Top 20 Best Kayak Accessories for Your Adventures

Kayaking was initially meant for fishing and hunting. The Eskimos created kayaks made from whale skeletons and seal-skins so they can hunt and fish. Nowadays, kayaking is also done for sports, leisure, or tourism. The shape, design, and accessories affect how enjoyable the experience would be for you. As such, you need to make sure you choose the best kayak accessories for both safety and fun.

When it comes to choosing, you have to consider a few factors. First, you must think of transportation and storage—are these things easy to tote around? Second, the accessories you choose must improve your kayaking experience.

We researched the top products on the market to find some of the best accessories for every kayaker, whether they be new to the activity or someone more seasoned or a stress-free experience. 

We also spoke with experts and asked them to share some of their top recommendations. There’s plenty to choose from we have curated a variety of accessories, which many experts say are essential to kayaking.

1. BackSak Waterproof Backpack

Best kayak accessories

BackSak’s Waterproof Backpack is designed from 500D PVC and has sturdy welded seams. It has a capacity of 35 liters. The padded back support and sternum clip provides comfort and helps relieve pressure. The straps are cushioned and adjustable according to the user’s desired length. There are also inner zip pockets, outer splash-proof pockets, and D-rings for all your important tools. Bring all your gear for your kayaking trips without fear of getting them wet or lost.

PROS

  • Waterproof either way you close it. 
  • Protective pockets can be zipped to keep your valuables safe and wet-proof.
  • Comfy and convenient due to the padding and adjustable straps.
  • The reflective patch makes it visible in the dark.
  • The bag floats in water.

CONS

  • Weighs almost 3 pounds and is quite heavy.
  • The shoulder straps are not too sturdy.
  • Water can seep through the zippers in the outer pockets.

2. Hot Seat Kayak Seat

This product by Surf to Summit makes sea kayaking a more comfortable experience. You don’t need to purchase separate accessories such as block foam, glue, and sandpaper. All you have to do is remove the backing underneath the seat and place it firmly in the cockpit. This also helps foster proper posture and comfortable paddling.

We recommend this product for those who like long and leisurely kayak rides. It provides you with ample cushioning from the hard plastic of the kayak.

PROS

  • Holds securely in the cockpit.
  • Sturdy since it is made from thermal-molded foam.
  • Provides comfort for a more leisurely kayaking experience.

CONS

  • Adds a few inches of height so the space might feel tighter.
  • The mild foam is too soft and loses its shape easily.
  • Not reusable. Since it is held securely in place, once you remove it, you have to dispose of it.

3. INNO Board Locking Roof Carrier

This roof carrier is suitable for 1 kayak or 1 canoe. The materials are made of rubber coated stainless steel cable strap, which makes it slip-proof and durable.

The universal mounting system fits most factory racks, whether they are round or square. You can easily load your kayak via the floating strap system and securely tighten it with the ratchet mechanism. Additional protection for your kayak is provided through a set of locks attached to it.

PROS

  • Keeps your kayak safe and secure as you travel.
  • The large lever lets you mount the kayak easily.
  • You can dry the kayak as you drive.
  • You can use the rack for canoes, wind surfboards, or longboards.
  • Doesn’t look bulky or unusual even if you are not transporting anything.

CONS

  • No spacers or foam blocks included.
  • Does not fit certain sizes of kayaks.
  • Does not work with low profile cross bars.

4. NRS G/flex Epoxy Adhesive Kit

This is a handle tool for emergency repairs on your kayak and is one of the best for filling in holes. You can also use this for other materials such as shoes and bags. It is always a good idea to bring a repair kit wherever you go.

PROS

  • Powerful and holds strongly.
  • You can fill in holes and cover them with tape. The water will not seep in through the repaired hole.
  • The G-Flex function works very well with thermos plastic adhesion.

CONS

  • Emits a bad odor.
  • The result is not transparent.

5. Marineguard Fiberglass Epoxy Resin

This product is made from polyamide epoxy system. You can use it to hold metals, wood, plastics, fiberglass, concrete, stone, Kevlar, and tile. This fiberglass epoxy resin is specifically tailored for marine use such as building and repairing boats and protective equipment with high quality coating.

PROS

  • Has a glossy finish that doesn’t affect the aesthetic look.
  • Cost-effective because it is sold by the gallon.
  • Comes with a dispenser for a no-mess use.
  • Great consistency.
  • Dries fairly easily.

