Ideally you won’t be in the water without your kayak but if the circumstances arise that cause you to be separated from your boat- you’ll be happy that you thought to prepare a Bail-Out Kit in advance.
Things to consider: It should be attached to your deck for easy removal or be worn on you or your PFD (inside your cockpit would be fine if the likelihood of capsize is small), it should be able to float on its own, not be too large and obtrusive yet still have the important items inside.
What to put in it:
- Foam to keep it afloat if it isn’t in a floatable container.
- Identification, important phone numbers, money, credit card
- Survival blanket
- Small first aid kit
- Signal mirror
- Power bars
- VHF radio/SPOT satellite messenger, EPIRB etc (if not already on your person)
- Anything else that makes sense to you i.e. fishing tackle if you know how to use it; a knife and whistle if they aren’t already located on your PFD.
- Waterproof deck bag like Seal Line’s Baja Deck Bag or Gaia Sports Tortuga Deck Bag
- Non waterproof containers like Northwater’s compact Turtle Back Deck Bag
- Wearable containers like Seattle Sports’ Aqualock Fanny Pack
- Hard cases like Pelican’s 1200 case.
*Further reading: “Sea Kayaker’s Savvy Paddler” by Doug Alderson. McGraw Hill Publishing.