For multiday kayak trips, do you make any attempt to de-stench your clothes/gear

If after a day of paddling, I just put my gear back without cleaning, it can get some definite funk. I hear this is especially true in freshwater which is where most of my paddling is limited to. I’m going to be doing a weeklong paddle down the Altamaha River (GA) later this summer (combined with several days worth of day paddles the week before and I most won’t be able to engage in my normal post-paddle cleaning ritual. I’m wondering if most people here who have done multiday outings just don’t worry about it, or have some sort of routine for keeping the smell down. I should perhaps point out that it’s not just the smell. A number of years ago I got a rash on my neck that led the dermatologist to ask if I was a paddler, as he thought it might be a bacterial infection caused by a dirty PFD strap rubbing against my neck (which I assume it was).

I could take a collapsible bucket and some Sink the Stink or similar product. If I so choose I can camp at developed camping areas (i.e., with fresh water) along the way, but would mostly prefer to wilderness camp. I wonder if these products could be effectively used with the river water (the same water that’s causing my gear to become odiferous in the first place). Also, PFD wouldn’t fit in bucket. Maybe I could use my kayak itself as the rinse basin. Just thinking “out loud” at this point.

If I am not going to be near civilization, I don’t worry about stuff like that.

I do hang to dry and air out when I can. I hope the UV kills some of the funk.

For gear, not clothes, I put up a line and hang everything to dry whenever possible. With frequent rinses through rolling and swimming, I don’t find that stuff stinks much. I wash clothes in a dry bag full of water with some camp soap. If you find the right ratio of clothes, water, and air you can get some good agitation action going.

I have never washed clothing or gear on mulit-day ventures unless I happened to be staying a night at some campground that offered laundry facilities. I hang PFDs, paddling jackets, paddling pants, dry tops or suits and shoes on a line to dry as much as possible after paddling. Back when I used wet suits I did the same with them

But I do bring multiple pairs of shorts, shirts, synthetic under-layers, socks, etc so I am not wearing the same thing every day.

Years ago, I would drive from NE Pennsylvania down to the South East and go from river to river whitewater paddling for 7 to 9 days straight and usually would not have the opportunity to hand clothing to dry during the day. Stuff hung out at night was usually wetter in the morning than when it was hung, even if it did not rain, as much of the southern Appalachian area is a temperate rain forest. And by the 8th or 9th day I had a bunch of really stinky polypro to deal with.

For short trips (3-5 days) I usually don’t bother but on my month-long trips I wash clothes occasionally in a collapsible bucket and camp soap, but don’t bother with my PFD, etc. Once you get a build-up of salt in your clothes they will start to chafe you. For cool weather trips I love Merino wool; wool tends to stink a lot less than most synthetics and is comfortable against the skin.

I think you have to differentiate between salt and fresh water. On the Maine Island Trail which is saltwater, trips can last up to 30 days. Rinsing out each day just is impractical.Overnight fog can just impede drying, I’m sure that paddlers who do those long trips try to hit a laundry on the mainland now and then.

On freshwater canoe trips in Canada that do last a couple of weeks. I just use some CampSuds and wash on a sunny day. I dry on a line under a tarp which keeps dew off… Its mostly sox and tops that get washed.

I can’t see why your S and S wouldn’t work… We drink out of the river. Never had city water in my life for a water supply.

I used to guide and would be out for about 3 weeks, sometimes working trips back to back, for closer to 7 weeks with the travel time included. Took a minimal amount of clothing, just what I needed to stay comfortable, no extras to rotate into for a clean set of clothes. Would take an extra pair of socks and underwear, but that’s pretty much it. Also no toilet paper, but that’s a completely different topic.
For warm weather and using a rash guard I’d just hang that out to dry in the sun as soon as I got off the water. Maybe air out my paddling top, skirt, and life jacket for a bit, but then I’d stash it back in the boat under the cockpit cover to keep the dew off.
For cooler weather paddling where I’d need layers to stay comfortable on the water, but ended up with damp clothes. I’d keep a light long sleeve shirt handy in a drybag, then as soon as I got to camp I’d pull off the wet layers, put the dry shirt on next to my skin, then put the wet layers back on top. Then put on a fleece or puffy jacket, set up camp, have a snack, and by dinner time I’d have dry clothes. A wind shirt or jacket is also great for an outer layer as well.
I kept a small container of goldbond powder in my sleeping bag and would do a quick dusting of that before going to sleep. Never bothered with deodorant. I would bring a small container of good soap for hand washing, and washing up “other areas” as well.
For rashes I’d take a small container of witch hazel and some cotton balls, and use that as a cleanser before bed, and just pack out the used cotton balls.
The merino wool is great for cutting down the funk.
A cone of incense stashed in your clothes bag is pretty nice, so long as it doesn’t attract any big critters.

Never thats why I bought a boat that holds huge amount of gear (247 liters) yet is only 20.5 inches wide. Tiderace Pace Tour 17. I like fresh cloths everyday and a cotton sleeping shirt.

@dc9mm said:
Never thats why I bought a boat that holds huge amount of gear (247 liters) yet is only 20.5 inches wide. Tiderace Pace Tour 17. I like fresh cloths everyday and a cotton sleeping shirt.

That would be me pack plenty have spares to wash.

I go to the other extreme. On a week long summer trip I’ll have one set of warm weather clothes (lightweight pants/shirt), one set of warm clothes for the evening (fleece/wool), and sometimes a backup set to wear while the others are being washed or accidentally wet. Add a variety of socks and I’m set for clothing. This makes it pretty much essential to be able to wash them at least every couple days in the hot summer sun.

I used to pack clothes for every day, or maybe every two days, but opening up a bag of dirty clothes at the end of a trip after it’s been sitting in the bottom of a pack or hatch just about makes me want to throw them out. I have lots of room in my boats, but prefer to use it for things other than clothing.