Take my SINK to the tropics?

I live in Michigan and tour the Great Lakes frequently in my SINK sea kayaks. However, I will soon be moving to the Caribbean (Grenada) and I’m wondering what to do w/ my beloved VCP Skerry & Hurricane Tracer. It seems like the inside of a skirted sea kayak would be similar to an oven in 85 degree weather and harsh tropical sunshine. Hopefully some of you know more about this and can comment.

Also note: I will definately buy a pair of SOT boats to take with me. But that conversation is for another day.

Three options
Morning, evening, and especially night paddling.

OK - 4th option is rolling a lot - but in 88 degree water it doens’t have much cooling effect.

If transport will be easy, bring them. Also Buy a nice SOT for beach play/snorkeling/fishing too, and maybe a surf ski…

#1 get a Tilley…

If I remember correctly from my diving days the water stays a round a constant 81 degrees, cooler than in Florida in the summer. Get lightweight skirts or go without a skirt. Then there is the shade factor of being inside a SINK.

In the SOT remember to keep sun block on top of your feet…

Sink into the Tropics…
Heck yes!

85 degree weather? Aren’t you staying for summer?

Pay attention to the other advise posted here, and keep in mind proper hydration and clothing, and you’re likely to love it.

It will get warm in the cockpit, we keep splashing water on the foredeck, wear shorts and sandals.

Loose fitting light color shirt and definately the Tiley or other similar hat.

The heat is very much like the cold. Proper attitude and proper preparedness make it bearable.


You know you
have to take the Tracer. Once you have one you can’t let it go.

of the GRAY/GREY family (we actually not quite equidistntly live between them) and they give good advice.

Especially Grayhawk -my feet are racoon-tanned from SOT-ing it down here in sandals.

But even more importantly, it will be VERY wise to know just how much more the sun intensity here in Miami is than it is WAAAAY up north in Michigan.

And it’ll be that much MORE intense where you’re going -hi SPF block is de rigeur in the tropics -it prebents you from acting as your own cyalume at night, allows to to sleep on your skin, and helps cut WAY down on skin cancers.

Get yourself a good SOT fer sure -an OK S-Pro TW like mine, or an OK P-15, or a WS Tarpon-160 like Greyak used to have (you don’t still have it, so you, Kris?) if you want a good, all-round, multipurpose SOT.

All are good paddlers for SOTs -they won’t be as easy on you racking up miles as it is in the SINKs, but they are all good. All are good as dive platforms for either skin or SCUBA diving -and you WILL engage in UW stuff & not solely paddling in gorgeous Caribbean waters like THOSE!

But so NOT lose your SINKs. I can’t tell you about your Skerry, but Sally really likes her Tracer, and because it’s TRylon, will probably ship as easily as regular roto Tupperware -we had ours trucked down from SC, triple bubble-wrapped and wxtra padded and stem & stern, and it did just fine.

We paddle ours sans skirts. And butter up with the sunblock on the tops of your legs, as well as your upper body, when SINKing…

Lucky you…!

Make sure you send pix and get back to us after your move and let us know how Grenada is to


-Frank in Miami