CONS

  • Viscosity may be affected by temperature. You need to heat it to get a thinner viscosity.

    Warning: Do not expose to direct flame.


6. Gel Kayak Seat Cushion

TekPad provides cushioning with lightweight pressure and fluidized gel. The gel remains stable even at varying temperatures. The non-skid bottom also stays put even when you move a lot. You can even use it at home or in the office.

PROS

  • Removable – you can wash it or air it out to dry.
  • The gel adjusts with the temperature.
  • Lightweight and portable. You can fold it into a 13 x 8 and bring it anywhere.

CONS

  • Since it is made from gel, it may not provide enough cushion for heavier people.
  • May feel uncomfortable after an hour or so of use because of the gel that molds into your butt shape.

7. ONYX MoveVent Life Vest

This life vest has a bubble foam inner back and mesh for the lower back part. The zippered pockets are also expandable. The reflective material is SOLAS grade quality, which makes it highly visible even in water. The shoulder pads have built-in neoprene comfort pads.

This product is approved by the US Coast Guard as a Type III Approved Life Jacket and can also be used as a personal floatation device. However, it is still highly recommended that you know basic swimming techniques to ensure survival.

PROS

  • Comfortable to use due to the padding.
  • The mesh allows water drain, so it does not become heavy and pull you underwater.
  • The zippers make it easy to wear and remove.
  • Lightweight and comfortable to use.
  • Fits perfectly provided that it is adjusted correctly.

CONS

  • Needs to have more adjustment straps for more security.
  • The zippers are made of cheap plastic.

8. Fox 40 Sonik Blast CMG

This whistle emits a very loud pitch (120dB) without needing too much effort from the user. It has a non-corrosive stainless steel split ring with a tension-release breakaway lanyard. It is very handy in emergencies such as disaster management, rescues, and searches. You can also use it as a safety tool or as a regular whistle for sports events. It functions well in wet or dry environments.

PROS

  • Handy and safe. It can be used in the water and is pea-less.
  • Very loud and audible sound without too much blowing effort.
  • Has soft rubber for the mouth, so it doesn’t slide.

CONS

  • The pea-less whistle makes it high pitched yet the loudness does not resonate. Sounded more like a dog whistle. 

9. ABN Universal Kayak Carrier

This practical carrier allows you to transport your kayak, paddleboard, canoe, jon boat, or float mat. It is made from strong anodized steel that makes it durable yet lightweight. The 9.5-inch tires are easy to inflate and allows it to roll easily even on rough terrain. The bumper pads prevent your vessel from being scratched on dented.

A 12-foot tie down strap helps secures your vessel. You can also easily load your kayak using the spring-loaded kickstand. The carrier is convenient when it comes to transport and storage. This is very handy for people who like to kayak alone.

PROS

  • Can carry up to 200 pounds of equipment.
  • Portable and convenient to use and store.
  • Makes it easier to transport your vessel and gear even on rocky terrain, woods, and other rough areas.
  • Keeps your vessel safe and secure.

CONS

  • Since it only has two wheels, you cannot set the vessel straight. Equipment that you place on top of it will slide.
  • No extra straps provided.
  • Wheels are too small for larger vessels.

10. Malone Auto Rack System

This kayak storage rack system is powder coated so you can store your kayak indoors or outdoors. It has 2 sets of J-style hooks that are steel padded. Foam stacker blocks protect your kayak from scratches and dents.

Its eight frame levels provide perfect placement for your vessel. The storage rack system can hold up to 250 pounds of load and up to 3 boats. It is best to store your kayaks upright, so it dries easily and retains its durability.

PROS

  • No more storage clutter. Stock your unused kayaks upright whether indoors.
  • Durable and comes with a lifetime warranty.
  • Easy to assemble.

CONS

  • It is freestanding so one loud swoosh of the wind can bring it down.
  • Does not come with straps to secure the kayak.

11. Kayak Skeg Tracking Fin

This kayak fin decreases water resistance by “dividing” the water as your kayak passes. The material is made of PVC and can be attached using the provided glue. This should help you glide easier and enable you to move faster on water.

PROS

  • Easy to attach with screws and PVC glue.
  • Guides your boat and tracks straight on the water.

CONS

  • No instructions included.

