Whether you’re coming up on a holiday, birthday, anniversary, or you just want to surprise your Dad because he’s the greatest, you’ll love this extensive collection of the 25 best kayak gifts for Dad.
Dad probably spends most of his time spoiling you and your siblings or taking care of clients at work. So it’s time that we repay the favor and help him upgrade some of his essential kayaking gear.
From head to toe, this gear guide has tons of ideas to help you surprise your Dad with an awesome kayak gift. It doesn’t matter the occasion, these gifts will be great for kayaking Dads year-round!
Photo by Olga Lyubkin via Shutterstock
- Why Do Dads Love Kayaking?
Best Kayak Gifts for Dad
- 1. NRS Paddle Wet Shoes
- 2. A New Carbon Fiber Kayak Paddle
- 3. A New Kayak PFD
- 4. A Kayak Cart
- 5. New Dry Bags
- 6. A Hard Phone Case
- 7. Paddling Gloves
- 8. An Emergency Communication Device
- 9. A New Kayak Spray Skirt
- 10. A Kayak Cockpit Cover
- 11. A Kayak Storage Rack
- 12. An Easy Load Kayak Roof Rack
- 13. Fishing Rod Holders
- 14. A Paddle Leash
- 15. A Paddle Float
- 16. A Bilge Pump
- and Sponge
- 17. An Upgraded Kayak Seat
- 18. A Full-Brimmed Kayak Hat
- 19. A Buff
- 20. A More Stylish Kayaking Shirt
- 21. A Kayak Light
- 22. A Kayak Knife
- 23. A Kayak Compass
- 24. A Kayak GPS Watch
- 25. A Bucket List Paddle Trip!
- Final Thoughts
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Photo by Elizaveta Galitckaia via Shutterstock
Lots of people love kayaking but, for a few reasons, Dads seem to love it even more. If you want to get your Dad an awesome kayak gift this year, it may help to understand his motivation first.
I don’t know about you, but the Dad bod is still a new phenomenon to me. It seems to be quite popular, but it doesn’t maintain itself and kayaking is one of the best activities for Dads to keep those guns firing as they may be getting a little less active in other areas.
A lot of the Dads I know spend most of their long days on their feet. That’s why it can be tough to convince them to go hiking or biking on their days off, but kayaking solves that problem with grace and ease.
They get to sit down while still exercising and enjoying some much-needed time in nature.
No matter how much they love spending time with their families, all Dads need a break every now and then. Kayaking is a great excuse to get outdoors and get some time alone or with buddies.
Compared to the plethora of other ways that Dad could be spending his free time, we think kayaking is a pretty darn good choice.
Even if Dad doesn’t love kayaking as a hardcore exercise or for the rush of running extreme whitewater rapids, he might love it for the casual chance to relax outdoors. Plus, his kayak probably has plenty of room for his favorite beverage on board.
They also provide insulation against wind, which makes them great for cold weather kayaking even if you stay completely dry. NRS is probably one of the best companies out there when it comes to paddle wet shoes, but Cressi and Neo Sport are also worth checking out.
2. A New Carbon Fiber Kayak Paddle
Carbon fiber kayak paddles are the lightest around and they’re also super durable if your Dad is into whitewater kayaking. There are many great kayak brands out there that make carbon fiber paddles, but for our money, we’d recommend this one from Wilderness Systems.
3. A New Kayak PFD
Now, it’s all about being safe and smart and if your Dad hasn’t upgraded his life vest in years, it’s a great time to help him do just that. If he’s an angler, check out some of the best kayak fishing PFDs, but if he’s just a recreational paddler, we’d recommend this PFD from NRS.
4. A Kayak Cart
That’s why Dad needs a kayak cart that he can strap his kayak to and roll it down to his launch point. He’ll also love the kayak cart when he can roll his kayak back to the truck once he’s worn out from a full day on the water.
5. New Dry Bags
SealLine and Sea to Summit are two of our favorite brands when it comes to making high-quality, durable dry bags that are built to last and actually keep the stuff inside sealed from the elements. Just take a second to read up on how to choose the right size dry bag for kayaking before buying your Dad this awesome kayak gift.
6. A Hard Phone Case
That’s why most seasoned kayakers and kayak guides we know keep their phones and wallets inside a hard waterproof case while they paddle. Pelican’s line of micro cases is the best in the business when it comes to keeping your phone, keys, and other small valuables protected while you paddle.
