Getting ready for the river trip next week, and trying to put my backpack into the kayak. Almost everything is sliding in, except my sleeping bag. Even in the compression sack it gets stuck on the rim sliding it into the back. I think I wil adjust and go with a 50 deg bag, long johns and maybe tuck a wool blankey in somewhere.

Hammock, bug net (dry bag - db) and tarp (db) are stowed forward and there is plenty of room for 5 days worth of food. (Vac sealed per day)

Probably put the water bladder in the fwd bungee rigging so I can get to the hose.

Aft I figure

Dry box with wallet, TP, phone, flashlight

55L dry bag (with clothes(db), sleeping bag/blankey, 1st aid,(db) water filter and tabs, flashlights w/spare batts,(db) spare fuel, bug spray, old guy meds, wash kit, more TP, extra rope)

I am kicking around a 20L db on the aft deck. I might put it inside however I am torn if I want to. I figure boots, stove and cooking kit, sunscreen in SPF Irish (110), rain coat, and the food of the day. If I do that, I have no need to open the hatches after they are closed in the am before we land in the PM, but it clutters the deck and puts weight high.

If I put it inside, I could put a folding chair on which would be in the way, but not to heavy and a creature comfort.


What is your kayak?
And what’s your sleeping bag?

If it’s a sit-in kayak, usually the largest space for a sleeping bag is in the hatch directly behind the seat. A 20-degree down bag should fit in that space in most kayaks. Perhaps yours is synthetic? A 50-degree bag plus a wool blanket should not be necessary and will only take up more space.

A 55L dry bag is huge. It might be easier to pack if you split that up into smaller bags. Are your hatches watertight? Personally I use almost no dry bags because my hatches are watertight. I don’t even put my sleeping bag in a plastic bag, just a simple stuff sack. I’ve never had a drop of water on my sleeping bag.

It’s preferable not to have anything heavy on the deck if you can avoid it, nor should anything of value be lashed to the deck. The items you’re thinking of putting on your rear deck sound heavy. Do you really need access to your stove for lunch? The deck isn’t the place for a stove and cooking things.

What about the space in front of your feet in the cockpit? A medium-sized fishing tackle bag can hold all of the items you’ll need while paddling. Clip one end of the strap to a deck bungee.

If you run out of space you can consider a front deck bag like those made by Seattle Sports. The deck isn’t a good place for your lunch because it gets hot there.

When you say folding chair do you mean a simple foam hiking-type seat? That can really add to your comfort and it’s worth bring it.


sea lion

– Last Updated: Jun-06-14 7:17 PM EST –

The bag is a 35deg mummy doesnt weigh much but isnt the most compressible. A fleece 50deg bag compacts to a 8l x 6dia roll, a surplus mil wool blanket can fold flat in the big dry bag. Not the first time camping, first time loading a kayak. I have the space, just not in the right shape.

The big dry bag is used as the liner for my backpack, it is what it is. Most of the things are packed in db's (dry bags) in the big bag.
One thing about a large bag/pack, you do not have to fill it. With the hammock and tarp out it will be about 1/2 full. As to watertight, they ought to be, havent flipped it yet, probably will this trip.

Stove is a backpacking stove that nests inside the cookset with a fuel canister. Whole thing takes up less space than a boot. I do backpacking food so it is pretty much all dehydrated. Stove is a good option, but is a bad option to lose.

space blanket ?
Small bags packed in reverse order of use: less potential water damage, easy find. Clear Vinyl is tops. Worth the money. Improves life 100%.

First time I used clear vinyl found stuff lost 3 months ago.

Buy 2 storage boxes from Walmart holding front hatch load, rear hatch load…in order of packing.

Clear vinyl bag for cockpit. Fasten down on Velcro an cam straps thru u loops maybe in Home Depot.

I’m not getting the polyester sleeping bag in either. Considering down and a DIY goretex over bag.

No Gopro ? VHF ? Delorme system ?

Hipower sunscreen could be unhealthy. Possibly a product of screen wars not common sense.

Too much sun ? Take a look at Sunday Afternoons sun hat at Gear Lab.

