top of page
Gear Recommendations
These are items Blackwater Paddle Club recommends for purchase.  Although you're welcome to choose whichever suit your individual needs, we have field tested these.  These recommendations are updated after each trip based on technological updates and financial investment.  We do offer rental packages to minimize your upfront costs.

Jackson Cuda 14' Kayak


This professional grade kayak is designed for high performance with the comfort needed for long expeditions thanks to the hi/low seat that allows for multiple seating options.  The hull design also features front, mid, and aft hatches for access to internal storage.  Combined with a large deck storage area behind the seat, you'll be hard pressed to overload this boat.  There is a fine line between speed and capacity when choosing a kayak.  This kayak is the perfact balance between the two as it provides a boat capable of reaching excellent cruising speeds and the ability to haul a substantial amount of equipment.


Length - 14'

Width - 30.5"

Weight - 80lbs

Capacity - 400lbs

Front Hatch - 16 1/2" x 11 3/8" (Oval)

Rear Hatch - 9 3/8" (Round)

Rudder Equipped for Better Maneuverability

$1,539 msrp

"Tacti-Cool" Milk Crate


I developed this "Tacti-Cool Milk Crate" as I couldn't find anything to really suit my needs.  I wanted something to be self contained and keep many of my camping items in one convenient package.  As such, I took a standard milk crate and applied MOLLE panels to each side.  This provided me with a solid foundation for mounting pouches as needed.   There are no links available for this item as it's truely custom.  I'll be happy to walk you through the construction of your own.


Nash Sub-Z Cooler


I got 7 days out of two gallon jugs in 95 degree temperatures on the St. Mary's River in May-2016!  Keep the seat cushion on for added insulation and protection against the hot sun beating down.  Despite putting two gallon sized jugs (Deer Park 4L water bottles) in this cooler I was still able to fit breakfast and entrees for a week in the cooler!  How can you argue with better than Yeti performance at half the price?

$130.00 msrp

Aquabound Manta Ray Paddle

Excellent quality paddle.  Lightweight, flexible, and more importantly it can be adjusted via the posi-lock system.  This allows you to dial in your paddle stroke and maintain your own natural movement.  Be sure to review paddle sizing guides on manufacturers' websites to determine what fits!  

$190.00 msrp

Stearns Manual Chest Pack

Highly reflective fully adjustable vest.  Large front zippered pouch is great for smaller items such as cell phone, chapstick, chewing gum, extra batteries, survival blanket, magnesium firestarter, Sea Dye, whistle, small flashlight, and ink pen.  At least that's what I put into mine!

$60.00 msrp

Katadyn Vario Water Filter

This water filter by has been put to the test!  I've filtered some nasty water through this and it tastes as good as what comes out of my tap despite the appearance of tea. The Katadyn Vario screws onto a standard Nalgene water bottle (wide mouth) and will fill within a minute even on [Longer Life] option which routes the water through a ceramic puck pre-filter.  

$75.00 msrp

Katadyn BeFree Water Filter

This water filter is an EXTREMELY lightweight, compact, fast-filtering, and convenient all in one package!  All you do is unscrew the cap (this contains the filter cartridge), dip the vessel in the water, screw the cap back on and drink.  This filter folds up small enough to fit into your pocket and weighs just 2 ounces.  The filter has a 0.1 micron filter that lasts up to 1,000 liters with a flow rate of 1 liter per hour.  

$40.00 msrp

Katadyn Base Camp 10L

Ever have a day OFF the water to rest your arms and find yourself out of water?  This is the solution!  Simply remove the cap (this includes the filter cartridge) and fill the vessel with water.  Once you put the cap back on the bag can be hung from a limb, ridge-line, tent pole, etc. which will facilitate it's gravity fed design.  This features a 0.2 micron filter that lasts up to 1,500 liters at a flow rate of 2 liters per minute and weight only 12.4 ounces.  This comes with a carry strap and has the option of becoming a camp shower with the purchase of the optional cap.  

