No matter if you’re floating down a class-five rapid, or are just paddling around in a kiddie pool, being prepared for a little watery adventure is never a bad idea. So we put together a quick list of essentials.
Did you think we’d choose anything different? But we have some specific guidelines for when we enjoy it. If we’re in a canoe or kayak on the open river, we like to wait until after we’re safely docked for the day to enjoy a beer. But if we’re chilling out by a sprinkler in the backyard? Beer is good company to have. And when choosing a beer, we err on the side of low-ish ABV and refreshment: just what you’ll find in River Trip, a refreshing pale ale that we brew with coriander and dry hop for crisp notes of citrus and melon.
Water reflects sunlight, making it twice as important to put on some sunblock when you’ll be spending most of the day out on the water.
No matter your bug spray of preference, it’s always better than having a black fly gnawing at your legs all day. In Maine, bug spray for summer is a must-have.
We’re leaving this one a bit more vague, because it varies depending on your activity. If you’re in your backyard, you’ll need different equipment than if you’re, say, heading down the Kennebec River. If you’re new to river tripping and are planning on doing anything more intense than bobbing in an aboveground pool, we’d highly recommend hitting up an outfitter and simply renting your gear—or taking a guided trip, for that matter. We’ve had some awesome experiences with guided trips, like when we went out rafting with the folks from Three Rivers, or when we went for a fish with the fine folks at Bethel Outdoor Adventures.
Our beer of choice for enjoying after a trip down the river not coincidentally happens to be River Trip.
Many outdoor adventures happen outside of cell phone range. So just be sure you pack at least the fundamental medical supplies in case there are any bumps, bruises, or scrapes along the way.
It cannot be stressed enough: bring some snacks. Whether that’s nuts or your favorite moose jerky (we do not have a favorite moose jerky, we like them all), you should be prepared to grab something to tide you over in between meals.
Just because there’s plenty of water around doesn’t mean you can drink it. A sealable, hardy canteen of some sort will always be put to good use on any outdoor excursion.
If you’re toting electronics of any kind, make sure to get yourself a dry bag. That way, an unexpected dip in the water will only get your clothes wet, not your precious electronics.