Canoeing down the Peace River is an opportunity to immerse yourself in nature. From beautiful landscape views to the rocking of calm waters, you’ll gain a new appreciation for the area!

Preparation is key to a positive experience, though. Whether you’re embarking on a leisurely day trip with the Peace River Canoe Outpost or a more challenging overnight excursion, the right supplies ensure that you remain safe, so you can focus on enjoying yourself. 

Understanding Your Trip

On Peace River, canoes and kayaks are fun, active ways to see the sites and enjoy your surroundings. The items you’ll need depend on the length of your paddling trip and your group’s goals.

– Trip Length –

When planning your Peace River canoe trip, you’ll first need to decide on the duration of your adventure. 

  • Half-day and day trips are perfect for paddlers with limited time and/or limited experience on the river. Your packing list for short adventures will be the most simple, since you won’t be too far from services at any point. 
  • Overnight trips are a little more complex, and are a fantastic way to immerse yourself in Florida’s wilderness. You’ll need to bring camping gear and additional food and water, as well as storage containers for these items. 
  • Multi-day expeditions offer a chance to truly get off the grid. They require careful planning and meticulous preparation, and are best for more experienced adventurers. 

Don’t forget to check the weather before packing, too! We recommend avoiding storms completely, but if you do venture out when there’s a possibility of rain, it’s important to be prepared for weather.

– The Basics –

For any length of trip, you’ll need some essential gear to protect the members of your group from the elements. 

  • A Personal Flotation Device (PFD) for each paddler
  • One paddle for each canoeist, plus an extra just in case
  • Waterproof bags or containers to keep spare clothing, electronics, and food dry
  • Water shoes or strap-on sandals with good grip 
  • Clothing made from quick-dry or moisture-wicking fabrics are most comfortable to wear on the river. If you anticipate changing weather conditions, don’t forget layers and waterproof gear. 
  • A hat and sunglasses for sun protection
  • High SPF sunscreen and lip balm 
  • Insect repellent 

If you adventure with a tour group such as the one at Peace River Canoe Outpost, your guides will bring many of the crucial safety items from this list for you. You’ll be on your own for personal items like water shoes and appropriate clothing, though, so pack the items that are not included with your excursion.

– Food and Water –

Many guide-led paddling trips will also include food and water with the cost of the excursion, but always double-check if this is the case! And, if you’re planning to explore on your own, be sure to pack plenty of sustenance for your group. If you find yourself without access to nutrition or safe drinking water with no one to help nearby, a fun adventure can quickly turn dangerous. The following items will help you to stay safe and healthy: 

  • Water bottles and/or a hydration system 
  • Purification tablets or another method of purifying water
  • Snacks and meals with high energy content, such as almonds, trail mix, and granola bars
  • Cooking gear such as a portable stove and fuel, if you plan to heat your food
– Safety and First Aid – 

While no one expects a medical situation to arise, being prepared for one can prevent a situation from becoming an emergency. 

  • First aid kit with appropriate supplies for your group’s size
  • Personal medications 
  • A canoe repair kit, in case one becomes damaged 
  • Headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries, especially if you’ll be out after dark
  • Waterproof matches, a lighter, and/or a fire starter kit
– Shelter and Comfort –

There’s no need to bring camping supplies if you’re only planning to be gone for a couple of hours, but they are absolutely essential for paddling excursions that will extend overnight. 

  • Tent or hammock with a rain/bug net 
  • Sleeping bag, rated for the coldest temperature you expect to encounter 
  • Sleeping pad
– Leave No Trace – 

We respect the Peace River and want to maintain its beauty – and its wildlife – for many generations to enjoy! Bringing these items along will help you to minimize your impact on the ecosystem, and visitors who follow in your footsteps will surely be grateful. 

  • Trash bags (pack out your trash!)
  • Biodegradable soap and sponge for personal hygiene and dishes 
  • Toilet paper and shovel

Time to Paddle the Peace River!

As long as you pack appropriately and thoughtfully, we’re confident that you’ll thoroughly enjoy your time on the river. We hope you come back for many years to come.