Touring kayaking

Touring kayaking takes place along coastlines, on rivers, lakes and estuaries. If you aim to qualify as a tour kayaking guide, the first thing to understand is that the term “Sea Kayaking” (on the ocean) tends to get used because many touring kayaks are sea kayaks. But there are also kayaks specifically designed for touring:  sit-on-tops and certain rubber duckies for example.

Although all forms of the tour kayaking sport have much in common (such as capsize drills), it’s important to clarify the differences.

Types of touring kayaking

Our qualifications cover:

SEA kayaking – correct equipment, dealing with surf, rescues, sea conditions around our coasts, navigation & communication, sea-life spotting and risks,  and nautical weather and tides, shorthaul and longhaul sea trips, NSRI

SURF RIDING – correct equipment, operations at the beach,  surf conditions and dangers, managing groups in the surf, etiquette, surf sealife, rescues and recoveries

RIVER kayaking with sea kayaks – correct equipment, suitable routes in Southern Africa, swiftwater risks and rescues,  flow and river grading, expedition planning and logistics, wildlife spotting and dangers

ESTUARIES & LAKES in Southern Africa, correct equipment; using sea kayaks on open water sometimes far from land; weather wind and waves; flatwater risks and rescues; navigation; support craft

Given these differences we issue a “Sea Kayak Certificate” rather than “sea kayaking” with endorsements showing the specialities you have been assessed for.

Types of sea kayaks

Kayaks too differ in design, purpose and usability. The certificate endorsements will include mention of:

  • Sit-on-top kayaks
  • Wave skis
  • Inflatable canoes
  • Sealed kayaks
  • Full expedition sea kayaks

The kayaks used may be purely recreational, for beginners, or (at the other extreme) designed and equipped for self-supporting journeys over rough waters. The sea kayak guide must obviously be capable of leading, rescuing and supporting clients who may have little idea of what they are in for. Correct equipment and correct techniques for each type of activity are important deciding factors.

Technical Certificate

Other forms of kayaking include whitewater kayaking, wave-skiing, canoeing and canoe racing. If you have experience in these disciplines it will help you but the sea kayak is a vessel that requires specialised training and certification.

Normally we do a generic introduction to sea kayaking and then focus on specialities. The Sea Kayak Technical Certificate is a requirement for the Generic Adventure Site Guide qualification in this form of outdoor tourism.

Courses may take place at ocean venues, on rivers or on open inland waters. Sea kayak guiding is a very demanding adventure skill which requires a high level of expertise to ensure the safety of participants.

Your skills

When applying to us you need to say what interests you and state any experience you already have. We will advise on the best programme to follow. Our assessment process requires that you get experience of at least 21 days for entry level guiding. This needs to be on commercial or organised outings where the lead guide or organiser signs off that you assisted.

The normal requirements for GASG apply: once you have your Technical Certiicate, logbook and Wilderness First Aid Level 3, you may enrol to complete the Portfolio of Evidence (POE) for tourist guiding in the context of your sea kayak discipline.

The whole process should not take you more than 6 months. This would include any training course, your logged trips, and the the documentation of your POE. You may then go on to extend your qualifications with othe adventure skills.

Get hold of us now to discuss your ambitions!