Canoeing PFD advice?

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Canoeing PFD advice?

Postby LSR » Thu Aug 27, 2009 4:53 pm

Pretty unique body of water. It looks like a river, but is actually a lake (Once part of the Red River, cut off. 36 miles long with absolutely no current. Flat and calm as can be.) Rowing crews from around the country come here during spring break.

We have the right numbers of adults, more than enough BSA lifeguards (4! We had great adults at the last summer camp.) and Safety Afloat for all adults as well as the hazardous weather training. I'm looking for advice on PFDs. My inclination is class III due to the calm nature of the river/lake (seriously-the only time I've seen a wave on the river was during hurricane Rita!) Any suggestions as to price/brand? I have a class IV that's a seat cushion with loop handles. Am I correct in thinking that type is the most practical class IV?
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Re: Canoeing PFD advice?

Postby biglou » Thu Aug 27, 2009 7:21 pm

I "googled" this subject and found this site to be pretty informative. This might be of interest to you. http://backcountrytc.com/_wsn/page4.html

I thought this might help you out. I would also check the Canoeing merit badge panphlet for suggestions.
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Re: Canoeing PFD advice?

Postby LSR » Thu Aug 27, 2009 11:04 pm

biglou wrote:I "googled" this subject and found this site to be pretty informative. This might be of interest to you. http://backcountrytc.com/_wsn/page4.html

I thought this might help you out. I would also check the Canoeing merit badge panphlet for suggestions.


Great site! I came across it when googling myself earlier. What I was hoping for was something along the lines of "...our troop really likes XYZ brand class III PFD's because...." or "...we really had bad luck with ...." Nothing like recommendations from folks who went before.
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Re: Canoeing PFD advice?

Postby alex gregory » Fri Aug 28, 2009 1:13 pm

From the G2ss:

Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs)
Properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation devices (PFDs) must be worn by all persons engaged in activity on the open water (rowing, canoeing, sailing, boardsailing, motorboating, waterskiing, rafting, tubing, and kayaking).

Only U.S. Coast Guard-approved equipment (types I, II, or III) is acceptable for use in Scouting aquatics. Ski belts are not acceptable. Scouts and unit leaders should learn which type is appropriate for each specific circumstance and how to wear and check for proper fit.

Reference: Safety Afloat, No. 34368 and in the Online Learning Center

Your Class IV PFDS are useful for a comfy seat cushion at the ball park, but I would never take one paddling. I prefer Class III, and I am very happy with my Stohlquist Drifter.
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