Should I Avoid Kayaking In The Rain?


Kayaking is a thrilling and liberating outdoor activity, allowing you to explore the waterways, connect with nature, and get some exercise.

But what happens when rain clouds gather, and the sky opens up? Should you avoid kayaking in the rain, or is it an opportunity for a different kind of adventure?

At Cambridge Kayaks, we believe that kayaking should be enjoyed no matter what Mother Nature throws at you. If you’re looking for kayaks for sale, our range of stock suits a vast array of water types and suits all weather conditions, so you don’t need to worry about a spot of rain ruining your trip.

In this blog post, our team will explore the pros and cons of kayaking in the rain and provide some essential tips for a safe and enjoyable experience.

The Pros Of Kayaking In The Rain

1. A Unique Experience

Rain can transform your kayaking adventure into a unique and unforgettable experience.
Paddling through gentle rain showers can be incredibly peaceful and soothing.
The sound of raindrops hitting the water and the visual spectacle of rain rings forming on the surface create a serene atmosphere that’s hard to replicate on a sunny day.

2. Fewer Crowds

Rain tends to keep many paddlers away from the water, which means you’ll likely have the waterways to yourself.
If you enjoy the solitude of nature and the tranquillity it brings, kayaking in the rain can be a dream come true. It’s an opportunity to connect with the environment without the hustle and bustle of fellow kayakers.

3. Cooler Temperatures

Paddling under the rain can provide welcome relief on hot summer days. The cool rainwater can lower the temperature, making your kayaking experience more comfortable and enjoyable. It’s a refreshing break from the scorching sun.

4. Improved Water Levels

Rain can boost water levels in rivers and lakes, making for better paddling conditions.
Higher water levels can open up new routes and provide opportunities to explore areas that might be inaccessible in drier seasons.

The Cons Of Kayaking In The Rain

1. Reduced Visibility

Rain can significantly reduce visibility, making it challenging to navigate and see potential obstacles in the water. This can be particularly risky in fast-flowing rivers or areas with hidden hazards.

2. Increased Risk of Hypothermia

Getting wet from rain is one thing, but prolonged exposure to wet and cold conditions can lead to hypothermia, a potentially life-threatening condition. It’s essential to dress appropriately and be mindful of the temperature and wind chill factor.

3. Slippery Surfaces

Rain can make kayak launch points, docks, and landing areas slippery. Extra caution is required when entering or exiting the kayak, as slipping can result in accidents or injuries.

4. Gear and Equipment Concerns

Rain can damage some kayaking gear and equipment, including electronic devices, such as GPS or communication devices. Additionally, rain can cause corrosion and wear on metal components if not properly maintained.

Tips For Kayaking In The Rain

If you decide to go kayaking in the rain, it’s essential to be well-prepared and follow some essential safety and comfort guidelines:

1. Wear Appropriate Gear

Invest in waterproof clothing, such as a quality paddling jacket and pants. Make sure your gear is designed for kayaking to ensure maximum comfort and protection. Additionally, wear a personal flotation device (PFD) at all times.

2. Protect Your Valuables

Use waterproof storage solutions, like dry bags or dry boxes, to protect your personal items and electronics from rain and splashes. It’s essential to keep your essential belongings dry and safe.

3. Check Weather Conditions

Before heading out, check the weather forecast. Make sure you are aware of any storms or heavy rain expected during your kayaking trip. It’s safer to postpone or reschedule if severe weather is on the horizon.

4. Dress in Layers

Dress in layers to regulate your body temperature. This will allow you to remove or add clothing as needed to stay comfortable. Moisture-wicking fabrics are excellent for managing sweat and rain.

5. Maintain Visibility

Wear a kayak-friendly hat with a brim to help shield your eyes from rain. It’s also a good idea to use anti-fog coatings on eyewear to maintain visibility.

6. Plan Your Route

Choose a kayaking route that is safe and suitable for rainy conditions. Avoid routes with swift currents or challenging obstacles, as rain can make navigation more challenging.

7. Stay Informed

Stay informed about local waterway conditions and potential hazards. Rain can affect water levels and currents, so it’s essential to be aware of any changes in the environment.

The decision to go kayaking in the rain ultimately depends on your preferences, comfort level, and safety considerations.

While it can be a unique and rewarding experience, kayaking in the rain comes with its own set of challenges and risks. It’s essential to weigh the pros and cons, be well-prepared, and prioritise safety.