Monday, May 11, 2009

2 Months….

Officially (if all goes as planned) I’m on a two month countdown to my trip.

I did go up north last weekend and stopped in at Swift Kayak, I brought all my gear and was hoping to get a test pack of the kayak in but alas… the weather didn’t co-operate and there was a massive storm on Saturday. I did finally get a chance to see the actual kayaks so it wasn’t totally unproductive. I have a new appreciation for kayaks now and must say, they have a great selection of boats and gear. Will reschedule the test pack for a day with some sun.

Took advantage of the bad weather to try out my tent for the first time. Figured rain, blowing wind and cold temperature would be as good a test as any i will come across on my trip. Seeing as I was up north for Mothers Day, I set my tent up in her backyard (she thinks I’m crazy BTW) Rain actually stopped before i set it up but was still cold and windy. After dinner and some conversation, headed out to my accommodations for the night. Had my IPOD hanging from the room and watched a movie while I relaxed all comfy in my tent. Slept like a baby and was warm and comfortable. Works for me.

I only had two issues, my mother has an outside cat and the thing kept walking under the vestibule rubbing up against the tent where my head was, note to self… bring slingshot for annoying pesky critters (lol)

Second, my brother who lives down the road popped over and decided it would be funny to rap on the top of the tent for kicks, I was just drifting off when that happened and it startled me pretty good. note to self… use slingshot on brother next time too…

I think he felt justified because his son is learning to play guitar and i taught him to play the intro to “smoke on the water” and gave him an amp, he plays it over and over and over and over, including 6am in the morning. Only fitting that I taught him a few more equally annoying riffs to “entertain” mom and dad go Noah go, keep it up bud.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Packing it all up

Something I’ve been concerned about ever since I started planning this trip was how everything was going to fit. When you look at a flat list of gear it looks overwhelming (mine included, 100+ items so far) and not ever having packed a kayak before you’re left scratching your head.

Once it’s all packed up, it’s not actually that bad, here is how what I have so far breaks down.

  • Sleeping pad double bagged with contractor garbage bags, didn’t see the need to buy a dry bag for this
  • Tent is also double bagged with contractor garbage bags for the same reason.
  • 10L dry bag to store cooking equipment
  • 10L dry bag to store most of the personal equipment
  • 10L dry bag to store pillow/towel, also double bagged inside
  • 20L dry bag to store sleeping bag, was just a little too wide to fit in a 10L but it doesn’t take up 20L, if i compressed a little more it would probably fit, didn’t want to mess with it
  • 5L dry bag to store First Aid Kit
  • Ditch Bag (did a post on that one) stores most of the stuff I need while paddling and will be in the cockpit behind the seat
  • Waterproof Bag which stores all the electronic equipment, items inside are also in separate waterproof protection just in case, hopefully will fit behind the seat as well.

Next weekend I will figure out where everything goes in the kayak (generally) and post an update.

Final Gear List

Everything is packed up and ready to go, I will be going to Swift Canoe/Kayak next weekend to do a test pack to make sure everything fits into the kayak and guage how much room is left over for food/clothes. Tried to keep everything as compact as possible.

There are two items on this list that I don’t have yet because I can’t find them, may have to order on-line. Deck Compass and Waterproof iPod case.

Excluding food and clothing here is a consolidated list of my gear.


Spray Skirt
Throw Bag
Main Paddle
Spare Paddle
Paddle Float
Bilge Pump
Paddle Leash


Lock Pass
Waterproof Chart Bag
Deck Compass


Handheld VHF
Waterproof VHF Cover
First Aid Kit
Signal Mirror
Ditch Bag
Waterproof Matches/Box
Fire Starter (Swedish FireSteel)
Cotton/Vaseline Tinder
Muli-tool Knife
Duct Tape


Tent Repair Kit
Tent Footprint
Sleeping Bag
Silk Liner Bag Insert
Sleeping Pad


Water Transport
Hydration Pack
Water Bottle
Water Filter
Water Bucket (collapsible)


Compact Stove
Fuel Bottle (30oz)

Spare Fuel (32oz)
Mini Funnel with Filter
Pots/Pans (MSR)
Cutting Board


Folding Chair
Mini Trowel
Mini Umbrella
Mini Broom/Dustpan
Waterproof Flashlight
Garbage Bags


Waterproof Box - Wallet/Camera
Waterproof Bag - All Electronics
Waterproof Case - Blackberry
Spare Batteries
Portable Battery Chargers
Digital Camera
Digital Video (Waterproof)
Digital Audio Recorder
Wall Charger/Phone&Ipod Cables
Ipod Waterproof Case
Ipod Waterproof Headphones


Waterproof Dry Bags (5)
Lip Balm
Bug Repellant
Mosquito Coil


Waterproof Sports Watch
Biodegradable Soap/ Shampoo
Toilet Paper
Playing Cards
Sudoku Book
Sunglasses (spare)
Sunglass Neck Strap
Log Book to document trip
Pen/Pencil/Pencil Sharpener
Books - Paperback