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Best Portable Fish Finder with GPS

When you are considering fishing as a worthwhile activity, among the important items to get is a fish finder. In fact, you have no excuse in this day to lack one in your fishing activities. In this article, we have outlined the best five on Amazon, as well as some tips and guidelines when looking for a finder.

Fish finder Editor rating Screen resolution Maximum depth readings
STRIKER 4cv 010-01806-00 4.4 480×320 830ft in salt water, 1750ft in fresh water
Humminbird 410210-1 G2 4.5 800×480 1500-2500ft
Garmin 010-018007-00 5cv 4.0 800×480 1,100ft saltwater, 2,300ft fresh water
Deeper Wi-Fi fish finder 4.4 800×480 260ft for wide angles, 2ft for narrow angles
STRIKER 4 GPS finder 4.5 480×320 1750ft salt water, 1,600ft fresh water

Garmin Striker 4cv 010-01806-00

The STRIKER series is very popular among fishing lovers, and this follows its example. It has an added advantage, however – the use of ClearVu technology that enhances GPS marking of your favourite fishing hideouts.

Coming with a user-friendly fish finder, it also uses a 3.5-inch colour finder, as well as having a built-in, highly sensitive GPS locator and scanning sonar from ClearVu. It also displays your speed data on the screen directly, to help you track speeds and distances of your fishing grounds.

The fish finder comes complete with a transducer containing CHIRP ClearVu (around 455/800 kHz) and CHIRP (about 77/200 kHz). 500W battery powers the transducer, and the equipment includes a built-in flasher.

The finder reaches a maximum depth of 830ft in marine environments, and 1750ft in freshwater environments. It has a high resolution in its display, reaching up to 480×320 pixels, so it is able to accommodate itself to varied conditions.

What we like

  • Great value for money – it comes with several features that are useful for anglers
  • The display is of very high clarity and works well in many conditions
  • You can mount the transducer in both trolling and hull motors
  • It is easy to use and mount
  • The depth measurements are accurate
  • It does not take a lot of space, so you can use it even in smaller boats

What we did not like

  • The screen of the transducer is small, so you may have issues with it unless you keep it near you.

Humminbird 410210-1 G2 fish finder

The Humminbird SwitchFire comes with a long legacy of excellence in sonar innovation, so this it is no secret why this is our pick. It puts you in total control of your sonar return appearances because of its two displaying modes that allow you to adjust to your specific fishing conditions.

You can also add details or remove them, such as putting in water depths and accounting for them, putting in turbulence and temperature data, even experimenting with lure presentations. It is all in your hands, simply by pushing a button.

The fish finder comes with GPS technology, with powerful and accurate Precision GPS and WAAS receivers in the system. This allows the finder to give you accurate positions within 2.5 meters. In addition, the HELIX series comes with an integrated frame and screen, which allows for a continuous surface as well as an ultra-slim bezel to enhance cooling and minimizing space.

This finder comes with a Smartstrike feature. Say goodbye to the days of overrated and tiring chases where you mostly end up with no catches – this technology enhances your fishing experience. By simply entering your parameter data, the finder will show youth results immediately, making you spend less hours on the chase and more time fishing for better results. The standard base map aids this further; the map foundations are on the Helix Series G2N and G2 models, as well as data from NOAA, LakeMaster and other sources.

What we like

  • The finder allows you to save and upload your fishing ground data, all at no extra cost
  • It has great value and performance
  • The screen is very clear, and even works in bright sunlight
  • Easy to use after some sessions

What we did not like

  • Because of all the features the product has, it is more costly than other finders in the market are.

Garmin 010-018007-00 5Cv – best affordable fish finder

Another highly sought after product within the STRIKER series of fish finders; it is available in three screen sizes, which we like. The product comes with a ClearVu sonar technology, allowing you to view your fishing grounds easily. The CHIRP sonar is of high frequency, and provides you with greater range of information and fish arches. It also gives you high quality, near-photographic images that have details of structures, objects as well as fish.

The interface is very good, giving you three buttons for maximum control. The finder also contains a waypoint map that gives easy views and navigation in addition to markings of fishing grounds and locations such as docks and stumps. Moreover, a built-in flasher allows you to view sonar data. This will particularly help anglers who fish in ice water or in vertical jiggling circumstances.

What we like

  • The model is affordable and still retains its good performance
  • The GPS is highly sensitive, so it is very good in terms of accuracy
  • The screen contains a compass tape for additional accuracy in direction
  • The graphics are of very good quality, allowing you to view fishing grounds in detail at a glance

What we did not like

  • The model lacks built-in maps, which is a disappointment for marking out areas quickly
  • When you are moving quickly on the water (more than 5mph), it cannot read the depth of the water

The Deeper Wi-Fi fish finder – most versatile fish finder

Unlike many models in the market, this fish finder does not require cellular data or internet charges – it simply uses Wi-Fi networks. In that case, it still retains easy portability, but has the added advantage of compatibility with both Android and iOS operating systems.

If you are searching for a fish finder that is versatile enough in all fishing conditions, this is your best bet. You can use it in rivers, lakes, ice fishing, shore fishing, kayaks, and riverbanks and even float tube fishing. In addition, it is compatible with both salt and fresh water grounds.

An additional unique feature of this finder is the use of bathymetric mapping systems. In fact, the sole portable sonar uses this GPS feature. All you need to do is create your map, and then do an analysis on your PC through Lakebook.

It also has the best range of connections compared to other models – up to a range of 330 feet. Any object up to 0.5 inches in size, contained in a water depth of 250 feet is eligible for marking. In addition, you also receive highly detailed information of the structure of your fishing ground, as well as fish locations, underwater vegetation, bottom contours, water temperature and depths.

The beam is versatile as well – you can easily switch between wide and narrow beam scans, all at the touch of a button.

What we like

  • The use of Wi-Fi technology – that makes this fish finder more useful because it easily integrates with your smartphone, allowing you to make adjustments and analyse fish grounds
  • Its technology plots the coordinates for you, making your fishing experience easier
  • Battery life is very long, considering its use
  • Good performance for the price
  • Easy to use and maintain
  • Versatile in many fishing grounds

What we did not like

  • The Wi-Fi connection is tricky to get in rough conditions
  • It is also difficult to get customer service in case of issues

Garmin Striker 4 GPS Fish finder

Similar to all STRIKER series of fish finders, the STRIKER 4 GPS finder also comes with highly sensitive GPS, which allows you to view your position in relation to other points you mark on the map. You can use the waypoint to see and navigate to specific areas like docks, brush piles and stumps. It is also very good to use it for finding your way back to the ramp of your boat.

The screen enables you to view the speed of your boat, and gives an opportunity to monitor the trolling speed. This will permit you to adjust for the lure you use and for specific fish types.

In addition, the finder comes with a portable kit that allows you to protect the finder, so this makes it very good for canoe, kayak or ice fishing. The kit includes a rechargeable battery with its charger, a storage and suction cup transducer mount, as well as a built-in transducer cable management and float.

An interesting aspect is the CHIRP technology that the finder uses. Instead of sending one frequency like the usual 77/200 kHz transducer, it sends a continuous frequency sweep that have different ranges (low to high). It then interprets them separately when they return. This technology allows it to make crisp fish arches due to higher separation of targets.

What we like

  • Has high accuracy levels in both deep and shallow water
  • It has a high level of detail for objects, and good navigation ability
  • Very easy to store and use
  • Good performance for the price

What we did not like

  • Similar to other STRIKER finders, the screen is small
  • When you move through the water at high speed, it has problems reading the water depth
  • The screen details are not visible in bright sunlight

Features to Look for in a Fish Finder

  • Frequency range

There are three ranges of frequencies that fish transducers use – multiple, single and dual. Various dual frequency transducers come in 60 or 20-degree cones.

Keep in mind that frequencies are a major difference when it comes to transducers, and this will affect the cone angles and sensitivity. Many transducers will come in 192, 83, 200 or 50 kHz. Also, remember the depth of your fishing ground when looking at frequencies. This is because higher frequencies like 200 kHz or 192 kHz will work better in shallow water, while lower frequencies will work better in deeper fishing grounds, for example for professional anglers.

The higher the frequency, the more details you will see on your screen. Therefore, for shallow water, the transducer sends more sonar waves out. You can even switch the display to more detail areas (narrower ranges) or bigger areas.

  • Screen display (resolutions)

In this aspect, consider a pixel to be one dot on your screen. This dot has the smallest detail amounts, which the screen can reveal to you. Many pixels will therefore give you a certain image. This is why you need to consider what screen display you want when you go out fishing.

For instance, if your screen is 480 x 320 pixels, that means there are480 pixels in every row (left to right), and 320 pixels in every column (vertical). This means that the more pixels your screen has, the more details you will see. Keep in mind that the minimal resolution you should go for is 240 x 160. Anything less than that and you will not view images clearly. In fact, with this resolution, the images will not be very sharp, so if you can get higher resolutions, the better it will be.

Screen size and resolution are the most important factor for determining the clearness of your display. More costly units will have bigger screens, and less costly ones will have smaller screens, so they are good for secondary finders or as backups.

If you are looking for a main fish finder unit for your use, it is best to go for a larger screen resolution. This will give you better options in terms of screen views, more data and more echoes.

  • The power of the unit

Another important factor to consider, and measured in Watts (W). It is directly proportional to the display resolution, so the higher it is, the better your screen resolution is, and the deeper your readings.

This makes one thing clear – if your fishing ground is in shallow water, it is best to go for the fish finder with less watts. This is due to the fish finder translating the sonar frequencies that the transducer sends, and when the power is less, the waves are slower and the reading is less sharp. If the power is high, sonar frequencies are faster and readings are sharper.

If you are fishing in deep water or salt water, the water is denser, so make sure you go for the higher power units, as high as you can get. If you are fishing in shallow water, the reverse is true – go for the lower powered units.

A general rule – at 50 kHz, for 100 watts of power the transducer shows readings up to 400 feet. In addition, for 200 kHz, for 100 watts of power the transducer shows readings of up to 100 feet. Use this rule when searching for the best power source.

You will get many mid-range finders of dual frequencies, so that you can view reading in both frequencies in split-screen manner. For instance, fish finders with frequencies of 85/200 or 50/200.

  • Transducer type

In a fish-finding unit, a transducer is responsible for sounding and receiving sonar signals. They do this by sending out sonar waves, and then these waves will bounce of objects and return to the transducer (similar to how water organisms and animals find objects). The main unit will pick up these returning waves, and it will then translate this data into a picture that you can understand easily.

Many fish finder units also come with transom mount transducers, and these happen to be the easiest transducers to mount. If your boat is more advanced or you just have higher requirements, it is better to BUY complex transducers, for example the thru-hull.

  • Material of the transducer

Transducers are from various material, and some materials are better for certain boat types than others are. Many fish finders on the market today come with plastic transom mounting transducer types, which is a good option for anglers that do sport fishing. These transducers are match well with various boat types except pontoon boats.

Recreational anglers have many options when it comes to fish finders – many of these will come with trolling motor transducers or transom mount transducers, which work very well in all boat types. Just keep in mind these rules when searching for a transducer:

Wooden hulls – use bronze instead of plastic, since when wood expands it can damage plastic transducers and cause leaks.

Through-hull – go for plastic or bronze casing.

Metal hulls – you should use insulating fairing, especially if you go for stainless steel casing.

Boats with positive ground systems – avoid transducers with metal housing.

  • Do you want a black and white or color screen?