$85.00 msrp

Yak Attack Visipole

Every boat needs a safety flag.  Yak Attack has made a great series of visipoles that have multiple ways to affix to your kayak (RAM ball mount, RAM rod mount, and Scotty Mount).  The top of the pole illuminates via an LED light for times when you face low-light conditions or want to mark your location on-shore for stragglers on the river.  You may have seen from the expedition videos how easy this pole breaksdown when going under deadfall or other low hanging obstructions.  What better way to show off your Blackwater Paddle Club Safety Flag than with this quality pole?

$91.00 msrp

Kelty Noah 12 Tarp


You'll be hard pressed to find a tarp better than the Noah 12 by Kelty.  This unit has 21 individual attachment points!  This design allows the tarp to be one of the most versatile to suit your environmental needs.  This tarp is lightweight and a great value.  Why pay $20 for a cheap, bulky, and heavy tarp from Walmart when you'll wish you had this one? 

$70.00 msrp

Skeeter Beeter Pro Hammock


Great hammock by Grand Trunk that incorporates a quality mosquito netting.  It takes minutes to properly set-up your individual campsite.  You will sway when the wind blows if you don't tie off to one side.  I also recommend using "Atlas Tree Straps".  This will hold big guys!  


$70.00 msrp

SnugPak Under Hammock Blanket


While tent camping is superb as is hammock camping.  However, due to the compression of one's sleeping bag underneath them will cause unexpected cooling of the body.  As such, you'll likely wake up with a chill even on 60 degree nights!  Snugpak has created an outstanding product to combat this issue by creating a small pocket of air beneath your hammock.  The Under Hammock Blanket attaches to the tree by way of a bungee cord on each corner and has inner bungee cords to keep the under blanket from slipping & sliding towards the head or feet depending on your shifting around at night.  You'll also be delighted to know the Under Hammock Blanket compresses to about the size of a volleyball and weighs in at 51 ounces.

$40.00 msrp

Atlas Tree Straps


These straps by Eagle Nest Outfitters make setting up your hammock go from minutes to a-minute! Efficiency in movement, expediency, and time management is paramount especially after a long day of paddling.  These straps are looped incrimentally for your hammock's carabiners to affix to.  

$30.00 msrp

Big Agnes Tumble-2 Tent

Weighing in at just over 3lbs this freestanding tent really provides ample space having a footprint of 90" x 54" and an interior height of 42".  Needless to say my 6'2" frame has enough room inside to not only stretch out but also have enough room to sit upright.  Combining the LED interior lights (takes 2 AA batteries) with several mesh pockets, you'll be sure to have space for all the creature comforts you desire.  This tent uses the widely adopted "external skeleton" design which reduces set-up/takedown times by requiring the support poles to be inserted into corner grommets then clips secure the tent body to them.  All in all it takes less than 5 minutes. 

$189.00 msrp

Snugpak Scorpion 2 Tent

Snugpak's Scorpion 2 tent weighs in at 5.5lbs and is very suitable for someone wanting a little more room than the Ionosphere.  The Scorpion 2's vestibule allows for smaller items to remain out of the elements while you rest effortlessly in the roomy interior.  Although this tent is erected in reverse (the shell if put up first then you insert the internal portion of the kit) it offers full protection from the element and sets up in minutes!  

$165.00 msrp

Snugpak Ionosphere Single-Man Tent

For those of us that enjoy hammock sleeping but long for the ability to roll around this single-man tent by Snugpak fits the bill!  It's very lightweight and compact.  It takes minutes to erect and provides a nighttime of comfort and protection from insects due to a full length mesh top.  This also helps ventilate the tent on those warm nights.  Although the floor is rather thin compared to a traditional tent it still keeps the moisture from seeping in overnight.

