Kayaking Technique Forum

Find advice on all aspects of kayaking and using small boats on big water

Paddle float rescue

I am a beginning kayaker and an occasional participant on this bulletin board. When I bought my kayak I took some lessons that included the usual swimming pool self rescue and eskimo rescue techniques. We also did some lake paddling and paddled in the Puget Sound. I decided to take to heart the admonitions by the veteran paddlers of this board to practice these rescues in the real world (almost). I went to the sheltered and realitivly "warm" waters of Quarter Master Harbor in the Puget Sound. I was greatly surprised with the amount of difficulty I had attaching my paddle and float to my kayak, while in my PFD and wet suit. That was in calm water! I don't even want to imagine the problems in the kind of seas likely to cause a capsize. My biggest problem was attaching my paddle to my kayak. My kayak has straps behind the cockpit to put the paddle in. These straps seemed like a good idea after reading posts about the paddle, in the bungies, sissoring in the waves. My deck is quite high (prijon kodiak) and while trying to buckle the paddle in, my legs would float up under the kayak and I would end up under the it. I guess I had a difficult time with the coordination necessary to kick my legs to keep them from going under the kayak and operating the far side buckle at the same time. Should I abandon the strap idea, or do I just need more practice or different technique? One bright spot in the day was a sucessful paddle float assisted eskimo roll. Perhaps I should spend my time practicing a re-entry and paddle float roll rescue until I develop an unassisted eskmio roll. Thanks for your advise.