Similar to televisions, the evolution of fish finder screens results in many finders having color screens. In fact, they offer better details and resolution compared to black and white screens. You have a better chance of understanding underwater objects and fish on a color screen since they pop out at you, instead of views in shades of grey.

Another advantage of color screens is that you can view them in direct sunlight. Even if the sky is cloudy on that day, you can see what is going on with a color screen. You can get black and white screens, but if your budget allows it, you can purchase a color screen.

  • Cone angles and beams

Cone angles determine the width of the beams that your boat sends into the water. Think of them as amplifiers, since they work in a similar way. Their top part contains the transducer. As the cone beam continues downwards, it gets wider.

This has a direct implication on the area the sonar waves cover. That means if you have a wider cone degree, the area the waves will cover will be larger. This comes with a caveat, however: if you get a very wide cone, the sensitivity of the waves will begin to lessen as you head out to deeper fishing ground.

The cones are in ranges of 9o to angles larger than 60o. Most finder units have cones that come between 16 and 20-degrees, but keep in mind that it is better to start with 20-degree cones. This is because they are versatile enough to accommodate anglers at differing depths.

Transducers that are currently in the market have a cool feature – they contain more than one cone that sends waves out within the same point. This means standard transducers have single beams, while higher-level ones contain dual, triple, side beams, and the list continues. Supplementary beams allow you to observe more water depths and areas, so this is a good option to get if you are searching for fish in a lake area.

In addition, certain models will come standard with the accessories while some will need upgrades. These will get more expensive, but the advantages they give you are worth it. Dual beams are also better than single beams if your fishing ground is in shallow water, due to them being able to cover more area easily.

Tips to Using a Fish Finder

Fish finders are very useful, as long as you know how to use them. Here are three tips to get the most out of your finders.

  • Combine the finder with a plotter

An important tool in fish finding is the chart plotter. When you use it in conjunction with the fish finder, it increases your ability to locate fish.

The best way to do this: if you have a combined unit, split the screen between the Charlotte and fish finder. If you do not have one, consider upgrading your system. This is because the plotter and finder will be in constant feedback, and this implies that when you get fish you no longer need to record the coordinates. The finder will record the spot location for you and you can revisit it afterwards.

  • Zooming the bottom

Consider this more often because it gives you more information on the areas you are zooming. This will mainly work for shallow areas, as it is irrelevant to know the bottom type for deeper grounds.

Keep in mind that the thickness of the line on screen is opposite to the reality. That means thicker lines denote soft bottoms and vice versa, due to sonar waves going through soft bottoms to some extent.

In light of this, also learn to identify thermoclines (areas of temperature changes in water). On screen, it is easy to confuse them for fish because they look like faint readings. How you can tell them is they remain at constant depths for long periods.

  • Sensitivity of the tuner

Finders today have very good technology, but it is important to remember – turn down the sensitivity when in murky water, or when you are in water having dense algae or plankton growth. You should instead increase the transducer power and reduce the tuner until the clutter goes.

Final thoughts

Our pick for this round is the Humminbird 410210-1 G2 finder. We particularly like the Smartstrike feature, which helps you to locate fish quickly with minimal time wastage, as well as the ability to adjust depths according to the ground you are working with. If you liked this article, check out some other articles I have written on inflatable boats, inflatable kayaks for fishing and one man fishing floats.

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Best Inflatable Camping Pillow

Best Inflatable Camping Pillow

Best Inflatable Camping Pillow: When you go camping with friends and family, you will want to look for utmost comfort out in the wild. Often, pillows will be the last thing on your mind as you pack. You, therefore, settle for a makeshift pillow made of stuffed clothing that is not only uncomfortable but may also cause you some neck and back injuries. For this reason, you need inflatable camping pillows. They are convenient and very comfortable. What’s more, since they are inflatable, you can use your preferred size.

I personally think that a good pillow is the difference between a good night’s rest and an overnight disaster. Even while in the wild, I certainly want to be comfortable. Inflatable pillows come in handy in that they are very easy to carry about as the hardly take up backpack space. I’ve had my share of inflatable pillows and I love those that I can use for both camping and travel. Take a look at seven of the best there are out there.

Inflatable Pillow Editor Rating Manufacturers Colors to choose from
Ultralight Inflating Travel/ Camping Pillows 4.3 Trekology Blue, Deep Blue, green, brown, orange, pink
Camping Pillow/ Inflatable Air Pillow 4.2 Onwego Black, blue, camouflage, green, Red, orange
Inflatable Camping Pillow/ Hikenture Ultralight Backpacking Camp Travel Pillow 4.5 Hikenture Blue, green, orange
ChillaX Ultralight Camping Pillow 4.7 The Big Blue Mtn. Blue, orange
‘Soft-top’ Inflatable, Backpacking, Camping, Travel Pillow 4.3 Onwego Blue, black
Aeros Pillow Premium 4.3 Sea to Summit Blue, green
Inflatable Camping Pillow 4.4 TNH Outdoors Blue

Ultralight Inflating Travel/ Camping Pillows

The ultralight inflating traveling/ camping pillow from trekology is small in size and big on comfort. It is ergonomically designed for superior back and neck support. The pillow is constructed from highly durable elastic TPU fabric that also doubles up as water resistance. The pillow has added layers for head support. The ergonomic design of the pillow is perfect for enhanced neck support regardless of your sleeping position.

This pillow is also quite easy to use. With the click of a button, you can inflate the pillow by mouth with approximately 3-5 breaths. The quick deflate feature allows you to deflate the pillow rapidly. You can also adjust the pillow’s firmness to your personal sleep preference. You can also use it as a footrest. For convenient access, you can easily carry this pillow in your backpack or even your pocket. The back of the Dreamer Comfort pillow is made of a slip-resistant material to prevent your head from moving about while sleeping.

Many inflatable pillows are noisy, but I especially love this pillow because the material is light and soft. This makes the pillow very quiet.

It is crucial to note that this pillow cannot be washed and you only need to use a paper towel to wipe clean the surface when it gets dirty.

Trekology also offers a one year warranty on this pillow.

Pros

  • It is extremely comfortable and compact
  • It is lightweight and easy to inflate and deflate
  • If well used, it is quite durable
  • The material is really soft to touch therefore comfortable
  • The material is water resistant

Cons

  • The pillow starts to leak after several uses
  • The valve is a built difficult to open for deflating
  • The pillow may be smaller than expected

Camping Pillow/ Inflatable Air Pillow

I especially loved this pillow because it is contoured to cradle your head and support your neck. It is quite clear that this pillow was designed with comfort in mind. Its soft and smooth pillow top material and plush foam interior make the pillow extremely comfortable.

This pillow is adjustable and self-inflates when you twist open the safety-lock air valve. You can increase its firmness by gently blowing into the air pillows valve. Deflating it is just as easy. Just open the valve and roll the pillow towards the valve opening. This inflatable camping/ traveling air pillow is made from specialized outdoor-grade moisture-resistant material making it durable yet soft.

Although the vinyl cover works great for absorbing sweat, a pillowcase or fabric would be a great improvement. The pillow’s back is made of a material that is rugged and comfortable at the same time, making the pillow slip resistant.

Just like the ultralight inflatable traveling/camping pillow, this one is also not machine washable.Although not waterproof, it is water resistant. You will have to make sure that it is completely dry before repacking it.

Pros

  • Easy to clean. Wipe with a damp cloth with a touch of soap
  • It doesn’t absorb humidity when using it for camping
  • Quick to inflate and deflate
  • You can easily increase and decrease its firmness
  • The self-inflating feature is really convenient

Cons

  • It develops leaks after several uses
  • The stuffing on the inside scrunches over to one side making it uncomfortable
  • It has some really rough plastic edges at the trim
  • It may be larger and bulkier than expected

Tip: For maximum comfort, buy a pillowcase for this pillow.

Inflatable Camping Pillow/ Hikenture Ultralight Backpacking Camp Travel

Hikenture camp sleeping pillow folds smaller than a coke can and when inflated it provides a comfortable neck support for stomach, side and back sleepers alike. With just 1-3 puffs, your pillow will be inflated. It also deflates rapidly. The unique valve system allows you to adjust the pillow’s firmness to your level of comfort.

This inflatable camping pillow conforms perfectly to the curve of your neck, head, and spine to keep your head in place. I also used this pillow indoors as a backrest when sitting on a chair. This pillow is really light making it easy to carry for backpackers and campers.

Water will break down the inner coating, therefore, this pillow is not machine washable. Just use wipes to wipe clean the pillow if it gets dirty.

The great thing about this pillow is that it is a risk-free purchase. Hikenture offers a 100% money back guarantee should the pillow not live up to your expectations. They offer excellent customer service and are keen to follow up on customers’ satisfaction. They also offer a free replacement for a defective product. The pillow also comes with a one year warranty.

Pros

  • It is versatile- you can use it as a head/lumbar support for your sofa or office chair
  • The arc design on the pillow makes it soft and comfortable
  • It is easy to inflate and deflate
  • It is durable, waterproof and water resistant

Cons

  • It leaks air after a couple of uses
  • It may not be as big as expected
  • It is a little hard to squeeze down back into the carry sack

ChillaX Ultralight Camping pillow

Whether you are backpacking, camping with family, hiking the mountains or simply need some lumbar support, Chillax ultralight camping pillow is the best option for you. The pillow has an easy specially designed two-way valve that prevents air leaks. You won’t have to keep inflating your pillow at night, as is with other inflatable pillows.

Inflating and deflating this pillow is quite easy too. The back of the pillow is made of a slip-resistant material that prevents it from unwanted sliding. It also comes with a sleeping mask, a sleep aid and eye relaxer (talk about a relaxing good night’s sleep!)

Chillax aim to make you a happy customer and they promise to refund or replace your purchase in case you do not like the pillow making this a no-risk purchase. Aside from using it when camping, the chillax ultralight pillow can also be used to correct your posture while sitting and working at your desk. Regardless of your sleeping position, the pillow offers ergonomic support for your head, neck, and back. Not only does the improved ergonomic design enhance comfort and efficiency, but also makes the pillow more durable.

For the inflatable pillow newbies, the chillax ultralight camping pillow comes with instructions that are easy to understand.

Pros

  • Easy inflation and deflation with the double-decked air valve
  • It is super small and lightweight
  • The pillow is extremely comfortable
  • It is waterproof
  • It is strong and durable

Cons

  • It smells heavily of chemicals
  • It is super bouncy
  • The seam around the pillow is cheap
  • It may not be a good fit for bigger people

‘Soft-Top’ Inflatable, Backpacking, Camping, Travel Pillow

This camping pillow from ONWEGO is ultralight and packable. It comes with its own stuff sack. For ultimate comfort, the pillow is made of super soft cotton with polyester batting. You can be sure you will not get the sweaty head like with other camping pillows.

I love this pillow as it inflates super fast. Deflating it is just as easy- just press the inner flap to quickly deflate or adjust the pillow’s firmness. The ‘Soft-Top’ pillow has a removable cover that makes it easier for you to clean up after your travels.

Unlike the other pillows above, you can wash this one with some mild soap and water. With this pillow, you do not have to worry about it losing air. It can remain inflated even up to days!

Pros

  • It is durable yet soft
  • It can be inflated to full firmness
  • It holds the air in (does not leak)
  • It is more compact as compared to other inflatable pillows

Cons

  • The underside is very slippery making the pillow move about
  • It is quite difficult to pull the plug and put it on the pillow

Aeros Pillow Premium

Of all the pillows here, I prefer this one the most. Sea to summit makes this pillow with brushed polyester knit making it very soft and durable. The synthetic fill between the case and the TPU bladder maximises your comfort and puts away the perspiration leaving you dry and very comfortable.

