Carolina Mountain Sports
123 West Broad St
Statesville, NC
(704) 871-1444
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  Carolina Mountain Sports
■  Tips for renting a canoe or kayak for the rivers.

Folks that own  a watercraft perhaps have done some research and know accessories they need.  If you plan to rent a kayak or canoe and give it a try on some of our rivers,  what sort of accessories should you bring along and what should you know?  Paddling, floating and fishing in the current of a river present new challenges. A little research on paddling strokes and techniques is a really good idea for canoe or well as a little study on what to do if you capsize, as well as river hazards like “strainers.”  A google or bing search will provide some good info. 

A couple of 15-20' sections of 3/8 --1/2 floating rope....primarily to tie to the boat and to tie around your waist or clip to your belt when you want to get out and stretch,  or to wade and fish.  Don't want your boat to get away.  Seen it happen...not a pretty sight. 

Anything of value, that needs to stay dry should be in a waterproof case or dry bag,  properly sealed.  And, if not an electronic key, make sure your car keys are absolutely 100% secure in a zip pocket or cord around your neck...and have a spare hidden on the car.  Yep...seen folks loose their keys and no spare.  You know the name of the creek...

Drifting, catching and landing fish at the same time is tough...if you hook up (or get hung)  you'll want to stop.  If you’ve read up on anchoring, in moving water, and you are comfortable with the process,  bring  a suitable anchor. If you haven't studied anchoring, leave it home and  rest the boat against a  ledge, shoal, bush etc to hold it in position. 

Your own life jacket is nice…one you will wear, and with some for sunscreen, fly box, and other accessories like a you don't have to go crawling and leaning around to reach  an item...twisting and leaning in a watercraft can lead to an unexpected dunking...

If you plan to wade much...wear good shoes or better… your felt-soled wading boots.
On your first trip or two, keep the gear to a minimum e.g. do you really need a cooler with ice...and that full-sized tackle bag..or a digital camera and cell phone.  And if you don't want to chase it downstream, tie it to the boat.

Put the boat in the water before you get in...don't try to keep part of it resting on the bank and push off.  Getting out...turn the boat sideways to the bank/beach and get out.  Don't try to power the boat up onto the sand and rocks...   It won't work and it's more unstable.  Have the entire boat floating when you get in and out.  

A simple first aid kit with antibiotic cream...there's some weird stuff living in our waters.

And maybe a simple folding seat e.g. Crazy Creek chair to supplement a crappy or non-existent seat in a sit on top kayak or strap to a canoe seat for some back support.

You navigate a boat downriver, not so much by turning around obstacles (which can get you into touble) , but by moving the boat sideways…either with a strong draw stroke or pry stroke.    A little knowledge of proper strokes and technique will make paddling easier, safer and more fun. 


Updated: July 17, 2021
Carolina Mountain Sports

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