One packing trick
is to put the empty stuff sack or dry bag inside the hatch first (or at least most of it) and then stuff the sleeping bag, clothes, etc into it. Since the fully stuffed bag is so much more rigid, you can often get much more through the hatch this way. Of course when it comes time to get it out you will have to do the reverse and empty some out of the dry bag before trying to pull it back out the hatch.

Good luck.


The sleeping bag for me was a no go, so I purchased a more expensive ground pad and a new, more expensive bag that both packed smaller.

Lots of LITTLE bags…
heaviest stuff goes lowest in the boat, and closest to the middle…slick bags that slide past one another easily.

Less is more.
Wise Ancient Kayakers say,

“Reverence is the elimination of all that is unnecesary.”

Two small bags, or one small goosedown bag and one poly blanket, give as much warmth and comfort with ground pad, as one big fat old synthetic sleeping bag.

I don’t put anything on my back deck–It either fits in the hatches or it’s out.

When one is light and mobile, one is independent and unburdened…Save the extra room for 2 lbs of FOOD per day.

It’s a paddle trip, not a moon shot.

This is
coming out of a backpack so in general it is A. small, B. light.

It is just different to load. What will go inside a 55L db that I use in the backpack, will not go in the 55L db that is flatened out in the boat. I am pretty close right now. Wed AM we will find out how close.

I put 2 50deg fleece bags in a db all the way to the rear in the back hatch. 2 in case a scout needs one, gotta cover emergancies, and I tossed in some long johns if it is cool. Hammock, bug net, and tarp went in 2 bags then. 55L in the back hatch to pick up odds and ends. 1st aid, h2o filter, clothes, old guy meds, tooth brush and soap… Dry box w/phone, keys, and TP against the rear bulkhead.

Boots are going in the front hatch with ground tarp, stove and rain coat. Food is vaccumed sealed by day and will be stuffed fwd. Probably toss in a MRE in case someone runs short.

Platypus bladder will go in the fwd rigging.

As to sunscreen. If you look in the dictionary under Scotch-Irish red headed (awesome looking) white guy there is a pic of me. I have used the Hawian tropic 110 spf and it works. I will burn through 30+spf and have done so and I do not tan, I just turn deeper shades of red as summer goes along. I also have a stupid hat. It is tan with a large bill and a French Forien Legion neck cover. I love it.

backpacker ?

– Last Updated: Jun-09-14 8:29 PM EST –

well, if you backpack that load then no prob here. Access, ease of loading for time not in water (TNIW), and bow/stern trim for conditions, hull characteristics.

110 spf ! I'm based on south Florida's Gulf Coast. We rarely see your breed even motor through.

I tried 80-100 spf for an expedition tour. That level goo contained a plastic material absorbed into the skin. My skin response was to weaken, shrivel, and age.

I researched the area finding widespread concern among a spectrum of interested parties from me to parents to med people. Bottom line continues that FDA does not have oversight of skin of beauty products.

Smell something out of 'Congress' ? Sweden/England et al eliminated over 500 compounds in the skin emollient category that are used here in USA.

Walmart has an excellent dried tropical fruit bag. Great with Red Bull Lime.

Adding a bit
of extra because I dont have to hump it. Like the extra fleece bag, spare food and chair. Spare stuff because there is a real good chance that a scout will get his stuff wet at least once. I broke down and decided on the chair, going to be some down time, not a have to make distance trip this time.

"I’m based on south Florida’s Gulf Coast. We rarely see your breed even motor through. " Avoided like the plague. I would just catch on fire going outside there.

The 110 is spray on and goes on light. I figured that when I hit the button, a little guy would come out with a roller and pail.

I have done the mixed fruit at Wally world, great to add to oatmeal. As to Redbull, I would have to carry a can, so I drink coffee (singles packs and SB’s instant packets) mix filtered water with gatorade, and use the little MIO drops to cut the river flavor that is left.


Relax your upper back and mid shoulders in a

Wonderful. I bought an aluminum folder. No room left but alas, the back section is too short for my body.

Device is intended as a canoe load. I’ll take a second look at the folder with a hacksaw in hand.

With scouts try a bag of space blankets and bug nets.

space blankets (2)
are in my 1st aid kit and are ok for a 1 night emergency. A fleece bag is better for a multi day deal.