The pillowcase construction allows the outer shell to retain maximum softness while still being supported by the high strength TPU bladder. The curved internal baffles create contours that cradle your head for extra comfort. Whether you are sleeping on your back, side, or upright in a chair, the scalloped bottom edge centers the pillow over your shoulders. What’s more, inflating the pillow is super easy in a couple of breaths with the multi-functional valve.

Unlike the other inflatable pillows above, this one retails in different sizes, from small, medium, large and extra large.

The aeros pillow premium does a great job of insulating in cold weather. You can confidently bring it out for those chilly nights.

Pros

  • It is thick enough so as not to hurt your neck
  • It is really lightweight and compact
  • The side on which you place your face is soft and cozy enough
  • It aligns with the shoulders for maximum comfort

Cons

  • It starts leaking after several uses
  • It may rip at the seams
  • The small pillow size may not be suitable for bigger people

Inflatable Camping Pillow by TNH outdoors

This pillow by TNH outdoors is built with the harsh realities of the wild in mind. The ergonomic design ensures your pillow stays flat for your shoulder, neck and head support so you can sleep easily and remain well-rested. It has a two piece waterproof valve, one for inflation and the other for deflation. With the unique design, you can be sure that the valve won’t get stuck in place.

I especially love this pillow for its silk style knitted cotton fabric with a soft contour. What’s great about that is that it does not get sticky and sweaty, so you can enjoy your sleep. The material also helps to keep the pillow in place and stop it from sliding around your mattress, hammock or sleeping pad.

The lifetime warranty on this pillow is certainly a bonus for TNH Outdoors. Like the others above, the pillow comes with a stuffable, compact compression and a mini lightweight travel size.

Pros

  • It is comfortable
  • It takes up very little space when traveling
  • It is lightweight
  • It is made of strong, durable and yet thin fabric

Cons

  • Opening the valve to inflate the pillow is difficult
  • You can’t release the air slowly to adjust the pillow’s firmness
  • The pillow loses air over time

Why you Should own an Inflatable Pillow

An inflatable pillow is a must-have for any outdoor enthusiast. Whether you are going camping, to the beach, or just for traveling, this pillow could do wonders for your comfort. Bad posture can do damage to your spine and inflatable pillows can help you correct that. If you are constantly working or sitting at your desk, placing an inflatable pillow at your back will provide some lumbar support. Inflatable pillows are not exactly expensive and if you get just the right one, it can serve you for a really long time.

So forget all about stuffing your clothes to make a make-shift pillow and get yourself an inflatable pillow. Traveling and camping will be a very comfortable experience with your new inflatable pillow. The only downside of inflatable pillows is that they are quite prone to popping if not handled well. You may, therefore, have to be extra careful when handling them, especially those made of really light material.

Who said inflatable pillows can only be used for traveling and camping? You can ditch your old pillows and welcome these awesome ones to your bedroom. Most inflatable pillows are extra comfy and unlike regular pillows, you can adjust them to your preferred firmness. I would especially recommend these pillows for people with back and neck problems.

How to Clean an Inflatable Pillow

So, you finally went ahead and got that inflatable camping/traveling pillow. The only question you may have is, “How do I wash it?”

Cleaning your inflatable pillow is not rocket science, you just hand wash and air dry it.

When washing your pillow, you first must ensure the air valve is closed. This is to prevent any water from getting inside it. Immerse the pillow in soapy water and gently scrub using your hands. When you are confident your pillow is clean, repeat the procedure, this time using clean, plain water, to rinse it. You can do this as many times as necessary until you are sure all the soap is off the pillow. Go ahead and hang your pillow, then, to air dry.

To prevent mold and mildew, ensure your pillow is dry before storing it. Store it while flat or loosely rolled up with the valve open.

Alternatively, you can read the label on the pillow to see if it can be machine dried. If it can, put your pillow(while deflated, of course) into the washing machine with a mild detergent. Run it through a washing cycle with cold water. Transfer the pillow into the clothes-dryer and dry it using an air setting or a low heat. In case your pillow is not dryer safe, hang it to dry in the open.

What to Look for When Buying an Inflatable Pillow

When buying an inflatable pillow, just like any other thing, there is a lot to consider. Inflatable pillows are mostly designed to be for camping and traveling. So, if you are going to be using your pillow for those purposes, bear in mind that you will be moving about (a lot) with your pillow.

What should you consider?

 

The shape of the pillow when inflated.

There are various shapes of pillows out there. U- shaped pillows are the most common types of travel pillows. Inflatable pillows come in various shapes although they do not vary much. When you are choosing an inflatable pillow, bear in mind what kind of shape it is when inflated, A U-shaped inflatable pillow will be a great choice for airplane travel but may not be too comfortable for your camping expedition.

 

Size

Just like the shape, inflatable pillows vary in size too. For backpackers, the size of your pillow will certainly be a major factor. You will need something that is compressible and does not take up a lot of backpack space. Lightweight inflatable pillows are also ideal as they help keep the weight of the backpack down.

 

Sleeping habits

Whether you sleep on your back, on your side or on your stomach, your biggest concern should be if your spine is properly aligned. An ideal inflatable pillow should take up the shape of your bof=dy, regardless of your sleeping position, for maximum comfort.

 

Fabric

The fabric of your inflatable pillow is really important. While some materials may look and feel great, they may not do a good job of absorbing humidity. Your pillow should be made of a material that does not get sweaty and sticky to ensure your comfort. Also, you will need to aim for material that does well in just about any weather condition, be it the chilly cold ones or the hot humid nights. Inflatable pillows made of light fabric may also not hold up and may be prone to popping.

 

Durability

If you are planning to use your inflatable pillow for a long period of time, consider getting one that is durable. Rather than buy a cheap pillow that will only serve you a short time, you should preferably invest a couple more bucks to get something that will last.

 

Cost

Inflatable pillows range in prices. Before settling for one that may not be quite pocket-friendly, make sure to check the markets for other various options that may be viable.

Conclusion

Inflatable pillows are a must-have. It doesn’t even matter whether you go camping a lot or not. Invest in one or two of these and notice the difference in comfort as compared to regular pillows. The fact that they are so lightweight is amazing and allows you to bring them almost anywhere. Seriously, if you haven’t got yourself an inflatable camping/ traveling pillow, you are missing out on a lot. Last thing – a great combo or even a replacement for a camping pillow can be a dry bag believe it or not! Let me know if you would like to know anything else in the comments.

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Best Inflatable Fishing Kayak

Best Inflatable Fishing Kayak

Best Inflatable Fishing Kayak: If you are someone who likes fishing but finds it inconvenient to get a large boat, then these inflatable Kayaks are ideal for that trip to the lake. The kayaks are easy to carry, and you can set them up in a matter of minutes. Most have better features than in a hard shell kayak.

There has been a rise in the use of inflatable kayaks. They have moved from being a backyard form of recreation to an important part of everyday fishing. Inflatables are easy to carry and assemble. Most are made from tough materials that can withstand tear; making them ideal for use in rapid rivers.

Kayaks are convenient for fishing trips, camping or river running voyages. It can be difficult finding the right inflatable fishing kayak, especially if you have never used one. That is why we have taken the liberty to review some of the best inflatable fishing kayaks.

Summary Table of the Best Inflatable Fishing Kayaks

Name of Kayak Editor review Size No of persons weight
Sevylor Rio 1-Person Fishing kayak 4.5 9 ft X 9 in. X 3 ft One 350 lbs
Sevylor Tahiti 3 Person Fishing kayak 3.8 10 ft X 4 in. X 1 in Three 360 lbs
Elton Outdoors 10’ Foot Inflatable Tear Resistant Fishing Kayak with Double Sided Oars 4.0 118 in X 25 in X 16 in two 450 pounds
AIRHEAD AHTK – 2 Montana Performance 2 Person Kayak 4.0 12 ft Two 500 pounds
Advanced Elements Strait Edge Inflatable Kayak 4.0 20 in X 15 in X 15 in One 300 lbs
Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-person Fishing Kayak 4.3 10 ft  X 9 in X 3 ft Two 470 lbs
Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Sport kayak Fishing package 2.5 12 in X 10.8 in X 2.1 in Three 650 lbs

Sevylor Rio 1-Person Fishing kayak

Sevylor Rio 1-Person Fishing Canoe

This one person kayak offers both comfort and stability when paddling. It is suitable for fishing and paddling. When it comes to paddling, you need something that can handle punctures. The Sevylor comes in an 18-gauge PVC construction that is ideal for use in rugged lakes.

Also, it comes with a 1000D tarpaulin bottom that ensures you do not cut your trip short through punctures. In case you do get a puncture then the kayak has multiple air chambers that ensure that you can go on if one is deflated.

The Sevylor has trolling motor fittings which enable you to add a motor for better fishing experience. Paddle holders help you to safely secure your paddles. You also get an adjustable seat for that maximizes your comfort through the trip.

The Sevylor is very long which gives you lots of space for cargo. The Sevylor offers great maneuverability which gives you great tracking capabilities. You can paddle the Kayak or add a motor to it. The Sevloy is good value for money. The patented Sevylor airtight system ensures that you do not experience any leaks.

This is a kayak that is very suitable for use in calm waters like lakes. You can use it for fishing. But, the kayak is not suitable for faster river currents. The Sevylor is very long at 10 feet which offers you great tracking capabilities and has excellent maneuverability. When you purchase the kayak you will need paddles for easy gliding. The Sevylor has additional accessories like the Berkley Quick Set rod holder. When it comes to fishing you will have you hands free due to the adjustable holder.

Pros

  • PVC construction for rugged lake use
  • 1000 tarpaulin bottom and 840D nylon provide protection from punctures
  • Multiple air chambers that ensure you go on when one is punctured
  • Patented airtight system prevents leaks
  • Berkley Quick Set rod adjustable holder
  • Extended motor fittings
  • Paddle holders to secure paddles in place

Cons

Can only carry one person

Customer review

“This is comfortable, easy to paddle kayak. It is easy to assemble, and I enjoyed fishing with it. The kayak has great maneuverability and the PVC flooring offers great protection against tears. The paddle holders secure the paddles firmly in place when you are fishing. However, you can only use it for solo trips”

Sevylor Tahiti 2 Person Fishing kayak

Sevylor Tahiti Hunt and Fish Kayak

This durable kayak is ideal for fishing and paddling. It comes in a unique green color that blends well with the environment. The Tahiti Sevylor is ideal for one or two paddlers and can be used in small lakes or rushing rivers.

This lightweight kayak is made from 21-gauge PVC that can handle rugged lakes. It has multiple air chambers that ensure you continue fishing even one of them is punctured. The adjustable seats with backrest are quite comfortable through the whole trip. The Seyvlor inflates and deflates easily which ensures you will be enjoying your fishing trip in minutes.

It is very easy to set up courtesy of the double lock valves that use two locking points. You are also able to carry up to 400lbs of loads. You will not have to worry about tipping over due to the tubular I beam flooring; additional spray covers protect you from water and ensure you are dry.

When you buy this kayak, you get a carry bag for free. The Sevylor Tahiti has excellent maneuverability capabilities that ensure that your fishing trip will remain memorable.

The sevylor has good stability and glides easily without tipping over. You can load up your kids and the dog for those camping trips in this kayak. It is lightweight and is easy to carry when you go fishing, camping or hidden spots. The kayak is limited when it comes to storage this may be due to the additional seats.

