There’s nothing more wonderful than cruising through the clear blue waters or traversing the wild rivers on your kayak. Whether on the ocean or on the river, kayaking is a fun water activity that most people can enjoy. You can ride a solo kayak and have some alone time with nature, or ride a tandem kayak and revel in the beauty of the outdoors together with a friend or family member.

But before you pack up for this water adventure, there are a few things you need to secure to make it a comfortable and safe kayaking activity.

Take note of these must-haves for your kayaking adventure:

1. Kayak – The most essential equipment you’d need to secure is of course the kayak. As there are various types of kayaks to choose from, you need to first know what type of environment it will be used in and who will be using it. From there, you can choose the appropriate type of kayak to use.

2. Paddle – The type of paddle to use would depend on the type of kayak you’re going to use. Make sure you use the right one. Aside from the paddle that each of the riders will use, also consider bringing a spare paddle.

3. Paddle Leashes or Floats – These would be good to have to prevent you from losing your paddle in case your kayak rolls over. Paddle floats prevent the paddles from sinking, while paddle leashes are cords or cables that come in different lengths and wrap around the shaft of the paddle. With the help of these two you can still paddle your way back to shore or to dry land in case you tip over.

4. Personal Floatation Device (PFD) – Some states and cities require paddlers to wear a PFD when kayaking. The PFD is a life jacket that keeps the paddler afloat. This is a very important piece of equipment you must have when kayaking. No matter how good of a swimmer you may be, you still need to wear a PFD as you never know what might happen if you tip over.

5. Helmet – Like the PFD this is a safety equipment that will protect you from any injuries in case the kayak rolls over or hits something. This is usually not required for sea kayaking, but is a requirement when white water kayaking and is advisable for surf kayaking.

6. Spray skirts – These are used to keep water out of the kayak. They are waterproof covers that fit around the kayak’s cockpit and have an elastic opening for you to fit in. These are useful during the winter when you don’t want to get icy cold water in the kayak, or when you’re river kayaking and it’s possible for water rapids to fill your kayak with water.

7. Bilge Pumps or Sponges – These are needed to get water out of the kayak and are necessary if you are not using a spray skirt, though some still opt to have these in their survival kits even if they’re using spray skirts. These are proven to be very helpful for sit-in kayaks which have a hollow cockpit, but can also be used for a sit-on-top kayak .

8. Throw Rope – You never know what might happen during your kayaking adventure, so it’s always best to prepare for any untoward incident. A throw rope is an important tool to have in case of emergency. This can be used to pull someone out of a dangerous situation. Just make sure not to tie it to your kayak, to prevent accidents of getting tangled with it.

9. Dry Bag – You’ll need this to store important items like food, an extra pair of dry clothes, a mobile phone, your camera and survival kit.

When going out for an adventure, it’s good to always be prepared. Whether going on a white water or an ocean kayak , make sure you have these nine must-haves for a safe, comfortable and enjoyable water adventure.