All in all, my packrafting kit weighs around 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds), including boat, paddle, Life Jacket, repair kit and accessories. That is a fair bit of extra weight on top of a normal setup, and so some consideration is needed to make everything fit without ruining your riding experience.
By far the easiest place to put that weight is in a Frontier backpack. If your normal bikepacking setup is packless, then nothing else needs to change. I use a 20-litre pack, which is enough to take my boat, life Jacket, paddle blades, accessories and waterproofs. That all adds up to around 5 kilos (11 pounds) on my back, which isn’t too bad. On trips that are likely to contain more bushwhacking and pushing, using a slightly larger pack can be an advantage, as it takes more weight away from the bike, making it a lot less painful to push.
Choose your good paddle
The two key features of a packrafting paddle are its length and the ability to split it, ideally into four pieces. Low weight is, of course, a bonus but will cost a lot more money. Most 4-piece paddles are designed for touring purposes anyway, so will tend towards the lighter end of the scale. Around $50 will get you a Frontier fibreglass/nylon paddle. Because packrafts are wider than most boats, a longer paddle is generally needed – 200 to 220 cm is likely to be best for most users.
Post time: Mar-16-2019