This is an ideal kayak for beginners and with its design and coloring it easily blends into the environment. It is very affordable and suitable for many families.

Pros

  • 21 gauge PVC for rugged lake use
  • Multiple chambers ensure you go on with your trip even after puncture
  • Comfortable, adjustable seats with backrest
  • Spray covers keep you dry
  • NMMA certified to carry 360lbs
  • Double lock valves for easy deflation/inflation

Cons

No pump set up

Customer review

It tried this kayak when I was going fishing in low water currents. The kayak handled well, and I was able to paddle my way against the wind. When it comes to family trips this kayak is what we needed. We were able to carry our son and dog in it. I never liked fishing but with this kayak I may be changing my mind.”

Elkton Outdoors 10’ Foot Inflatable Tear Resistant Fishing Kayak with Double Sided Oars

Elkton Outdoors 10' Foot Inflatable Tear Resistant Fishing Kayak

If you are looking for a kayak that gives you excellent maneuverability with additional features, then the Elton Outdoors is the right choice. You can load up this kayak on your next fishing trip. It inflates quickly, and you will be able to set up in minutes.

The Elkton Outdoors is made from durable 18-gauge rip resistant 1000 PVC which relieves you any worries of tear and leakages. But, really captivates us with this kayak is the accessories you get when you purchase it; comes with adjustable seats, two vertical and four trolling rod holders, double-sided oars, foot pump, repair kit and a carry bag. With all this, you are ready for that fishing trip.

The Elkton Outdoors comes with three separate removable air chambers. This ensures that your trip is not interrupted when you experience a puncture. You are also able to diagnose and make repairs easily. It takes less than one minute to fully inflate this kayak. The kayak dimensions are 118” X 35” X 16” which makes this kayak suitable for family fishing trips. You have enough space for your camping gear.

The kayak is very easy to carry and you can fold it up and put it into your vehicle. It has a weight limit of 450 pounds. You get additional rod holders for easy fishing. The kayak however is not suitable for taking on serious rapids or rugged terrains with sharp rocks.

Pros

  • Inflates easily
  • Detachable air chambers
  • Comes with several accessories like rod holders, double-sided oars, foot pump and carry bag
  • Durable due to 1000D PVC

Cons

May not be suitable for rapids due to tear

Customer review

“The extra accessories come in handy because I was able to save some bucks. The kayak offered great maneuverability even when going against strong river currents. The Elton outdoors comes with a lot of extras that we found to be very suitable when out fishing. The detachable air chambers make it easier to find tears and repair them. We were also able to continue with our trip after one air chamber become deflated.”

AIRHEAD AHTK – 2 Montana Performance 2 Person Kayak

AIRHEAD AHTK – 2 Montana Performance 2 Person Kayak

When it comes to a good kayak; the quality of materials used determines a lot. The Airhead is made from durable semi-rigid heavy gauge PVC material that ensure little tear. The airhead has three air chambers enclosed in a durable 840 nylon that is UV resistant. You also get spray covers that keep you dry.

This 12-foot inflatable kayak has a weight capacity of 500 pounds and carries two people. It is designed for lakes and can handle fishing, camping or for exploring in remote areas.  The two Boston valves ensures fast and easy inflation and deflation.

The kayak is very comfortable because of its removable inflatable seats that also provide you with excellent back support. You also will experience low drags and superior tracking courtesy of its four bottom fins. The neoprene guards offer comfort for your elbows.

The airhead leads in quality with 6 D rings at the bow and stern that helps to secure gear and stretch net in bow. In addition, metal instruments are made from stainless steel that does not rust. The Airhead is portable and lightweight which makes ideal for traveling. The orange color is quite visible when emergency situations arise.

The airhead is ideal for many beginners by providing easy entry and exit. The grab handle makes for easy puts ins and take outs. The cockpit offers lot flexibility even under stressful circumstances. The kayak stands at around 12 feet and performs well in lakes and white water. The light weight design offers great navigation especially for beginners. But, this compromises on tracking. With 4 bottom fins you are assured of the kayak doing great on a straight line.

Pros

  • Spacious 12 foot kayak that can handle 500 pounds
  • Easy to carry
  • Threaded drain hole with plug
  • Inflates and deflates easily
  • Neoprene handles for elbow comfort
  • Stainless steel hardware that does not corrode easily
  • Durable semi-rigid heavy gauge PVC
  • Orange color for safety

Cons

Can take time to dry

Customer reviews

“I liked the airhead because I could carry lot of stuff in it. The PVC fabric is very durable. Airhead is known for making quality items and this kayak did not disappoint us. I have never used a kayak before but I found the airhead ideal for any beginner. It gave me easy entry and exits.”

Advanced Elements Strait Edge Inflatable Kayak

Advanced Elements Strait Edge Inflatable Kayak

Unlike other kayaks where the shape is defined by the tubing in the outer rims the advanced element uses in built aluminum ribs which help to define the bow and the stern. This goes a long way in improving tracking especially in extreme weather conditions.

The kayak is easy to use because it has been assembled in the factory; all you will need is to inflate it. Comfortable, adjustable padded seats make this kayak stand out. The heavy duty PVC tarpaulin material is durable enough to withstand any punctures and tear.

The advanced element is stable and provides easy entry and exits. It also offers great maneuverability and dries very quickly. It is suited for one paddler and comes with the following accessories; folding seats and a repair kit. The kayak was developed for self-bailing and whitewater paddling.

This one person kayak is suitable for one person. With a weight limit of 300 pounds it is very roomy and comfortable when paddling. The kayak handles well in rugged waters without tear.

Pros

  • Aluminum ribs that define bow and stern
  • Heavy duty PVC tarpaulin reduces tear and punctures
  • Offer great maneuverability
  • Padded, adjustable seats for maximum comfort
  • Yellow color for safety
  • Easy to assemble

Cons

May not handle very strong river currents

Customer reviews

“This is a very comfortable white paddling kayak. I enjoyed using it when I was going for camping trips. It is very easy to assemble and light enough to carry. As a one man kayak I found this kayak to be very comfortable. The kayak inflates very easily and you are soon enjoying yourself”

Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-person Fishing Kayak

Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-person Fishing Kayak

This two person kayak is made to last. It comes with a 1000D tarpaulin bottom with an added 840D nylon cover which keeps the kayak from punctures. The Sevylor has an added 18-gauge PVC suitable for rugged lake use. This is an ideal kayak for both fishing and paddling.

The Airtight system is guaranteed to prevent leaks and with multiple air chambers you can continue with your fishing trip when one of the chambers is deflated. You can expand your kayak capabilities with the added motor fittings or just quickly fasten paddles to the paddle holders.

The kayak is NMMA certified to hold 470 lbs which you can attach to the D-rings. This is an ideal kayak for couples; it’s comfortable enough with adjustable seats. The Sevylor 2 person kayak is easy to carry and store and the Boston valves offer faster inflations and deflation. The Beckley Quick Rod holders offer adjustable pole angles for the ultimate fishing experience. The kayak is made specifically for lake use; this is due to its resistance to sharp rocks and tree branches. Inflatable kayaks produce little noise which makes them ideal for fishing. The coleman was disappointing though because it comes with a pressure gauge instead of a pressure pump; which would have made more sense. Customers have been impressed by the paddle holders and the carry bag that comes with it.

Pros

  • Durable PVC thick bottom
  • Adjustable comfortable seats
  • Easy inflation and deflation courtesy of the boston valves
  • D-rings for easy storage
  • Motor fittings and paddle holders
  • Extra carry bag and pressure gauge

Cons

The kayak cane easily be blown off during strong winds

Customer reviews

“We really enjoyed the fishing trip with my wife courtesy of the Sevylor 2 person kayak. The kayak was spacious enough to accommodate our gear. We were able to easily inflate and deflate it. This is the perfect kayak for couples. ”

Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Sport kayak Fishing package

Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Sport kayak Fishing package

The sea eagle carries 3 persons and can handle weights of up to 650 lbs. This ensures that you load up all your gear for that camping or fishing trip. The sea eagle has become a favorite with its lightweight design and durable 38 mil PolyKrylar K80 Pvc. It inflates in 8 minutes, which means you don’t waste a lot of time.

You get two molded kegs which reduces paddling effort and increases your speed. The skegs are made from durable material that is able to withstand rocks. Included with the kayak is a multipurpose storage box with two rod holders. The deluxe inflatable sea eagle seats are comfortable enough for long trips. You also get a foot pump, repair kit and a carry bag when you purchase the sea eagle.

The sea eagle really stands out with its customizable abilities. You can even add a sail to it. The dual skegs enable you to glide over surfaces with minimal effort.

Pros

  • Comes with multipurpose storage box with two rod holders
  • Molded skegs enable fast gliding
  • It has a lightweight design that is easy to carry
  • The kayak is very durable and stable
  • Comes with foot pump and carry bag

Cons

Lack footrests which make it a bit difficult for paddling

Customer reviews

“The sea eagle is very portable and easy to paddle. We were able to go fishing on the lake with ease. The skegs glide easily on water and provide the sea eagle with extra propulsion.”

How to Choose the Best Inflatable Fishing Kayak

There are various types of inflatable kayaks and your purpose will determine which one you choose.

  1. Types of Kaykas

Touring Kayaks

These are kayaks that are suitable for flat water due to their long and thin shape. To boost steering the kayaks come with a rudder. They have the added benefit of higher cruising and load capacity with easy straight line paddling. You can have all your supplies of food, water and camping gear. They are also very comfortable when doing very long journeys. Similar to touring kayaks are sea kayaks which operate well in the open seas and come with scupper holes.

White water Kayaks

These are usually wide and short and are suitable for navigating big rocks. They are also easy to steer and have scupper holes that drain water. You can use them in white waters because the water will propel the kayak downstream.

Fishing Kayaks

The distinctive feature in most of this is a round shape in the front and back. They also come with fishing rods and bait buckets.

  1. Portability

When it comes to inflatable kayaks one of the key considerations the flexibility to fold the kayak and put it in your motor vehicle. Unlike hard shell kayaks that need car configurations the inflatable kayaks fold easily. Most can be set up in minutes. There are those that come in heavy duty materials; they are bulky but durable. You will need to weigh all options when you are buying one. The best inflatable kayaks are the ones you can easily carry around during camping trips.

  1. Materials used

Inflatable kayaks are usually made form three distinct materials. The most durable of them is the hypalon. This is material is made from synthetic rubber and offers resistance from UV, tear from rocks and corrosion by water elements. Most of the kayaks tend to use PVC it is not only durable but it is affordable. You will find a combination of PVC and nylon. The last material used for inflatable kayaks is nitrylon; the material offers resistance from corrosion as well as punctures.

  1. Comfort

New inflatable kayak models come with padded adjustable seats for maximum comfort. These kayaks are ideal for long distance trips. You should decide how many people you intend to carry with the kayak; models come in one, two or three person seats.

Longer kayaks offer more legroom and are suitable for those long trips. Comfortable seats enhance your fishing experience.

  1. Accessories

Some kayaks will come with additional accessories like foot pumps, carry bags, and paddles. Look for one that is most affordable with extras. You can also get kayaks with motor fittings for added power.

  1. Maneuverability

You will need to select the right kayak that ensures great maneuverability. This is a kayak that enables you to handle rapids well. The rule is that the shorter a kayak is the quicker it responds. However, longer kayaks are usually faster and paddle easily. When you are looking for a fishing kayak then stability should be your priority.

