Get ready for adventure! Washington offers diverse waterways—perfect for paddlesports.
Before you head out, do you know what equipment you're required to carry by law or how certain water conditions may affect your ability to control the vessel?
Whether you kayak, canoe, go whitewater rafting or do yoga on a stand up paddle board, you need to know the laws and basics of boating safety. If you can't find a local paddlesports club offering a class, then try an online course.
No matter what – we recommend everyone take a safety course before paddling.The following two online courses are approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, a nonprofit organization that works to develop public policy for recreational boating safety. The paddlesports safety courses cover the laws and basics for your adventures on the water, a must for anyone looking to start paddling or refresh their knowledge.
The Paddle Ready app includes:
Real-time environmental coverage plus weather conditions for various paddling routes
A list of boating courses offered ACA
A float plan to complete and email to family and friends
Safety and rescue how to videos to keep their knowledge of paddling current
Washington Kayak Club www.washingtonkayakclub.org
Spokane Canoe and Kayak Club www.sckc.ws
Lower Columbia Canoe Club www.l-ccc.org
Vashon Island Paddlers www.groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Vashonislandpaddlers/info
Wenatchee Row and Paddle Club www.wenatcheepaddle.org
University Kayak Club www.students.washington.edu/ukc/wordpress
Sound Rowers Open Water Rowing and Paddling Club www.soundrowers.org/wp
Seattle Outrigger Canoe Club www.seattleoutrigger.com
Lake Washington Rowing Club www.lakewashingtonrowing.com
Washington Recreational River Runners www.wrrr.org
Paddle Trails Canoe Club www.paddletrails.org
Boeing Whitewater and Touring Club www.bewet.org
Seattle Sea Kayak Club www.seattlekayak.org
Olympic Peninsula Paddlers www.olympicpeninsulapaddlers.com
South Sound Area Kayakers www.ssak.org
North Sound Sea Kayaking Association www.nsska.com
Olympic Kayak Club www.olympickayakclub.com
Whatcom Association of Kayak Enthusiasts www.wakekayak.org
Seattle Canoe and Kayak Club www.seattlecanoekayak.club
Northwest Whitewater Association www.northwestwhitewater.org
Paddlesports include canoes, kayaks, stand up paddle boards (SUP), rowboats and rafts.
It is important to remember that most injuries and deaths result from ignoring the following four key risk factors:
BEFORE YOU GO
All paddlers are urged to boat responsibly to prevent accidents, minimize impacts, and avoid conflicts with other boaters. Following are guidelines to help you prepare before you head out on your paddling adventure:
ON THE WATER
|Gear and equipment|
|Cellphone - in a waterproof bag||Waterproof handheld VHF radio||Charts/compass/GPS - a handheld GPS can get you back to shore in the dark or fog||Whistle - attach it to your life jacket|
|Flares & air horn||Throw bag & rescue kit||Food & water||Flashlight|
|Dry clothes - in a waterproof bag||Repair kit||Towing system||Life jacket|