Currents Explained

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Another thing that you need to watch out for if you’re going kayaking are ocean currents. Depending on where you are, they can either be a slight or a relatively important factor. You should always try to make sure that your trips will allow you to paddle with the current instead of against it, or that if you do have to paddle against the current that you have made plans just in case you get tired.

Currents are caused when the water is different temperatures. While we generally hear about the water temperature as though it is just one thing, that is not always the case. In fact, there are usually pockets or streams of ocean water that moves at different speeds.

You would think that eventually all the water in the ocean would smooth out to be the same temperature. However, that is not the case. In fact, it’s very likely not possible, due to all of the different factors that affect water temperature in the oceans. For instance, sunlight can definitely affect the water temperature in places. The result of this is that areas that generally get a lot of sunlight (usually around the equator) will have warmer water than other places.

Likewise, water that is near the polar ice caps or glaciers generally gets full of melt-water from this ice. The result is that that water ends up being colder than the water around it.

This causes the currents because of a very simple fact regarding water and air. That is, when air or water warms up the pressure increases. Air or water that has higher pressure than the air or water around it tends to move into the areas that have less pressure. As a result, warm water tends to flow around the globe. For that reason, we get the major currents.

You can also get smaller currents as a result of differences in water pressure and temperature. Not only that, but there are even some currents that are caused by the tides, and how water flows over certain areas when the tide goes up or down.

Make sure that you account for the currents wherever you plan on kayaking. They can either help you, or cause a lot of problems if you’re not careful with your planning.

Enjoyed Currents Explained? Share it with your friends so they too can follow the KayakHelp journey.

Share on Pinterest

Comments are closed.

Welcome! I’m so glad you are here :-) I’m Pete. I am the owner of I was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, I grew up kayaking, fishing, sailing, and partaking in outdoor adventures around the Great Lakes. When I am not out on the water, you can find me skiing in the mountains, reading my favorite books, and spending time with my family.