How much water would you take?

The big trip is looming! My kayak is sitting on my living room floor while I make up the “load plan” for how to squeeze all my crap into it. I’m just wondering how much water to pack for my trip. It will be a trip anywhere from 6 to 10 days from Augusta to Savannah. I have a Katadyn filter to use for emergencies, but I’m really not enthused about the prospect of filtering water out of the Savannah River (esp. since I’ll be downstream from the Savannah River Nuclear facility…hehe…). So I’m wondering how much water to cram into my kayak. I’ll be paddling probably a good 10 hours a day or so at a fairly steady, but not difficult pace. Temps will be anywhere from slightly below freezing to maybe highs in the low to mid-60s. I was thinking along the lines of taking 4 gallons along. There won’t be any chance for reprovisioning until I get to Savannah (I’m actually paddling through Savannah to Little Tybee Island). Anyone have any thoughts on water consumption/needs? It’s been my experience that paddling for most of the day across a lake in the summer I consume about 70 fluid ounces (2 liters)…is the assumption that temperature changes water needs correct? If so a lower temperature may require less water?

Just curious how you guys figure out your water planning on extended trips where filtering is the “last” option… :slight_smile:



the going rate
is 1 gallon per person per day

4 gal. may be a little
on the high side. usually carry about 4 qt .for a 3-4 day trip in the summer. Some may depend on how much you personally use per day.

One gallon per day per person
for temperatures below 80*. Includes drinking and cooking. Over 80* 1 1/2 gallons per day. Never have run short.

I usually take about…
7qts for a weekend (3 day) trip. That is for cooking & drinking. I usually have a quart or so left over, by the end of the trip.

The trick is to take sips as you go (every ten minutes or so). That will quench your pallete & keep you hydrated. By sips I mean: maybe a mouthfull. That way you are still staying hydrated & conserving water for cooking & such also. Take along enough sodas (pop) to have one a day, that will also keep the pallette wet & conserve water for cooking.

Have fun & we will be EXPECTING (LOL) pics & a trip report after your return.

Paddle easy,


7 qt. ???
seemed like 10 gal. portaging your boat the last camp trip!lol.

2- 1qt canteens, 1- 2ltr hydration pak, 1- 1.5ltr hydration pack.

Just like I told Longshadow… I had to carry alot of Heather’s stuff in my boat because that Perception America couldn’t carry alot due to the “Big A**” rectangulaer foam flotation blocks. Plus, I also had to carry a tent. Even though she likes camping- she won’t sleep “under the stars”.

Paddle easy,


Don’t forget
If you are taking canned food (spinach for example canned soup another), the liquid in the can counts as fluids as well. Unless you throw it away. It is enough to count if you need space.


Good stuff…
Well…as usual I got a good mix of opinions :slight_smile: I promise to report back with all the gory details…lol…I already promised in the “recipe” thread on the other forum that I’d report back how my camp cooking turned out. I’ll also monitor my water consumption… :slight_smile:

You never know…I might run into some river people that I can top off my supply with too…but I’m definitely erring on the side of too much water… :slight_smile:



Between US301 & Ga119 about midway or your route there are several boat landings & houses on the river. I don’t know of any commercial outlets but locals are friendly & I feel certain would allow you to replenish your water supplies. Most folks you meet on the water this time of year will be true river rats & most likely willing to assist you in locating fresh water sources.

Ebenezer Creek
There is a private facility just down stream of Ebenezer Creek on the GA side. Landing, snacks, swimming beach. I’m sure they have water there. If you filter water take it from side streams. Some of them are remarkably clean. I would hide jugs at the highway crossings. 1 Gallon a day is the minimum IMHO. I would have extra containers available and pack some in any left over space you have when you load up in Augusta. Its not like you are going to have to portage it.

Be careful in the port. There are few places to safely pull out of the river and if you swim your nearest shore may a concrete wall. There is a ferry going back and forth to Hutchinson Island from River Street constantly. Watch for it, it is not going up or down strem like most traffic, but jumps out into the river suddenly and crosses. I have seen some close calls with small craft and this ferry.

Wish I could join you. I live in the very headwaters on the Tugalo River and think often about launching at the end of the road and paddling to Tybee.

Not enough
In Arizona, my philosophy is that if you finsih your paddle with less than a cup of water in your canteen, you need to seriously think about doubling your intake and carrying capacity.

also drink lots of water
(like a gallon a day) and take a little more salt that usual for a couple of days before you leave. Your urine should be clear especially at the start of a trip. I go heavy on the water and like about 5 or 6 quarts per day, ( I have not darrie a can for 22 years. a good source after two or three days, but in backcountry travel you never really know.