We’ve had this Spyderco Spydersaw in for a while at Unsponsored HQ. We love sharp things at Unsponsored HQ and sharp things arriving from the guys at Spyderco are always very welcome. We’ve been using various Spyderco knives both on and off the water for years and have found them to be top performers.
However this new arrival is a departure from the norm. It’s not a knife that has multiple uses, quite simply put it’s a monster of a saw with the prime purpose of cutting through tough material really quickly. Think boats, trees/branches etc.
If you are using a throw line on the river I firmly believe that you need to carry a knife capable of cutting the line you are using.
There are two schools of thought on how a knife should be carried. The first option is to have a knife stored in such a way that it does not create a snag hazard but still remains accessible. The choices on how this can be achieved is limited and really relies on using a pocket on your PFD. The second option is to carry a knife clipped onto the outside of your PFD. By doing this you are accepting that there will be an increased snag risk but the knife will be readily accessible. The other issue with knives that are mounted on the outside of your PFD is that it should remain secure until it is required to be used. Continue reading
This post has been rattling round my head for the last few months as I have debated on whether to put it out. A conversation with a couple of fellow paddlers has prompted me to make the post.
First things first the risk of being snagged or caught up in a strainer or similar is something that all paddlers need to think about and although the risk is minimal the risk still exists. Any kit that you wear has the potential of being snagged and all steps should be made to keep loops of tape, laces etc tucked away and out of danger. However I sometimes find that it is necessary or advantageous to have some pieces of kit on the outside of my PFD rather than in a pocket.
The FX PFD from Palm Equipment has been around in one form or another for years and has been one of Palm’s top sellers throughout its lifetime. In 2013 Palm took the FX and totally overhauled its fit and the material used.
The new FX has been such a success that it seemed to make sense to move things up a gear and develop a rescue vest using the same platform. Palm have done exactly this and have released the FXr in early 2014.
As well as making sure I have all the necessary safety kit (PFD, helmet, throw line, whistle, pin kit) I like to have a range of kit with me that can be used in emergency situations. If a trip were to turn into an epic it is possible that someone may have been injured and/or we could be stuck out in the middle of nowhere.
Therefore my kit centres around three key elements/purposes:
I like to carry a range of kit that will help keep me and/or my paddling buddies warm and offer a little shelter.
If someone gets injured I’d like to go someway to help patch him or her up.
I’d like to ensure that morale stays high.
I have to weigh all of these needs against what is practically possible and the weight I can actually carry in my boat. Regardless this kit needs to be carried in my boat or on my person and needs to be kept dry. I am currently using an Exped Cloudburst dry sack for the bulk of the emergency kit that I carry. It is based around a traditional roll top dry bag but it has straps so that it can be used as a rucksack. It has a volume of 15 litres which means it is big enough to hold the essentials but will still fit in the back of my Liquid Logic Stomper.
If you are running whitewater I strongly believe that all members of the paddling group should carry and throw line/bag AND know how to use it safely/effectively. I would also say that if you are carry a line you must also carry a knife that is capable of cutting it.
The choice of throw lines/bags is vast and although they may look the same there are some distinct differences that you must consider before selecting the right one for you. Continue reading