  1. Air chambers

New kayak models come with separate air chambers. These chambers ensure that you can continue with your trip even when one of them is punctured. You are also able to diagnose problems easily and make repairs. Kayaks are susceptible to tear and may not handle very well in areas with strong rapids.

  1. Inflation/deflation

A good kayak is the one that you can inflate in minutes. There is no need to waste your fishing time inflating it. Most of the newer models will come with their own foot pumps and some will have a pressure gauge. Make sure to maintain the recommended pressure. After you are done fishing you should be able to deflate it in minutes and pack it.

  1. Color

The color of a kayak plays an important role when it comes to rescue operations. Orange is a preferred color as it is easily visible. However, if you are thinking of fishing you can choose a kayak in a jungle green color that camouflages easily with the surroundings.

Our Verdict

When selecting the right kayak you should first consider what purpose you are going to use the kayak in. A kayak should enable smooth paddling while offering maneuverability. The winner for the best inflatable fishing kayak is the Sevylor Rio 1-Person Fishing kayak. This is a one person kayak that is comfortable enough with adjustable, padded seats. It has is made from a durable PVC material that is able to handle tears easily. You can add on a motor for faster kayaking. With lots of cargo space, this is the ideal kayak for fishing expeditions. Another great option for fishing are one man inflatable fishing floats. 

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Best Inflatable Life Vest for Fishing

Best Inflatable Life Vest for Fishing

Best Inflatable Life Vest for Fishing: While fishing, it is important to have a PFD on, rather than on your boat. You never know what could happen. You could be a skilled swimmer, but accidents do occur. Unfortunately, there have been documented cases of fatal water accidents. The reasoning usually is, “I’ll have time to grab my PFD should anything happen”.

Inflatable life vests are much less cumbersome as compared to the other standard foam-filled life jackets. You want to be sure of your safety and at the same time be comfortable. The inflatable PFDs are a really great choice for you. Take a look at seven of the best plus some additional information on inflatable life jackets.

Inflatable Life Vest Rating Manufacturer Inflation Style
Slim Inflatable PFD Life Jacket 4.6 Eyson Automatic/ Manual
Onyx A/M-24 Inflatable Life jacket 4.5 Absolute Outdoor Automatic/ Manual
Onyx M-24 Inflatable Vest 4.6 Absolute Outdoor Manual
Slim Inflatable PFD Lifejacket
4.4 Eyson Manual
Inflatable Life Jacket Life Vest 4.3 Eyson Manual
Corp M.I.T 100 PFD 4.6 Mustang Survival Automatic
M-16 Inflatable Belt Pack 4.7 Onyx Manual

Slim Inflatable PFD Life Jacket Life Vest Adult Automatic/Manual

Slim Inflatable PFD Life Jacket Life Vest Adult Automatic/Manual

Life jackets can be a bit uncomfortable but this slim inflatable PFD from Eyson ensures you remain comfortable. You can choose your best from the wide range of colors; ten to be precise.With a soft neoprene neckline, you are assured that even when wearing it for a whole day, you will be extra comfy. The inflatable PFD is lightweight and you won’t even notice you have it on until you need to use it.

With an adjustable belt fit for the universal adult, the belt comes with a slender design that helps keep you cool in warm weather. You can be confident that this PFD will serve its purpose should the need arise as it is CE certificated. It also features the SOLAS approved 3M reflectors.

Keeping this inflatable PFD clean shouldn’t be a hassle. It is reusable, washable and easy to dry. With a buoyancy of 150N, this inflatable PFD can easily support universal adults under 330 lbs (150 kg). Should you fall into the water, you won’t need to wait for long for it to self-inflate. 3-5 seconds is all it takes!

Pros

  • The airbag has reflectors for greater visibility in darkness
  • The heavy-duty nylon fabric makes this PFD soft and lightweight
  • Quick release buckles make for easy on-and-off and easy to repack
  • The durable ripstop fabric makes the PFD resistant to tears and punctures

Cons

  • It is not U.S. Coast Guard approved

Onyx A/M-24 Automatic/Manual Inflatable Life Jacket

Onyx A/M-24 Automatic/Manual Inflatable Life Jacket

Just like the slim inflatable PFD from Eyson, this one also has a soft neoprene neckline for all-day wearing comfort. I particularly love this inflatable life jacket as it is both automatic and manual. To manually inflate it, you just have to pull the T cord. It also automatically self-inflates upon immersion in water.

The reflective piping on the vest offers better visibility, especially in the dark. The durable ripstop material resists tears and punctures while holding up to the rigors of outdoor use. Its slender design helps to keep you cool in warm weather, so go ahead and use it on your summer fishing trip.

The best thing about this vest is that it is U.S. Coast Guard-approved and provides a wide range of motion and movement with minimal bulk.

Pros

  • It is comfortable and lightweight
  • The price for this vest is pocket-friendly

Cons

  • It is a bit small for bigger persons
  • Humidity and moisture impacts the switch over time so you may have to get a recharge kit from time to time
  • It doesn’t have heavy duty rings for lifting with tackle someone from the water to the boat

Onyx m-24 Manual Inflatable Vest

Onyx M-24 Manual Inflatable Vest

Unlike its counterpart above, this vest can only be manually inflated by pulling the ‘jerk to inflate’ handle. Besides that, it is equipped with backup oral inflation to provide you with safety, comfort, and peace of mind.

This vest is especially handy for new users of inflatable life vests. It shows green when armed and ready to use and shows red if not ready for use. The lightweight design makes this vest quite comfortable to wear, even for longer periods.

Pros

  • The attached D-rings are an excellent accessory
  • It is simple to reload the CO2 cartridge

Cons

  • It may be bulkier and heavier than expected

Legal disclaimer: This product contains chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm

Slim Inflatable PFD Life Jacket Life Vest Adult Manual

Slim Inflatable PFD Life Jacket Life Vest Adult Manual

The only difference between this life jacket and the other one above, also from Eyson, is that this one has a transparent window that allows you to see the CO2 cartridge.

It has a slim design with a soft neoprene neckline for all-day wearing comfort. The adjustable belt fit makes this beautiful vest a great fit for the universal adult. In warm weather, the vest is a great choice for its slender design keeps you cool.

The vest is CE certificated and has SOLAS approved 3M reflectors for greater visibility in darkness. It has a buoyancy of 150N and  would therefore comfortably support an adult under 330lbs (150kg)

The vest is reusable, easy to wash and air dry.

Pros

  • The airbag has reflectors for greater visibility in darkness
  • The heavy-duty nylon fabric makes this PFD soft and lightweight
  • Quick release buckles make for easy on-and-off and easy to repack
  • The durable ripstop fabric makes the PFD resistant to tears and punctures
  • Inflates in 3-5 seconds when the inflation handle cord is pulled

Cons

  • It is not U.S. Coast Guard approved

Inflatable Life Jacket Life Vest basic Manual

Inflatable Life Jacket Life Vest basic Manual

The lightweight and durable fabric of this vest is certainly a plus. Unlike the others above, this life vest has an adjustable belt that makes it a great fit for adult and youth.

This inflatable life jacket life vest is reusable, washable and easy to dry. It also has a buoyancy of 150N and can comfortably support a weight under 330 lbs. The heavy-duty nylon fabric makes this a soft and lightweight vest so you can go about your fishing without feeling weighed down.

Pros

  • Fast inflation. It inflates in under five seconds
  • It is ultralight and very comfortable
  • It has reflectors for greater visibility
  • It is durable for reusing
  • The adjustable strap webbing makes it a universal size

Cons

  • It is not U.S. Coast Guard approved

Corp M.I.T. 100 Auto Activation PFD

Mustang Survival Corp M.I.T. 100 Auto Activation PFD

This premium product from Mustang Survival has a sleek beautiful design. I love this simple vest as it is easy to wear and easy to use. Although this vest features auto inflation, it can be manually inflated by pulling the bright yellow detonator pull tab. In non-emergency situations, you can also orally inflate the PFD with the oral inflation tube.

For added safety and convenience, the M.I.T 100 PFD is equipped with an easy access flap and an inflator inspection window.  The membrane inflatable technology inside creates a lighter and more flexible fit for you.

Pros

  • It is light and comfortable
  • Easy to wear and use
  • It is of great quality making it quite durable

M-16 Belt Pack Manual Inflatable Life Jacket

M-16 Belt Pack Manual Inflatable Life Jacket

If you really don’t want to put on a life jacket, you do not have to compromise on your safety by not having a PFD on you. This sleek grey belt makes it less cumbersome for you while at the same time providing your safety.

The belt is made of 200 denier nylon oxford protective cover and has D-ring attachments for small accessories. You can use the oral inflation tube to provide additional buoyancy to the CO2 cartridge.  The belt is quite versatile and it can double up as a wading belt.

This lightweight belt is super comfortable and you will hardly notice you have it on. It is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard and persons over the age of 16 can use it. You have to be over 80lbs to use it although it has a Velcro type clasp to hold slack for the smaller people.

Pros

  • It is very light and comfortable
  • It is small therefore does not get in your way

Cons

  • The Velcro that covers the inflatable can come loose and needs regular checking

What to Look for When Buying an Inflatable Life Vest

Size

For your inflatable life vest to work as it should, it needs to be a perfect fit. Your inflatable life vest should fit snugly around your chest, but still, leave some room for you to move comfortably. Sizes range, depending on the model and manufacturers. While trying out an inflatable life vest, ensure you are wearing whatever you will have on while on the water.

Although there are unisex inflatable jackets, women should really consider getting PFDs that are specifically designed for them. These PFDs feature contoured cups for larger busts and are designed for larger torsos making them much more comfortable for women.

Getting the perfect fit could be a tedious process but it is well worth it.

Your water activities

Inflatable life jackets can be quite versatile and can be used for almost all water activities; fishing, sailing, boating, e.t.c. However, there are various instances where you are better off with the traditional inherently buoyant life jacket.

Inflatable jackets are not for high-speed impact with the water. If you are going to be engaging in high-speed activities, consider getting the standard life jacket. For activities that will require you to constantly get into the water, the inflatable jacket may not be a good choice. You will require repeated flotation and will, therefore, be better off with the buoyancy of the standard foam life jacket.

Buoyancy

This is the amount of force required to keep your head above water. Most people have natural buoyancy in the form of body fat. However, you will require additional buoyancy to remain afloat. While looking for an inflatable life jacket, be sure to look for how much buoyancy it will provide. The standard minimum buoyancy should be around 22lbs (100N). However, for offshore and coastal sailings, 33lbs (150N) is the recommended buoyancy.

Type of inflation system

Deciding on the inflation system of your life vest is very important. A manually inflated life vest will require you to be conscious and calm for you to activate the CO2 cartridge. You could also choose to go for an automatic with bobbin type os system. This kind of inflatable jacket uses a paper capsule that immediately releases the firing pin when it becomes wet.

If you will be taking part in something that could potentially leave you unconscious, the best kind of inflation system to go for is the hydrostatic automatic that self-inflates when submerged in water. This kind uses the water pressure to activate the CO2 cartridge.

Color

Your inflatable life jacket should be a bright color that is easily visible. In case you are in the water for some time, it will be easier to get spotted if your inflatable jacket is brightly colored.

Additional attachments and accessories

  • Reflective tape

Again, being visible in the water is crucial. Reflective tapes improve your visibility in low light conditions, especially for those using flashlights. In case your inflatable life jacket does not come with its reflectors, you can purchase some adhesive strips and put them on. Just make sure they are inflatable-approved.

