Pakpod - Deck Bag, Backpack and Paddle Float
The perfect deck bag, backpack and paddle float self-rescue device for your canoe or kayak.
The PakPod combines the functions of a Deck Bag, Backpack, and Paddle Float self rescue device in a new and unique way. No, this is not just a gimmick. The PakPod is an excellent deck bag, and we think it is the most functional paddle float you can get. You are doubtful? Well, read on. Also see this independent review click here.
The Secret that makes the PakPod work.
The PakPod comes with a separate webbing harness that attaches to the kayak (or canoe), and the PakPod attaches to the harness with two quick-release buckles. This arrangement makes it easy to remove the PakPod from the boat - or to reattach it. Without this feature, the PakPod could not work as a paddle float.
1. PakPod as Deck Bag.
The PakPod provides 2.5 gallons (10 liters) of secure and convenient storage for all the gear you need to have available while under way. All the seams are welded and are quite waterproof, and the roll-top closure is both convenient and secure. The roll-top closure also makes a handy grip so you can carry the bag. The flat surface that normally rests against the deck makes the PakPod easy to carry without getting in the way of your legs. On the boat, the PakPod provides a convenient attachment for a boating compass. The PakPod is 17" long, 11" wide and 5" tall (43 x 28 x 12 cm).
The PakPod works equally well on a canoe. On our 2011 Lapland canoe trip, the PakPod was my camera bag. Secured on top of a thwart, it provided easy access to my SLR camera and waterproof storage through rainy days and whitewater.
2. PakPod as Backpack.
D-rings on the sides of the PakPod make it easy to attach the backpack straps that are included with the new the PakPod, and the semi-rigid board that forms the top of the PakPod helps protect items inside the pack. Of course, the PakPod is completely waterproof as a backpack too.
3. PakPod as Paddle Float (self rescue device).
A good Paddle Float is:
- Easy to deploy. The PakPod is secured on deck and can be released from the kayak with one hand by releasing two quick-release buckles. There is nothing to inflate, and there is no need to locate anything below deck.
- Secure. The PakPod stays firmly secured to the kayak until it has been secured to the paddle. It is never free floating, so it cannot blow away. You can secure the paddle to the PakPod with one hand while holding on to the kayak.
- Effective. Because of its semi-rigid structure and domed shape, the PakPod always maintains its volume and buoyancy. With over 20 pounds of displacement it makes an effective outrigger to stabilize the kayak while the paddler climbs back in. Some weight in the bag is actually good because it makes the PakPod act as a counterweight and stabilize the kayak in both directions.
The "secret" that gives the PakPod its unique function is that it is not attached directly to the kayak. Instead, a webbing harness with quick-release buckles is attached to the kayak's deck rigging. The harness stays in place when the PakPod is deployed, so it is easy to secure it again when the rescue is completed. Another key detail is that the female part of the buckle that secures the paddle is attached to a semi-rigid board under the PakPod. The paddler can close the buckle with one hand to secure the paddle. The following pictures illustrate how the system works:
(see video: CLICK HERE)