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Articles by Tom Watson

Kids Life Jackets

Of all the safety gear used by those who enjoy on-water sports, none should be scrutinized more than the famil…

Tags: Safety, PFD, kids

A Kayaker’s Spring Checklist

I remember the anticipation of the spring thaw when I could finally get out on the water again after a long, c…

Tags: Kayak, maintenance, storage

Life Jackets in the New World Order

Tom Watson reviews some of the changes that are in store for defining “Life Jackets” and “PFDs”? It’s called “…

Tags: PFD, Safety, gear

Magical Moments: Kayaking Alaska

I learned to sea kayak in Alaska, in the waters of the Pacific Ocean surrounding Kodiak Island. From glass smo…

Tags: destination, Alaska, kayaking

Base Layer Basics

Our skin is our body’s largest organ, the ultimate “base” layer of protection.  It only makes sense then …

Tags: Clothing, Kayak, canoes

Compactible Gear for Paddlers

I had just spent what seemed like hours painstakingly loading my kayak at McCargoe Cove, Isle Royale. We had h…

Tags: Canoe, Kayak

River Hazards

I learned the hard way, why, at certain times of the year – during spring flooding primarily – our local river…

Tags: Kayak, Canoe, navigation

Deck Lines & Rigging

By the most basic definition, any form of rope or cordage on a vessel is referred to as a "line". Prefaced w…

Tags: Kayak, ropes

A Kayaker's Camping Checklist

Some of my most memorable kayaking trips were those solo overnights or weekend adventures where I packed up th…

Tags: Kayak, camping, tips

Grab Your Gloves

For blue water paddlers, a good pair of paddling gloves is a standard piece of gear/wardrobe. Perhaps not alwa…

Tags: gear, gloves

Buoy & Marker Messages

"Red Sky at Morning, Sailor take warning! Red sky at night, sailor's delight." Almost anyone who's ever s…

Tags: Safety

Quick Fix Repairs for Rotomolded Kayaks

Short of actually plastic welding, there are a few quick fixes that will keep a rotomolded hull from getting t…

Tags: Kayak