  • Safety whistle

Most inflatable life jackets will come with a safety whistle attached. However, you can always attach your own if this is not the case. Being heard is still as important as being seen when you are stuck in the water.

  • Crotch straps

Crotch straps help keep your inflatable life jacket from riding up to your face. Keeping the vest in place ensures that your body, and more importantly your head will ride higher in the water. Purchase manufacture specific crotch straps if your inflatable doesn’t come with its own.

  • Spray hoods

Spray hoods can be a lifesaver in extreme weather conditions where waves, spray or rain is intense. Water in the face can make breathing difficult and spray hoods reduce this amount. They are conveniently stored in a small pouch attached to the waist belt of your inflatable PFD.

  • AIS (Automatic Identification System)

AIS units are generally activated by water though some are manual. They contain a GPS to broadcast your location to nearby vessels that are receiving AIS.

USCG approved or not?

Getting USCG approval takes time and money. Therefore some manufacturers, especially those in Europe may not seek the approval for their products, even if they will meet the standards. However, wearing an inflatable life jacket that is not USCG approved could land you a ticket so be on the lookout for that.

USCG typically categorizes the inflatable life jackets into five. Take a look.

  • Type I PFDs are geared for rough or remote waters where rescue may take a while. Though bulky, they have the most buoyancy and will turn most unconscious people into a face-up position. They are the kind of PFD you’ll likely find on commercial vessels. Type I PFDs are available in inherently buoyant, inflatable or hybrid designs.
  • Type II PFDs are intended for calm inland waters, where fast rescue is likely. They have a very basic design that is less bulky than Type I, and typically less expensive, but they are not as comfortable as Type III. They will turn some unconscious wearers to the face-up position. Type II PFDs come in inherently buoyant, inflatable or hybrid designs.
  • Type III PFDs are suitable for most paddlers where there is a chance for quick rescue. They offer freedom of movement and comfort for continuous wear. These PFDs are designed so wearers can put themselves in a face-up position, but they may have to tilt their head back to avoid being face down in water. Type III PFDs come in inherently buoyant, inflatable or hybrid designs.
  • Type IV PFDs are flotation devices that are meant to be thrown to a conscious person who is in trouble and provide backup to a PFD. Examples include life rings and buoyant cushions. Type IV PFDs are not meant to be worn and they are not required for canoes, kayaks or SUPs.
  • Type V PFDs are considered special-use devices and intended for specific activities. To be acceptable by the USCG, they must be worn at all times and used for the activity specified on the label. Varieties include kayaking, waterskiing, windsurfing, deck suits and hybrid inflatable vests. Type V PFDs come in inflatable or hybrid (inherently buoyant and inflatable) designs.

Get the right kit

For most watersports, nylon life vests are recommended. This is because they allow for a greater freedom of movement as compared to other materials. They are also cheap and light.

Testing your inflatable life vest

Before you actually go out with your inflatable life vest, you need to be confident that it works as it is supposed to. Testing your life vest should be a regular activity, especially if you are on the water frequently.

To test your inflatable life vest;

  • Put it on and adjust to make it a proper fit.
  • Wade into chest-deep water.
  • Bend your knees and float on your back
  • Ensure the life vest keeps your chin out of the water and that you can breathe properly.

Make sure that you are testing your inflatable life vest in a supervised environment.

Why it is Important to Have a Life Jacket While Fishing

It’s a beautiful sunny day and you decide to go fishing. The last thing you would want is to add on to the heat you are already feeling. So, rather than have your life jacket on while you are fishing, you opt to put it in your boat, just in case. After all, what could go wrong? And anyway, should anything happen, you will be able to get hold of your PFD fast enough, right?

This mentality is so wrong. Unfortunately, life jackets can only save lives IF won. Inherently buoyant life jackets may be a bit cumbersome, especially on a particularly hot day, but inflatable jackets are much more convenient.

Having a life jacket while fishing is crucial. You never know what could happen out there. Should you, by any chance fall overboard, your life jacket, be it the inherently buoyant or the inflatable type, will help keep you afloat. Although it is true that you could probably reach for your PFD when this happens, what if you are knocked out unconscious when you fall?

There have been fatal accidents documented where people drowned simply because they did not have their life jackets on them. Ensure your safety, regardless of how uncomfortable that life jacket is.

How do self-inflating jackets work?

Unlike the more common inherently buoyant life jacket that uses foam to stay afloat, the self-inflating life jackets rely on CO2 cylinders to provide buoyancy.

A self-inflating life jacket automatically inflates when submerged in at least four inches of water. This happens in two ways. The jacket could have a small tablet that dissolves in water causing the inflator to activate. Alternatively, the jacket could have a pressure gauge that activates the inflator.

All self-inflating jackets have a manual ‘Jerk to inflate’ system in case the automatic self-inflation fails. By pulling on the toggle or handle, a lever system gets released that pierces the CO2 cylinders, and therefore inflating the jacket.

You could also inflate the jacket orally by breathing into the inflation tube of the jacket.

Self-inflating life jackets can be very useful PFD (Personal Flotation Devices). However, they are not recommended for use by persons under the age of 16. People under the age of 16 must have a well-fitting inherently buoyant life jackets.

Non-swimmers are also not advised to use the self-inflating life jackets. Should the automatic inflation system fail, they will need to remain calm so as to pull the release for the cylinder. I don’t know about you, but if I suddenly fell into the lake and I didn’t know how to swim, remaining calm would be the last thing I’d do.

In addition to all that, inflatable PFDs are not for use for active water sports such as skiing, tubing, and waterboarding.

Although these jackets are re-usable, it is important to have the CO2 cylinder replaced after each use.

Self-inflating jackets vs manual life jackets: which ones are the best?

I know you are probably wondering, of the two, which one should I go for?

You have probably heard some myths about inflatable jackets.The self-inflating life jackets would be life-saving supposing you were knocked out unconscious when going overboard. They can, however, inflate inconveniently. For example, you could plunge through a wave while on the bow and the jacket would immediately inflate itself.

Manual life jackets, on the other hand, require you to be conscious and calm. Panicking would make you forget to manually inflate the jacket so if you are not a good swimmer, this may not be a good choice for you. As compared to automatic life jackets, the manual ones require less servicing and are more reliable.

That being said, the sole purpose of the life jacket is to act as your PFD, so, if you are comfortable with either, go ahead. Just make sure your life jacket is working properly before you go with it to sea, lake or whichever water body.

Are inflatable life jackets safe?

Just like any other PFDs, inflatable life jackets have to be approved by the U.S. Coast Guard. The manufacturers have to meet set standards before their products are approved. what’s more, should the manufacturer decide to change any feature, they will be required to go through the same vigorous process again.

So, if you buy a U.S. Coast Guard approved inflatable life jacket, you can be sure it is safe. Just ensure you do the regular checks as mentioned above and maintain your inflatable life jacket well to ensure efficiency.

Extra tips!

For them to do their job, inflatable life jackets need to be well-maintained.

  • Do not sit on them or use them as bumpers. This may cause damage to the jackets making them less efficient.
  • Make frequent inspections on your life jacket. Orally inflate it and ensure that it can hold air for up to 24 hours. Ensure the CO2 cylinder is neither discharged nor corroded and is screwed in tight. Replace immediately in case they are damaged.
  • To dry them, hang them out to air dry away from direct sunlight and in a well-ventilated area.
  • Store the jacket in an easily accessible place away from any chemicals.
  • Never dry-clean or use strong detergents to clean your jacket. Use some mild soap and water and rinse thoroughly.
  • Life jackets can never be worn under clothing. They wouldn’t be efficient and would lead to some injury.
  • ALWAYS have your inflatable life jacket on when you are on the water.
  • Replace the bobbin on your inflatable every 12 months, unless specified otherwise.
  • Inflatable life jackets labeled ‘for women’ will be a better pick for them rather than the unisex ones. This is because of the customized shape with the bust lines and contours.
  • Here are some great fishing kayaks or fishing floats

 

,

Best Snow Tubes

Best Inflatable Sports Inflatable Snow Tube

Best Snow Tubes: Get a big snow storm and the hills are begging you to slide down? There are a number of options that you have. You could go skiing or even snowboarding. But this means that you should be ready to spend hundreds of dollars. On the other hand, you could opt for the best snow tubes on the market that will give you and your family an awesome experience and save you some money.

A good snow tube is one that will be able to last you a long time and you will be to take out every time the snow decides to come. There are different brands of snow tubes on the market. A multi-use rubber inner tubes that can be used for the same purpose as snow tubes but the experience cannot be compared. These tubes will lack key features that higher end snow tubes have. Some of these features are the snow tube cover with a slick bottom and handles to hold on to while tubing down the hill. These are very important features that are able to reduce resistance, especially when trying to slide on wet snow or on fresh powder. You need one that has good support and shock and impact absorption. There are a number of snow tubes and it can be confusing for you to choose from. They differ in term of weight, quality, added features and brands. Here is a review of some of the best snow tubes that one can consider when looking for one.

Best Snow Tubes

Super Big 47 Inch Inflatable Snow Sled

Super Big 47 Inch Inflatable Snow Sled

38 Inch Snow Tube

38 Inch Snow Tube

Bingo Snow Tube

Bingo Snow Tube

Bradley Snow Tube Sled

Bradley Snow Tube Sled

Slippery Racer Inflatable Snow Tube

Slippery Racer Inflatable Snow Tube

Rating: 4.5/5Rating: 4.8/5Rating: 4.5/5Rating: 4.0/5Rating: 3.7/5
Color Options: 1Color Options: 2Color Options: 2Color Options: 11Color Options: 7
Material: PVCMaterial: PVCMaterial: PVCMaterial: VinylMaterial: Heavy Duty Polyethylene
Size: 47 InchSize: 38 InchSize: 38 InchSize: 48 InchSize: 42 Inch
Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $$Cost: $$

Scroll to the right to view all items in table

Super Big 47 Inch Inflatable Snow Sled

Super Big 47 Inch Inflatable Snow Sled

This is one of the snow-tubes with a large ski circle of 47-inches. This means that it is not limited to kids but can be used by adults.  It is one that is able to support riders of up to 500 pounds. If you are looking for a snow tube that is able to handle enough weight for a gloved use then this is a very good snow tube for you. When you are going as a family of few people then you don’t have to buy one for each of you. You can hold on to this one without the fear that it will burst.

Its material is of very good quality that it is able to handle up to a temperature of -40 degrees without cracking. This is heavy duty with a thickening material of 0.6mm. When skiing down the hill, you will not tire trying to hold on the sides of the tube since it has very sturdy hard plastic handles to hold on to.  A snow tube is one that will need constant inflating and deflating when it is needed. The A-dudu super Big snow tube can be inflated easily using a hair dryer making it easy and economical to do it. This is due to its three in one inflatable mouth. One does not need to invest in a pump or pay for someone to do it. In few minutes you are good to go.

The performance of a snow tube will be highly influenced by the bottom. This will determine the way it handles resistance. This tube has an anti-scratch ultra thick bottom which is very effective.

Pros

  • Super Big that can be used by anyone no matter the size.
  • Can be used by more than one person as it can handle a weight of up to 500 pounds
  • Very convenient as it comes with a water-proof patch kit. This is very important as one can put their things inside.
  • Beautiful and fashionable pattern design
  • Scratch free and thick bottom which reduces resistance

Cons

  • It is large and not very lightweight. It can be tiring carrying it uphill.

