How To Cruise with Kayaks
Take along a small boat that you can paddle into thin waters. You’ll be glad you did. Hands-On Sailor: Living Aboard from our December 2012 issue.
Looking for “sunscreen” for your kayak? Try a product called 303 Aerospace Protectant. We reapply it at least every six months and sometimes in between. Canvas covers also work well, but we’ve had good results with the less expensive 303. As with all cruising equipment, a good freshwater rinse from time to time is beneficial.
Always store seats, life jackets, paddles, and extra stuff inside the boat when not in use for extended periods. Having said that, we do leave our seats and life jackets on the kayaks while we’re cruising six months a year because it’s easy not to use them if it’s too much trouble to get them ready.
Handles and webbing won’t last forever in the tropical sun, so be sure to have replacements; we’ve replaced ours twice in six years. The 303 Protectant will slow but not stop the deterioration.
With her husband, David, Jan Irons spends half her time stateside and the other half cruising in distant locales aboard the couple’s Passport 37, Winterlude; visit her website (http://www.commutercruiser.com) to read of their adventures. Jan is also the co-author, with Carolyn Shearlock, of the recently published The Boat Galley Cookbook (International Marine).