Paddling gloves are not just for keeping your Dad’s hands warm though. They’ll also help him maintain a better grip on his kayak paddle and protect his hands from drying out and cracking on long paddle adventures.
So get him an emergency communication device so that you can all feel a little better about his solo adventures. Some devices even allow short texts so you can keep in touch with Dad on his ambitious long-distance paddle adventures, but all will come in handy in case of an emergency.
9. A New Kayak Spray Skirt
To pick one out, you’ll need to know the exact dimensions of the cockpit in Dad’s kayak. If you don’t want him to catch you measuring it, sneakily find out which model it is and then look up the dimensions online and then match the skirt to the rim of the cockpit.
10. A Kayak Cockpit Cover
It seals the cockpit from unwanted dust and debris and can also keep nosy critters out if Dad stores his kayak outside during the winter. It will also improve his gas mileage if Dad likes to do a lot of driving with his kayak on top of his vehicle.
11. A Kayak Storage Rack
The answers to both those questions are probably no, so a great kayak gift for Dad is a rack that makes storing his kayak easier and more efficient. Check out something like this rolling two-kayak rack from RAD Sportz.
12. An Easy Load Kayak Roof Rack
That’s why Dad will love an easy load kayak roof rack that reduces how high he needs to lift his kayak and also supports the majority of his kayak’s weight when he’s ready to lift it all the way up onto the roof.
If your Dad keeps complaining that he’s spending too much time on the water rigging and re-rigging his fishing rod, get him one or two new fishing rod holders to encourage him to bring a few more rigged setups along on his fishing trips.
14. A Paddle Leash
This is one of those gift items that you’re never quite sure you need until you do. Rest assured, however, that Dad will be glad he has it if he unexpectedly capsizes in windy or wavy conditions.
15. A Paddle Float
The paddle float inflates and then is placed over one of the blades on your kayak paddle. Then, it essentially works as an outrigger to help keep Dad’s kayak stable as he climbs (or at least attempts to climb) back in.
16. A Bilge Pump
Because a bilge pump will stop being effective for that last little bit of water remaining inside Dad’s kayak cockpit, go the extra mile and pair this gift with an extra-absorbent sponge so he can really get his kayak cockpit dry when he needs to.
17. An Upgraded Kayak Seat
Give Dad a boost (literally!) with a more padded and comfortable kayak seat. We specifically love this design from Surf to Summit, but there are plenty of other kayak seats out there for you to choose from.
18. A Full-Brimmed Kayak Hat
We are, of course, proponents of wearing sunscreen when you kayak, but wearing a hat will reduce the amount you need to use and the number of times you need to re-apply while you’re out on the water.
19. A Buff
Buffs only used to be available in just a few colors, but now there is an almost endless number of designs and color combinations out there. So take your time to find a design that truly fits your Dad and his awesome personality.
20. A More Stylish Kayaking Shirt
21. A Kayak Light
These lights attach right to the bow or stern of your kayak and eliminate the need to wear a headlamp or do something silly like attaching a bunch of glow sticks to all the handles on your kayak.
22. A Kayak Knife
These knives attach right to the outside of your Dad’s PFD so that it’s always ready when he needs it. It will help him cut away any sort of line he or his kayak gets snagged on and can even help him cut away fishing line from downed branches if he’s picking up some trash on his paddles.
23. A Kayak Compass
It also features an adjustable hood that protects the compass when you’re not using it and prevents glare when you are.
24. A Kayak GPS Watch
Plus, some of these watches have a built-in fitness tracker that will allow Dad to track how far, how fast, and how long he paddles. That way, he can brag to all his buddies about that 5.6 mph top speed on his latest morning paddle!
Photo by reisegraf.ch via Shutterstock
Finally, there’s arguably nothing cooler than buying your Dad a paddle trip if he already has all the gear and expertise he needs to enjoy it. Better yet, buy a trip for the whole family so everyone can share in the love of paddling.
Where is that one spot that Dad has always mentioned he would love to paddle? Or maybe there are a few spots. Check out companies like 57Hours, which offer all sorts of guided adventures all over the world!
Photo by Olga Smolina SL via Shutterstock
Feed Dad’s passion for kayaking with one (or more) of these kayak gifts this season. He’ll never forget it and he’ll likely think about you every time he heads out on the water from here on out.
It’s never a bad time to be in the giving spirit. So whether you’re shopping for the upcoming holiday season or just at another random point in the year, we hope you’ve enjoyed this gear guide to the best kayak gifts for Dad!