12. Airhead Anchor System

This anchor system is designed for personal watercraft such as boats, canoes, sailboats, inflatable boats, and float tubes. It comes with a 25-foot long marine-grade rope. Fully portable and can be stored in its handy nylon storage case. It weighs 3 1/3 pounds and has a 4-fluke folding anchor that holds in sand, gravel, rock, or mud.

PROS

  • Portable and can fit under boat seats, in PVC compartments, and storage containers.
  • The durable storage case has padding that protects the anchor system.
  • It holds your boat steady to keep it from drifting away.

CONS

  • The anchor is too light to hold heavy vessels, especially during stronger gusts of wind.

13. Seattle Sports Paddlers Bilge Pump

This pump is designed to keep the bilge of your kayak dry. The pump has a comfortable and easy-grip rubber handle. The high-visibility neon yellow color contributes to safety. You can also add a hose to the output valve, so it directs water away from the boat.

PROS

  • Portable and convenient. It weighs only weighs ounces and measures 21 inches.
  • It floats on water.
  • Works with muddy, sandy, and salt water.

CONS

  • Too large for small boats.
  • Does not come with a hose.
  • Not recommended for moving around, as the umbrella will fly inverted due to the wind. 


14. Waterproof Pouch

This triple seal waterproof pouch works well even at depths of 10 meters or 32 feet. The straps are adjustable so you can attach it to your waist, carry it around your shoulders, or wear it as a cross-body bag. It is large enough to fit an iPad mini.

PROS

  • It floats on water even when filled.
  • Keeps gadgets and other valuables safe even under water.
  • Large enough to hold plenty of valuables.

CONS

  • You have to make sure to remove all air inside the pouch for it to work. The air bubbles cause the seams to open when submerged.

15. WateLves Water Shoes for Men

These quick dry shoes for men are great for athletic activities such as kayaking, surfing, and hiking. The rubber outsole comes with a unique pattern which provides increased friction and traction to prevent slipping.

The seven holes underneath ensure that the water flows out of the shoes. The shoes are flexible, have thick foaming, and proper arch-support. The thicker toe caps provide more cushion and comfort for your big toe. 

The fabric is made from fabric that is breathable, smooth, fine stretch, and ultra-thin. Since the fabric is non-mesh, sand won’t get inside the shoes.

PROS

  • Breathable fabric, which dries easily.
  • Fashionable yet practical to use.
  • Elastic and convenient.
  • The thick sole and arch-support provide protection against rocks and hard terrain.

CONS

  • Small shoe sizes.
  • The rubber sole emits an unpleasant smell.

16. ALEADER Water Shoes for Women

These shoes are made of fabric with a durable upper air mesh for breathability. The rubber soles and solyte midsole are lightweight yet durable. The Water Grain outsole provides great traction and prevents slipping even on wet surfaces.

The ComforDry sockliner offers a drier, cooler, and healthier shoe. Its FluidFlow technology allows water to drain from the shoe.

PROS

  • Secure fit.
  • Breathable comfort.
  • The rubber traction pods are placed strategically at high-pressure points for more slip-proof protection.
  • The engineered mesh makes the fabric breathable yet durable.

CONS

  • Not recommended for hiking. Rocks may stick to the spaces between the rubber soles.
  • Smaller shoe size.
  • The soles are too thin.

17. Kayak Scupper Plug Kit

This scupper plug kit ensures that you’re your kayak stays seaworthy. It plugs into holes that measure about ¾ inch to 1.5 inches. It fits most brands of kayaks and paddleboards. You can purchase it in sets of 4. It is made from durable rubber. The ropes allow you to remove the scuppers easily.

PROS

  • Takes out the guesswork when fitting plugs into holes.
  • Since it is made of rubber, it is easy to plug in.

CONS

  • Not recommended for smaller holes as the rubber is too hard to fit them in.

18. Deeper Smart Sonar PRO

This portable wireless fish finder is a great companion for fishing trips. Sync it with your tablet or smartphone and view underwater activity. You will receive vital information such as fish location, water depth, bottom contour, underwater structure and vegetation, and water temperature.

It is compatible with iOS or Android gadgets, and does not require a data connection to work. You can use this for all types of fishing: ice-fishing, freshwater fishing, and saltwater fishing. With the Boat Mode, you can create Bathymetric maps and analyze them using Lakebook on your PC.

