For your initial trips you do not need to buy specialised canoeing clothing or equipment. Most people will have suitable clothing for use on their initial trips.

After a while and once you are hooked on kayaking, you may want to consider buying some of your own clothing and kit. Initially you can just use club kit and your own clothing. If you want to buy some of your own clothing or kit then get advise from some of the more experienced members before splashing out with the cash!

Clothing etc

 The table below show what you may need to bring on a trip depending on what time of year it is etc. The list is fairly extensive but initially you can use whatever clothing you have. If you only intend to paddle flat water in the summer months then you will not need to bring any specialised clothing. However if you intend to paddle white water or surf in the winter months then you will need to use more specialised clothing.


Spare set of dry warm clothing You will get damp and possibly very wet whilst paddling.  All year
Towel To dry off and cover up whilst changing  All year
Money Buy drinks or food, petrol money for driver, club kit hire etc.  All year
Drinks  Water or energy drinks  All year
Food  Energy or chocolate bars, bananas etc  All year
Swimming Costume Underneath base layer   All year
Base layer Top  Synthetic material that does not hold water. Can be bought cheaply at an outdoor shop.  All year
Fleece Top  Extra layer of warmth that can be taken off when too hot.  All year
Footwear  Old trainers or neoprene boots.  All year
Cagoule/Anorak/Windproof top We have club cagoules that you can use or use your own windproof top.  All year
Nylon T-shirt  Synthetic rather than cotton as it will not hold water.  Summer
Shorts  Shorts for summer months only.  Summer
Sun Hat  Sun protection  Summer
Sunscreen  Sun protection  Summer
Wooly Hat/Skull cap  Keep your head warm with a wooly hat or a neoprene skull hat.  Winter
Base Layer Bottom

 Old tracksuit botton or preferably synthetic base layer leggings which can be bought at an outdoor shop.

Overtrousers  Worn over the base layer leggings  Winter
Gloves/Pogies  Keep your hands warm! The club has a few that you can use.  Winter
Long John Wetsuit

 Cheap alternative to a drysuit for use on white water and surf trips.

Drysuit  Only if you have one or are going to paddle a lot of white water or surfing in the winter months  Winter
Hand Warmers  Reusable hand warmers for use in mid winter  Winter
Hot Drinks  Hot drink in a flask  Winter



If it is your first trip, the person leading/driving will assist in making sure that you are fully kitted out. However it is always the responsibility of the individual to ensure they have what they need and to return it to wherever it came from, (sometimes members supplement club kit with their own spare kit, please ensure it is returned in the same state).

Always check that the equipment you intend to use is fit for the type of canoeing you’re going to do. If in doubt, then ask the trip or session organiser or another experienced member of the club. Here is a list of some of the things you need to check:

  • Are there holes in the boat?
  • Is the drain plug correctly fitted?
  • Are the paddles about to break?
  • Are there airbags fitted and fully inflated to the boat? These are an important safety feature.

If hiring Club equipment - you'll need boat, paddle, spraydeck, buoyancy aid, helmet, cagoule. Please remember to pay the trip organiser the appropriate kit hire monies.

Please ensure that the kit fits you, (i.e. you can fit into the kayak, the Bouyency Aid can be adjusted to fit you, the spraydeck is the correct waist size and cockpit size, the helmet fits and that the paddle is correct feather and left/right hand control as required). If you take ill fitting kit you may not be able to paddle! If in doubt ask a more experienced member.

Please treat all club kit as if it were your own and report any problems to the organiser or to the kit officer, (e.g. broken footrest, missing airgbags, etc).

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