Chanvi Snow Tube Sled

38 Inch Snow Tube

If you are looking for a snow tube with decorative exterior but still functional enough for a smooth slide; get yourself this Chanvi snow tube. With a 38-inches diameter, this is big enough to be used by both adults and kids. This snow tube though is not very convenient for gloved use since it can only handle 120 pounds. As compared to some snow tubes who can handle up to even 500 pounds then this can come as an inconvenience. You can use it for shallow creeks too without destroying it.

With a 16 gauge Pvc, you can expose this snow tube to very cold weather without cracking. This makes it very durable. But this doesn’t mean you can’t use it in the hot weather. It can be perfectly used in the pool or river floating. It is necessary to get a snow tube that is able to resist friction when sliding. Its bottom is a big determinant of this. This tube is able to remain air cushioned for fast hours in the winter making it super exciting to use.  The grab handles come as a plus too for this tube. This means that as you fly down these slopes you are not afraid of sliding off your grip.

Pros

  • It comes with a cover that wraps around its bottom preventing the tube from filling up with snow that might weigh it down
  • Unlike the super large tubes, this one is light and it can be comfortably carried up the hill
  • Can be used for both the hot and very cold weather.
  • It has nice decorative patterns
  • It has a thick and tough durable material

Cons

  • It can only hold a small adult. A big person may not be able to use it as it is just 38 inches
  • It has a small weight limit of 120 pounds which can be so small if you want to use with a group.

Chanvi Inflatable Snow tube Sled

Bingo Snow Tube

This snow tube is very similar to the one above with a great difference in the appearance. The next time you are going to that ski resort; get yourself this sled. It will only take you a few minutes to inflate it since it has a large valve. All you need is an air pump. This valve is also double locking which guarantees that the seal is airtight. When done with the activities; deflating it will also take you just a few minutes.

Its 38 inches and the inside center seat is 8 inches which is just enough for an average adult. Its material is tough; even as a heavy person, you can slide fast downhill just not over some obstacles If you like one that can handle speed then this is a good one. It is very resistant to friction and it slides very fast with its Fast Fun with Super slick bottom surface.

Be careful to observe the weight limit which is 120 pounds lest this tube will blow up right under you. However, if you are within the weight, it is air cushioned for hours. Even in the coldest winter, it is able to hold up without cracking.

Pros

  • Very strong thanks to its 16-gauge PVC material
  • Features double welded seams for longevity and extra strength
  • Keeps the user stable and safe when sliding with its well-positioned grip handles
  • It comes with themed covers making the appearance very appealing.
  • Slides super fast and farther in all types of snows due to its bottom.

Cons

  • If used by larger kids it can easily pop due to their weight
  • It is said to handle up to 180 pounds in most descriptions but the recommended weight is 120 pounds. This can be misleading.
  • It gets all crooked when blown up and bows up on each side.

Bradley Snow Tube Sled

Bradley Snow Tube Sled

This is not only one of the best snow tube sleds but it pretty popular too. Most people are attracted by the fact that it is relatively large and it’s industrial grade vinyl bottom which is pretty strong. This is very good for adults as it has a 425 pounds tensile strength to handle their weight. You know that time when you want a group use; then it is just perfect as it can handle that kind of weight without bursting.

This tube has two sewn-in handles which are good for comfort and extra support when sliding down. It also has a patent pending tow loop and straps that secure the tube and cover. This also makes it easy to carry as you can just tow it on the snow as you move uphill. But this doesn’t mean you can tow it on a vehicle; it will destroy it. It doesn’t come with built-in leach but has a loop that you can tie a rope to.

This inflatable features a 600D polyester canvas cover which comes in different colors. The 42-inch covers, however, do not have patterns which might be a bit boring for kids as compared to the other alternatives. The interior hole is 22” which is deeper than the average sled. One can fit an adult and a child and slide together in case you want to shield your child. This tube might seem a bit pricey if you compare it with the other tubes but it is worth the time and money. This is because of its high quality, large size, and its heavy-duty bottom.

 Pros

  • Easy to inflate and deflate. It includes a valve stem remover kit right in the valve cap making it very easy and fast to inflate.
  • It is multi-purpose as the inner tubes can be used for water sports fun during the summer.
  • Comes in a variety of colors to choose from.
  • Lightweight to carry using the sewn-in tow straps and the handles also offer good support when sliding down.
  • This sled has a bottom with RapidGlideTM anti-friction technology. This means that it is very resistant and it is able to slide fast and farther as compared to the other sleds.

Cons

  • After using for some time; the inner tube will bulge a bit.

Slippery Racer Grande XL Inflatable Snow Tube Sled

Slippery Racer Inflatable Snow Tube

This snow tube sled is very good if you are looking for one that is going to absorb impact. This sled’s base is heavy duty, slick-coated hard shell polyethylene which absorbs shock. This also provides an ultra smooth sliding surface. One of the main things that make a good sled is one that has a high tensile strength. The slippery racer grande xl snow tube sled is able to hold a weight of up to 4300lb. This is a very good feature as it can comfortably hold more than one person without the fear that it is going to burst right under you. It is also wide enough with a diameter of 42”. Good for adult/child tandem riding when you are trying to protect your child.

With its wide diameter; it is important to have a good pair of handles. With double reinforced nylon webbed grip handles, then you can safely slide without losing control. When moving uphill; you can comfortably use its double reinforced pulley tow rope and continue with the fun sliding downhill. Be careful to check the valve stem inserts lest it will not be able to hold air when inflated,

During very cold weather, it does not crack as it is coated with Slippery Racer’s IceVex cold resistant treatment. Its material is built to last for years to handles very bad conditions. The inner tube though smells like rubber in case you have a problem with it. The heavy duty cover made of nylon canvas also plays a part to protect it in bad weather conditions.

Pros

  • Large with a diameter of 42’’ and able to hold up to 4300lb so it can be used by an adult and child comfortably
  • The sled can absorb shock and impact very well. It is able to withstand the impacts of rocks and other debris. It has a reduced chance of puncture.
  • A high-quality pair of soft nylon handles for a secure ride and assured safety
  • The detachable pulley tow rope makes it easier to pull it uphill and it can be comfortably pulled by a dog
  • Its IceVex cold resistant treatment means that it can work even in the most rigged weather.

Cons

  • It is quite pricey as compared to other snow tube sleds selling at this price
  • It can be quite heavy for a kid to carry uphill
  • The two ropes can rip off if used forcefully

What to look for in an inflatable snow tube

  1. Material of the Snow tube

The material is very important to determine the durability of this sled. Most heavy duty materials are able to last a bit longer than the other materials. This is what determines the durability of the snow tube. A good material is able to handle more weight and it can absorb impacts such as debris that can be on the slopes.

  1. The weight and size of the user

If you are intending to get a snow tube sled that will be used by both adults and kids then you need to get one that is able to accommodate bigger sizes. One that will be used by kids only can be smaller in terms of diameter and it does not have to have a large tensile strength.

  1. The type and quality of handles

Get yourself a snow tube that has handles to make the ride safer for you. One that has no handles will mean that you can easily lose control. Gripping on to the sides can also be tiring and uncomfortable. The handles can either be sewn-in or grip handles that are mostly made of plastic. A comfortable one is a better choice.

  1. How towable it is

There are different kinds of the market. Some have a provision for towing while others such as Tube in a box you have to carry them uphill every time you get to the bottom. Get one that you can comfortably tow making it lightweight.

  1. The thickness of the bottom

The bottom of a snow tube is able to determine how fast and how far it is going to move. A thick bottom makes it resistant to wear and tear. It can also be modified with some anti-friction technology to make it more resistant to friction

  1. Its ability to remain functional in very cold weather

Some snow tubes crack when they are exposed to very cold weather.  During winter the temperatures can go as low as -40 degrees and you should be able to still slide in this weather. Some are treated with a cold resistant treatment that is able to protect them from cracking

  1. How easy and fast it is to Inflate and deflate it

Kids are not the most patient people and when you keep them waiting for long when inflating can be a problem. The size of the valve will determine how fast it can be inflated and deflated too. It is also important to know if you have to use an air pump or you can simply use a hairdryer. The easier it is to inflate it the better

Tips and tricks for Snow Tubing

  • Always take off the cover of the snow tube on storage

In order to preserve the snow tube; it is important to store the inner tube and the cover separately. If they are not, mold or mildew will form in these spaces due to the moisture trapped from the snow.

  • When not in use ensure the tube is deflated

Keeping the tube always blown up will reduce the life of the tube. It might be convenient for some homes to have it inflated but this normally places pressure on the seams of the tubes causing them to easily burst.

  • Take air off the tube before getting to a warm room

As science explains, air expands when exposed to heat. The same happens to the air in the tube which might cause it to burst. Otherwise, find the valve stem and reduce the air.

  • Avoid exposing it to direct sunlight for long

If it is exposed to sunlight for long, the material will begin degrading due to the UV rays from the sun. If you have to put it in the sun, you can flip it and have the bottom facing up.

  • Store It dry to preserve the material

Ensure any time you want to store the snow tube you wipe it dry. Every time it is stored when wet it is going to affect the integrity of this material over time.

  • Use a rope as a tow if a snow tube doesn’t have one

Some snow tubes do not incorporate pulley tow ropes to tow uphill. You can get a normal rope and tie it on the loops of the tube and use it to tow it.

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Best Water Shoes for Men and Women

Best Water Shoes for Men and Women: Going for a hike, kayaking, fishing or boating? Are you a fan of hiking and find yourself walking on some wet terrain making the entire process stressful? You don’t want to mess up your regular shoes on water or hurt your feet by walking barefoot. The water shoes are the perfect shoes for you. Not only do they make you craftier in your activities but they are also protective to your feet.  A while back people accessed the wet areas when fishing or kayaking barefoot and it was highly likely to step on something that could be harmful to your feet.  Gone are the days when the water shoes were expected to be some unsightly and impractical beasts that just helped you maneuver through the water. They are now beautiful, evolved into some utilitarian footwear that works as a combination of sneakers and that of sandals. The next time you are going for your adventure and you are sure that there is a high possibility that you will access some soaked terrains; then make sure you have packed a good pair of water shoes.

The Merrell Company is a powerhouse when it comes to providing footwear that is both attractive and highly functional. They have this All Out Blaze, Capra Rapid and Chameleon prime stretch line of water shoes, for both men and women.

 

Water shoe Shoe design Editor rating Top features
Merrell Men’s All Out Blaze Aero Sport 

 

Lace-up closed with secure laces 4.5  Vibram sole with 5mm lug depth

Omni-fit lacing system

Molded tpu heel counter

M Select FRESH odor prevention

Cushioned Unifly midsole

Merrell Men’s All Out Blaze Sieve

 

 

Sieve slip-on sandal style with bungee cord lace 4.6 Vibram sole with a 3mm lug depth

Water shedding sieve with a waxy leather upper

Merrell Men’s Chameleon Prime Stretch Waterproof

 

Lace-up closed with bungee cord lace 3.9 M Select GRIP outsole

Bellows tongue

Nylon webbing heel tab with an air cushioned heel

Waterproof with M Select DRY membrane and durable leather with synthetic mesh

 

Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Sieve

 

Sieve slip-on sandal style with bungee cord lace 4.5 Antimicrobial M-Select Fresh lining

Water shedding

protective midsoles and toe caps

Flexible collar for easy slip in and out

Spaces on the side for breathability

Merrell Women’s Capra Rapid Water-Friendly 

 

Lace-up closed with secure laces 4.2 ESS arch shank

Synthetic mesh upper

Perforated EVA removable footbed

Cord and lock lacing system for quick fit

 

Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Aero Sport

 

Lace-up closed with secure laces 4.5 Vibram TC5+ outsole with 5mm lug depth

Molded TPU heel counter

Omni-fit lacing system for glove like fit

Bellows tongue

Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Sieve 

 

Sieve slip-on sandal style with bungee cord lace 4.5 Water shedding

Heel measurement of 1’’

Wide toe in toe box

M Select FRESH odor prevention

Breathable synthetic textile and synthetic sole

 

Merrell Men’s All Out Blaze Aero Sports Hiking Shoe

I particularly love this shoe which comes in black and red because you are not limited to just water sports but can also be used for outdoor activities such as hiking a forest trail. If you are looking for a lightweight, breathable and a shoe that can work on different surfaces, then this is the shoe for you. This is an attractive shoe with beautiful branding details.

