll be filming a ton on, having a hard drive is very helpful for when you run out of storage on your GoPro/camera. They come with a lot of storage, so about 1 terabyte should work with a good deal of footage.

– Julia Frangenberg