$140.00 msrp

Nemo Riff-15 Sleeping Bag

The Nemo Riff-15 offers a great night's sleep with plenty of room for people with broad shoulders.  I've struggled finding an affordable, compact, spacious, and warm sleeping bag that that suits all my needs.  Well this one does!  I opted for the "long" option which costs about $20 more but well worth it over the long haul.  Weighing in at only 2lbs 9oz with a fill weight of 1.9lbs of 800 down this combined with the torso vents really allows you to effortlessly adjust to a wide range of temperatures.

$300.00 msrp

Kelty Cosmic 40 Sleeping Bag

Weighing in at under 2lbs this 40 degree Kelty Cosmic sleeping bag is tough to beat.  It comes with a very stuff sack and packs down to about the side of a volleyball.  I pair this with a sleeping bag liner which adds an additional 25 degree protection from the elements.  

$130.00 msrp

Klymit Static V-Luxe

If you want good rest you must get some form of ground padding or insulation.  For years I used the USGI bed roll which was very effective at insulating the underside of my body while providing some cushion.  However, this inflates/deflates using two twist-secure mouth pieces with an overall thickness of about 3".  The overall size is 76" x 30" and weighs in at 27 ounces.  With an R-Value of 1.3 you'll be assured any compression of your sleeping bag will be compensated with this.  It rolls up to about 4"x 8" and comes with a cover bag to keep it free from snags.

$79.96 msrp

Sleeping Bag Liner

Add this to a medium-weight sleeping bag to create a sleeping system that can be customized to your environmental conditions.  This Sleeping Bag Liner by Sea-To-Summit does just that by adding an additional 25 degree of protection against the elements!  Simply add or remove to adjust to your needs.  

$65.00 msrp

Paddling Gloves

These are pretty straight forward.  You better get some gloves.  I've had the same pair for over two years having logged about 400 miles over the course of a month on the river.  Keep in mind, your arms, shoulders, and hands are your propulsion system.  Blistered hands will ruin your trip. 

$16.00 msrp

Paddle Grips

Not as mandatory as paddling gloves, these paddle grips by Yakgrips make your experience more enjoyable.  I've had the same pair for over two years having logged about 400 miles over the course of a month on the river.  They need replacing now as they've faded and stiffened up a little due to exposure.  Keep in mind, your arms, shoulders, and hands are your propulsion system.  Blistered hands will ruin your trip. 

$20.00 msrp

Kayak Leash

Why spend an hour or two making something out of paracord when you can pony up eight bucks and get a quick disconnect paddle leash by Shoreline?  You might not think you need it until you're in the rear and your paddle goes in the drink.   

$8.00 msrp


Nothing keeps the skeeters off of you quite like this!  Add a few extra fuel canisters & scent pads and you'll be ready for the next expedition!

$30.00 msrp

Bug Jacket

This lightweight design by Coghlan's is a great choice for keeping bite free. They do rip easily to be mindful when wearing them.

$15.00 msrp

Bug Pants

This lightweight design by Coghlan's is a great choice for keeping bite free. They do rip easily to be mindful when wearing them.

$12.00 msrp

Nalgene Water Bottle

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate...  I carry three of these wide mouth water bottles by Nalgene one being a 64oz model.  You don't have to buy Nalgene but saving a dollar or two only to learn the threading is different and your water filter won't screw onto it will only cause you misery.  Visit our merchandise page and pick-up a custom Blackwater Paddle Club version.

$18 msrp

Stainless Steel Cup

This stainless steel cup by Olicamp fits perfectly in my Jackson Cuda 14' kayak's bungee loop between my seat and the center hatch.  Grabbing my water bottle is a breeze while underway and re-securing it is just as easy with one hand.  This cup also pulls double duty for my morning brew. 

$12.00 msrp

SealLine Dry Bags

Who wants wet gear?  Anyone?  Beuller?  Not me!  I pack various sizes, manufacturers, and colors based on what I put into them.  Speaking of colors why not think ahead and color coordinate your bags depending on what you put in them?  Get 2-3 more than you think you'll need you'll thank me later. 

