Start with these items, comfort and warmth are what often determin extra cost.
(Type III- or V Rescue Jacket)- stay away from head pillows, and get one that lets you move through a kayak stroke or swim stroke without interffering with your natural motion.
- gives yo the comfort you need and protects your head. You can go with plastic or composite, expect to pay more for style points (-not always more protection points).
- Wait until you know what kayak your going to buy before investing in a skirt. This is the only one that spending more money truely is worth the beginner budget. You get what you pay for with skirts. $20 more equals three or four more years of use.
- You don't want to run out and buy the most exspensive paddle you can get. Your more likely to break or lose your paddle learning to kayak. Your choices are normally straight and bent shaft paddles. (Bent shafts or ergonomic paddles- help to keep your wrist bones in line- mostly it's a comfort thing- and it works.$$$)
6) Float bags
- Protect your investment (kayak), and help a brother out. ( Float bags make catching and retrieving an empty kayak easier.)
- Having shoes makes you a possible rescue or saftey member. No shoes- no going for help. Have fun chasing your kayak, bare foot boy.
- Dress for all day. Everyday is different, so dress for the weather and dress for a swim. Because you never know.
- This one is almost regionaly determined. We live in an area where if the snow's not meltiing the river's aren't running. Breathable or non-breathable, both are dry.
10) Nose plugs
- Because they work.