Editors Note: Another guest contribution from Derek to The Prepper Journal. As you know I am a BIG fan of kayaks. As always, if you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and possibly receive a $25 cash award as well as be entered into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies, enter today.
Floods can be one of the most devastating things to happen to homeowners. It happens far too often and can lead you and your family to being exposed if you are not prepared. One of the most important items you can have in these types of scenarios (besides the obvious food, water, first aid) is an inflatable kayak. Now before your mind wanders to the picture of a cheap kids dingy, or a blow-up alligator, you should know some things.
Why Inflatable Kayaks?
Inflatable kayaks have taken leaps and bounds over the years and are starting to outperform the ever traditional hard shell kayaks in sales. This is because…
-Inflatable Kayaks Are Made to Be More Durable
-They take up far less room as many of them fold to be the size of a hockey bag
-These kayaks are far easier to transport
-Inflatable kayaks average cost is less
-They can usually be set up within ten minutes
-Inflatable kayaks are lighter
More and more people are getting into these kayaks because they don’t take up nine feet, they are made from strong materials such as PVC and are easier to transport over land. You can get a very solid quality inflatable kayak for about $300. This is not just an investment for preventative measures, it can also be used for recreational purposes. After all there are a ton of physical and mental benefits from kayaking. (https://floatingauthority.com/20-health-benefits-kayak-exercise/)
So what does this mean in terms of emergencies?
Inflatable Kayaks in Emergency Situations
Inflatable kayaks open up many possibilities not the least of which is YOU can be a life saver (literally). Many of them can take up to 500 pounds of cargo. This means that you can fit family members, food, pets and gear all on one inflatable kayak. I want you to think about floods for a second. Often times people who are not prepared are forced to perch on the roofs of their houses and wait for help for hours, sometimes even days. Why would you want to put you and your family in a vulnerable position like that?
Instead, with an inflatable kayak, you can paddle with your most important belongings, cover more ground, and paddle to a safe and secure area. Best of all you can fold it up when you are done and put it in its carrying case as opposed to having to cast it adrift like so many had to during Hurricane Harvey.
Survival Gear You Should Bring in the Event of a Flood
-Water (at least a 3 day supply)
-Food (at least a 3 day supply)
-Hand Crank Radio
-First Aid Kit
-Cell Phone with Charger
-Copies of Personal Documents (like medical information, insurance policies, Birth Certificate )
-Pet/Baby Supplies (If Applicable)
-PFD’s (Life Vests Preferably)
-Kayak Bilge Pump
While this may seem like a lot, much of it can be stored in a backpack or extra storage bags. Only bring what is necessary for your situation.
Inflatable Kayaks for Off the Grid
If you are living off the grid, particularly near a body of water such as a lake, chances are you have started to get the hang of fishing. There’s only one problem though. You can only fish around the perimeter of the lake which can be a very small area compared to the rest of the lake. Think of all the fish that you could be missing out on! Sure you can get a canoe but, you have to haul it around with you and find a way to transport it which can be a real pain, especially if there are no roads and you are in a relatively isolated area.
In comes the inflatable kayak and the problem is solved. Inflatable Kayaks are ideal fishing vessels and not just because they are portable. They also are great for sneaking up on fish. In many types of canoes and hard shell kayaks water often thumps against the side of the boat making noise and essentially announcing to all fish within that radius that you are there. Definitely not ideal. In an inflatable kayak you can go to all the areas in the water that you could not go on land and also be rather stealth about it as well by creeping up on unsuspecting fish. This could increases your catch rate by a significant margin. Kayaks like the Sevylor Coleman Colorado are ideal for this type of activity. When you are finished you can simply deflate it , fold it and pack it back up into its carrying bag. No back breaking heavy lifting and awkward maneuvering required.
What Should I look for in an Inflatable Kayak?
There are a ton of models that are out there and it can be very confusing, not to mention time consuming for the average user to mull over all the options. To clear all the clutter you should ask yourself one question..
What are you using it for?
Is this going to be used for emergency just in case scenarios or are you planning on getting more use out of it? Chances are if you are an adventurous family you will be using it more often than not for recreational purposes. Could you really buy something like this and not play with it? So things to consider in either case is how important is on water performance? How far do you plan on paddling? Where are you going to paddle? If you are looking for more performance based inflatable kayaks like the Advanced Elements AE1017 they will end up costing you more money because of the quality materials used. If you plan on having a more recreational kayak or one for strictly emergencies the Sea Eagle SE330 is a good cheap model made with quality materials.
Either way you want an inflatable kayak that can be durable, hold a good amount of equipment (look at the maximum Capacity rating of the manufacturer) and one that is stable and sturdy in the water. Here is a cool guide on choosing the best inflatable kayak: https://theeliteproduct.com/best-inflatable-kayak/
Inflatable Kayaks can become one of your best friends in survivalist conditions because they give you additional safety and access when conditions get tough. They are built to be durable, light, transportable and space friendly and ready when you need them.
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