$25.00 msrp

Mesh Bags

Nothing worse than mold & mildew on your clothing, good luck ever getting that smell out of them.  Pick up a few mesh bags for dirty clothes, tarp lines, extra cordage, etc.  

$15.00 msrp

Ultralight Single-Burner Stove


This is surprisingly one of the best pieces of equipment I've ever bought...  ever.  It weighs next-to-nothing, consumes less room than a pack of cards, and cooks your food!  I've used this single burner stove to cook all my breakfasts and a few dinners while on the expeditions.  This stove is EFFICIENT too.  I've finally changed over to my second fuel canister having cooked as estimated 30 meals.  For the price get a few.  

$6.00 msrp

Eating Utensils

I've used these cradling utensils by Coghlan's since I was a kid in Boy Scouts.  They work great, cut well, clean up easily, and pack tightly.  

$7.00 msrp

NDuR 6-Piece Essentials Cookware Mess Kit

If you're looking for a compact and practical way to cook your grub stop looking!  The NDuR 6-Piece Essentials Cookware Mess Kit delivers a condensed way to transport cookware comparable in size to a large cup (17 ounces in size), camping bowl (30 ounces in size), and a pot (51 ounces in size).  Each comes with a bowl-style lid that not only covers each but also doubles as additional cooking/dinnerware.  One of the best features is the lower vessels are all graduated to insure accurate mixing of contents in the event you decide to use dehydrated food items, no more "I think that's a cup of water" and ending up with grits that are either too tight or too loose!

$32.00 msrp

Mess Kit

It's the same Coleman Mess Kit set-up that I used and loved back in Boy Scouts.  It compacts well and is pretty durable.

$6.00 msrp

Coffee Maker

I've had this French Press coffee maker by Cafejo for several years now.  I really like the convenience of using a k-cup over instant coffee or a percolator using loose grounds.  Granted, there are more economical ways to make your morning brew.  With that said, you can buy optional attachments to accept ground coffee if you choose to.  However, you'll be hard pressed, no pun intended, to find a system more efficient, or easier to use.  Besides, the money savings are pennies.  Simply heat up your water, insert a k-cup, and press into the included catch cup!  

$30.00 msrp

Camp Chair


As you may recall I transformed my camping chair into FRANKENCHAIR while on the Satilla River!  Apparently the 300lb rating wasn't sufficient for a little rocking back & forth.  I upgraded to this 500lbs chair also by Ozark Trail.  I've not had any issues and it's HUGE!  I can sit indian-style in it comfortable to prove the point.  Also, this style/size chair is included in the [Camping Package] rental.

$25.00 msrp

Cam Jam

These little devices are worth their weight in gold!  I use these Cam Jams by Nite-Ize on my tarp as a quick and efficient way to adjust lines on the fly.  You're welcome to stay traditional and dust off those knot-tying skills, I'll be sitting by the fire sipping my beer watching.  I recommend at least 6-8 Cam Jams for your tarp (4 corners, 2 to widen the sides, and 2 for the ridgeline one on each end).  Nite-Ize also makes a plastic "micro" version that works great on the mosquito netting on the hammock, I use 4 micro Cam Jams for my hammock. 

$4.00 msrp

Reflective Paracord

Only one thing can beat the versatility of 550 paracord...  REFLECTIVE 550 paracord!  I use the orange reflective paracord on my tarp.  This allows for easy identification during the day (neon orange) as well as at night (imbedded reflective filament).  I haven't tripped over a guy-line since changing to this. 

$15.00 msrp

Pelican Case 1150

Need a quality case to keep your things protected from bumps, bruises, and waterproof?  Look no further than Pelican.  These 1150 sized cases fit perfectly in my kayak and are easy to keep track of thanks to the multitude of colors Pelican offers.  Color coordinate yours like you would your dry bags, I do!

$30.00 msrp

Please reload

bottom of page