Fishing and Sun Protection, often Overlooked
Summer is a fantastic time to be out on the water; kayaking, but all that sun exposure has some danger involved as well. Learn how to keep safe kayaking without sacrificing your skin!
Avoid the Heat of the Day (10am – 4pm, here in the southern US)
- The sun is generally at its most powerful when it is overhead, usually between 10am-4pm, and you’ll be more susceptible to burns during this period.
- If possible, try stick to early morning and/ or late afternoon kayaking trips. You’ll be more comfortable due to the cooler temps, also have less refracted light, and your skin will thank you for it!
- These Free Apps Will Help You Avoid Sunburn, which allows users to input their skin type and then see customized info on, taking into account the UV index and the time of day, how quickly they may get burned
- Wolfram Alpha Sun Exposure App
If you do end up kayaking during peak hours, plan ahead and make sure you have the gear you need to protect yourself!
Gear Up With Sun proof Sun Glasses, Clothing, Hats, Booties, Gloves, etc.
Sun proof clothing is clothing articles with tight, specialized weaves or dusted with certain additives to give them a specific UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating.
The UPF rating explains what fraction of the sun’s ultraviolet rays can penetrate through the fabric. If you have a shirt that boasts a UPF 50 rating, this means that only 1/50th of the sun’s UV rays can get through the fabric and reach your skin.
50 UPF tends to be the standard for sun protective clothing, so we suggest holding out for that rating and not settling for anything lower!
- There are some great sun protective clothing options for kayakers, and while there are shirts of all lengths and sizes, long sleeves tend to be best for sun protection, providing the most skin coverage.
- Long sleeves may not sound fun in the summer, but these pieces of clothing usually feature ventilation panels and moisture-wicking properties to keep you cool.
- PFG, NRS, H2Core, O’Neil etc.
Don’t Forget Your Extremities; Hats, Gators, Booties etc.
- Wearing a hat is key for protecting your lovely face from the sun’s harmful rays. Sun exposure can lead to wrinkles and premature aging!
- We suggest opting for a sun protection hat with a wide brim, which provides more shade cover. Also look for hats with adjustable drawstrings that can be tightened to ensure your hat stays atop your head when a gust of breeze sweeps down the river!
- There are outdoor sun hats for every style and preference, and most are affordable enough to fit in any kayaker’s budget.
- Cooling hats, Cooling Gators, Cooling boots
Stick to the Shade
- When possible, try to stick to kayaking routes that provide plenty of shade.
- Many tracks of river have enough tree cover to provide a decent amount of protection – make sure to take advantage of these opportunities when they arise!
Pack Extra Sunscreen (And Reapply)
- Of course, always pack plenty of sunscreen for your day out on the water. Whether you prefer lotion or spray, make sure you select a sunscreen with minimum SPF 30, SPF 50 recommended or higher and apply liberally!
- As always, make sure to re-apply every two hours or however often as is advised on the instructions (you’ll need to re-apply sooner if you go for a swim).
- Do NOT Forget the bottom sides, i.e. under chin, bottom of arms and legs etc.
Your adventures out on the water don’t have to be at your skin’s expense! Take the necessary precautions to protect yourself from the sun, and your kayaking trips will be sunny and stress-free!
Do you have any tips for sun safety while kayaking? Share your own tips in the comments!