What is packrafting?
In short, a packraft is an inflatable individual raft that can pack down to such a small size that it can fit inside a pack while backpacking. Once hikers reach a river, they can remove the raft from their pack, blow it up with the included inflation system, and let the adventure continue on the water. The boats do add some weight to backpacks since the raft, spray deck, paddles, and PFDs weigh roughly 8.5 pounds, but it is worth it. Hiking and rafting allow adventurers to see more terrain and cover more mileage while still traveling under their own power.
How do you inflate a packraft?
Before receiving our packraft, how we would inflate the boats in the backcountry? Would we have to pack in pumps with us?! Fortunately, that wasn’t the case and packrafts come equipped with an ingenious inflation bag. This bag is made of sil-nylon and has a threaded nozzle on one side. This nozzle screws into an accompanying valve on the raft so users can scoop air into the bag and then “squeeze” it through the nozzle into the raft. With practice, this technique doesn’t take long and skilled users can inflate the boats in mere minutes. Additionally, the inflation bags are very packable and weigh next to nothing, so it sure beats dragging an air compressor into the backcountry!
Post time: Apr-01-2019