It allows you to adjust the sensitivity, alarms, color displays, and fish icons. Lastly, this device can reach depths of up to 100 meters or 330 feet. You can have access to real-time maps and unlimited data history.

PROS

  • Easy to install. No need to drill, use wires or batteries.
  • Portable, light, and convenient.
  • Switch the scan from narrow to wide and find fish easily.

CONS

  • Disconnects frequently.
  • Not recommended for deepwater fishing.

19. Premier Kayak Paddle Splash Guards

These paddle guards greatly reduce drips and splash backs from your paddle. The unique design lets you hold water on the upstroke, and release water on the down stroke. Fits most paddle sizes.

PROS

  • Better than using just drip rings.
  • Keeps your hands and lap dry due to the reduced backsplash and drips.

CONS

  • Does not come with an instruction manual.

20. Shoreline Marine propel hood Trunk tie-down loops

These tie-down loops help keep your gear attached firmly and safely to the trunk. The product is made from heavy duty nylon webbing.

PROS

  • Easy to use and easy to attach and detach.
  • Large enough for heavier equipment and fits most trunks.

CONS

  • Not too durable and long-lasting.

F.A.Q About Kayak 

To help you decide on which items to purchase for your kayak gear list, here are some FAQs to help you out.

1. What are the different types of kayaking?

There are sit-on-top kayaks which is often recommended for beginners. They are more stable due to the wider berth. The whitewater kayaks are shorter because they are designed to maneuver quickly in swift waters.

Touring kayaks are for larger bodies of water such as seas and oceans. These are much longer than whitewater kayaks. These kayaks also glide better through waves, but has some degree of difficulty when it comes to maneuverability. The type of activities you do will determine the kind of accessories you’ll be needing.

2. Is it difficult to learn kayaking?

Learning to kayak can be quite challenging depending on which type of water you want to try. Most people opt to go fishing with kayak. For beginners, it is best to attend training with a qualified instructor so you’ll learn the basics and safety precautions, before you actually head out and grab a few cool kayak gadgets.

3. What else do I need besides a kayak?

Kayak accessories are important, of course. There’s plenty of these on eBay, where you’ll easily find paddles, personal flotation devices, emergency tools, and spray skirts. Those are the basic equipment that you need. If you are a woman looking for the best kayak and accessories, we have it covered in this article.

If you are going fishing, you need to purchase some kayak fishing accessories as well.

4. What are the recommended kayak gear and accessories that I should bring?

Again, it depends on the kind of activities you plan on doing. You should always bring the basics, of course. Make sure you have a waterproof bag or a kayak fishing crate to place your belongings in. Other essentials include a first aid kit, something to shield you from the sun, and a decent food supply. Everything else would depend on your own personal needs. Remember, the lighter you travel, the better.

5. Where can I find kayak supplies near me?

Doing an online search would be your best bet. There are plenty of online sports stores catering to beginners and pros when it comes to kayaking. If you have a Dick’s Sporting Goods branch near you then you’ll be sure to find more than your basic fare there. You can also visit West Marine’s website and choose from a wide range of accessories. Kayak accessories are also available in Walmart.

Important Tips

Now that you have purchased your kayak, and have made a short list of what accessories you need based on our provided list, here are a few other tips to keep in mind:

  1. Transporting the kayaks – If you normally travel alone, make sure you have sturdy kayak carts. These help in transporting the kayak easier even without help. Check out our reviews on the best kayak roof rack to help you transport your kayak with ease.
  2. Storage – You need to have proper storage your kayak as simply stowing it wherever there’s space can damage its build. Keep your kayak upright, so it dries easily. 
  3. Permanent or temporary accessories – There are accessories that need to be screwed or those that are only temporary. The key thing to remember here is travelling light helps you move faster. Only carry the essentials.
  4. Emergency supplies - While kayaking is a relatively safe sport, there are certain things that you still cannot predict. It is always best to pack away a full emergency supply pack. You may never need it yourself, but those travelling with you or around you might!

CHECKLIST FOR YOU

To help you choose which accessories you should get, we have compiled a list of "must brings" for 4 different types of scenarios. We highly recommend you to look at the accessories that is listed in the Essential column. However, if you are looking to go for other kind of adventures, take a look at our other columns.

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed our 20 best kayak accessories in this article. To sum it up, these accessories will be very helpful when you go out kayaking as it will make your adventure more convenient and fun.

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