It has a lot of breathable mesh lining that lets your feet breath in the scorching summer sun. However, the mesh side panels are very thin and if looking for strong hiking shoes then you need to be aware of this. They will help you to easily traverse the rough terrains with the tenacious Vibram rubber outsoles fitted with 5mm lugs.

These are very comfortable with normal to slightly narrow fitting. It will fit perfectly according to your foot structure. A Merrell Omni-fit lacing system giving you a glove-like fitting.

Pros

  • These have a wide toe box so you don’t need to order a size up if you have a wide foot
  • Good traction on the trail and especially when getting in and out of water surfaces
  • The protective Unifly midsole bring about efficiency by absorbing terrain
  • Easy to keep debris out due to their Bellows tongue under the laces
  • Added stability by the molded TPU heel counter, a piece of leather forming the back, used to stiffen the material around the heel increasing foot support.
  • Uses the M select DRY fresh technology to make sure the shoe remains dry. It uses the moisture-wicking technology to ensure the shoe remains odor free

Cons

  • The breathable mesh panels on the sides are very thin if you are looking for a tough shoe.

Merrell Men’s All Out Blaze Sieve Water Shoe

This beautiful sieve water shoe which is made of a synthetic sole and a durable leather upper is made with a slip-on sandal style. This makes it easy to slip on and off. This water shedding water shoe is just perfect as it performs equally well on the ground and on water. The waterproof upper fabric helps to dry quickly and is light if you encounter a soaker.

These water shoes have perforated EVA removable footbeds. This is very important to control the moisture in the shoe and also help with drainage. It is easy to remove these footbeds when cleaning the shoes too to ensure complete cleanliness. These padding also make it very comfortable. With its outfitted 3mm lug depth, the synthetic sole is rough enough to be able to transverse rough grounds and still have a good grip on the water surfaces.

Pros

  • It has anti-microbial agents in their inner sole to reduce amount of odor
  • The collars are made of Lycra neoprene stretch which is meant to secure the ankle area
  • Vibram outsoles that flex nicely and grip well both on dry and wet surfaces. This sole will also last for a long time
  • Offer secure footing and gives good amount of support as you go through your adventure
  • The elastic heel is supported with inelastic fabric that keeps it solid enough in rough terrains

Cons

  • With the open back that is elastic, they don’t offer an all-around support
  • The large holes on the side meant for breathability also allow sediments to enter which can be uncomfortable.

Merrell Men’s Chameleon Prime Stretch Waterproof Hiking Shoe

Are you looking for a tough water shoe that is able to withstand the hardships of a hike and still work well on the wet surfaces? This is the shoe for you. With a durable leather and a synthetic mesh upper, it processes the waterproof properties and still the leather will protect it from being easily torn.

The most outstanding feature of this shoe is its M-Select GRIP on the outsole. This provides a durable traction on the rugged ground and it makes the shoe very attractive. Featuring an M-Select DRY membrane, this shoe remains waterproof no matter the surface. This shoe is able remain odorless even in sweat due to the M Select FRESH technology in their mesh lining.

Their heel tab is fitted with nylon webbing and cord loops that make it easier to pull the shoe on and off.  The heel is air cushioned for more comfort and excellent shock absorption. However the inserts of the shoe tend to come out with your foot which can be quite annoying.

Pros

  • Toe guard which protects the toes from underwater obstructions such as falling and rolling objects
  • Its removable perforated EVA footbed is treated with antimicrobial to keep bacteria away
  • Comfortable with a 4mm sole lug depth
  • Cinching stretch closure ensures that it ties tightly for great arch support
  • The neoprene sleeve around the ankle helps keep dirt and pebbles from getting in the shoes

Cons

  • They are rigid and when worn for hiking over a long period of time they are a bit heavy
  • The leather and mesh act convenient for its durability but it makes it hard for some people to get it on and may have to use a shoe horn

Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Sieve Water Shoe

These Sieve sandals that are specially designed for women are just the perfect shoes for those water activities

Pros

  • Sheds water fast when accessing wet surfaces
  • Easy to slip in and out
  • Antimicrobial M-Select Fresh lining to prevent harboring of bad feet smells
  • Have a Vibram outsole that is flexible enough and grips so doesn’t slip on any surface
  • Have protective midsoles and toe caps
  • Glove-like fitting which is good for any shoe structure

Cons

  • Easy for pebbles and dirt to get in the shoes through the spaces on the sides
  • The open elastic back does not offer enough support

Merrell Women’s Capra Rapid Water-Friendly Hiking Shoe

The main feature of this shoe is its ESS arch shark, this shark makes the middle portion of the shoe more resistant to torsion and flexion by stiffening the shoe under the arch. This makes the shoe perfect for running and hiking. With this feature incorporated with its waterproof properties makes this shoe a very good for both water activities and hiking.  Lightweight more like trail runners

Pros

  • Easy to control the moisture and the drainage of the shoes due to the removable footbed
  • A nice looking boot well designed specifically for the ladies
  • Has solid support enough for rocky hikes but still flexible enough to feel comfortable.
  • Quick secure fit due to its cord and lock lacing system
  • Quite breathable due to its mesh upper
  • Very comfortable due to its padding and the rubber foam and mesh

Cons                                                                                                                    

  • It might hurt your thumbs getting them on due to the lacing system that is already secure
  • Can be slippery when wet

 Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Aero Sports Hiking Water Shoe

This speed hiker is well known for its ability to move through terrace seamlessly. With a Vibram TC5+ outsole, this shoe has a good traction control. As compared to the Aero sport for men; this shoe is a bit shorter in height but it still has a glove-like fitting. This makes the shoe very comfortable when taking the long treks.

If you want a shoe that you will not worry about sand getting in the shoes when walking through the wet beach then this is the shoe. With its Bellows’ tongue then you can control the debris from getting in. Looking for a multi-purpose shoe for both hiking and water sports this is the shoe for you. Its platform is well balanced and the heel doesn’t fall drastically.

To ensure that the foot is naturally positioned, the arch is slightly elevated this way the foot is able to get arch support. The entire body is well positioned which makes the body well postured and you can with a straight back. This is good for your back.  This shoe makes for a soft stride due to its Unify midsole and able to absorb terrain . Has a dye cut rubber and a breathable mesh lining treated with M-Select FRESH odor control to ensure they smell good at all times.

Pros

  • The heel counter which holds the heel securely is made of the Molded TPU. This ensures that the foot does not move independently but moves together to reduce blisters
  • Has a breathable mesh on its upper which ensures free circulation of air
  • With a slightly deeper lug of 5mm, it feels very stable on the rough ground
  • They are lightweight and it is easy to move around in without getting very tired
  • Multi-purpose; can also be used to run errands since its shaft is neither too nor too high. It has about 152 mm from the arch up to the ankle

Cons

  • Can be a problem if you have a high arch as the feet can get sore fast due to its high arch
  • The mesh panels on the side are quite thin and it can be discouraging if you are looking for a tough shoe

Merrell Women’s All Out Blaze Sieve Water Shoe

Perfect for a good water sport, this shoe is made in the way that it will drain water easily and able to pull the tab to be able to easily slip it on and off. Built with a hiking design; it is equally able to handle both the dry and wet environments. In a female fitting, it is well designed for walking or running. These sandals with a Vibram sole that is mostly found in walking boots are able to grip the ground well. The fit is able to remain snug due to the stretchy neoprene collar.

Pros

  • There is room for wide toe in the toe box
  • Perfect fit and don’t need to order a size bigger
  • Easy to slip in and out without having to untie the shoelaces
  • With the M Select Fresh technology, this shoe is able to remain odor free even when used for an extensive period of time.
  • Has a protective midsole and toe caps for comfort

Cons

  • The leather looks faded after using it for just a few times
  • Hard to go for kayaking in them as the spaces are too large. They let pebbles and other debris to get in the shoe
  • They are not as comfortable as the front toes may easily rub against the inside after some extensive use.

Why Should you Wear Water Shoes

Why would you need to wear water shoes? What makes these shoes any different from the other shoes and what advantage do they have? When you want to perform at your best at any sporty activity having the right attire is very vital. Especially the footwear can determine how well you are protected and how well you will perform.

Water sports are very risky and you cannot just wear any shoe in the water lest you can easily fall and hurt yourself. Traction is very important and walking barefoot is not an option. There are very many benefits of water shoes that you will not find in other footwear.

Water shoes are built to be lightweight and comfortable to be able to handle to be strenuous activities such as hiking. There are a number of reasons why you would invest in buying a good pair of water shoes as opposed to sticking to the traditional shoes which could be more affordable than a water shoe

  1. Front toe protection

When maneuvering through water it is very easy to stumble upon scrapes and so many other things that you cannot see under the water. As opposed to just walking barefoot or wearing a pair of flipflops, a good pair of water shoes will prevent ripped-off toenails, stubbed toes and prevent scrapes. Its closed-toe design is one of the top features that make a water shoe capable of optimum toe protection.

  1. Traction

Water shoes provide a great traction on both the dry and wet surfaces. When you get a good design pair of water shoes, it uses a nice technology such as the M select GRIP that ensures that the shoe grips the ground and it’s

  1. Lightweight

Any pair of shoes when submerged in water and mud or when walking on a soaked surface will become very heavy and hard to walk in. The water shoes are built using a material that is able to efficiently drain water when submerged allowing them to remain lightweight. Most of these shoes are designed with multiple drain holes which quickly disposes of water. When surfing or kayaking, having a soaked shoe can make the entire activity very strenuous.

  1. Ultimate feet protection

Most of the water activities will involve walking through unforeseen circumstances. Although not all water shoes have the same design they all have a thick sole that is able to protect the feet from the sharp rocks that may be found underwater. These shoes also offer a good top of the feet protection as compared to sandals. This feature comes in handy to prevent bruises that occur when items fall on the feet. When walking through a varied terrain, then you need a shoe that will protect your feet.

  1. Easy to walk well in and out water

 Most shoes may work well on dry surfaces and their traction is only good until when the surface becomes wet and it is hard to walk without sliding. Most water sports will involve constantly walking in and out of the water and a normal hiking shoe will not be able to work well on water. Their traction and design are what makes easy to work on these surfaces. These shoes will easily convert into a limited version of a hiking shoe but have to wear a well-padded hiking sock because it lacks enough cushioning inside,. Make sure the feet are also very dry to prevent blisters.

  1. Doesn’t get squishy when wet

Most shoes when wet they get squishy and it becomes very uncomfortable to walk in them. These shoes are able to drain water just as well as sandals do but their construction is able to prevent the fabric from absorbing water. They are able to dry very fast.

  1. Easy to wear and take off the shoes

Most shoes are made with a collar that can be hard to wear and remove especially when wet. Most water shoes are constructed in a way that it is very easy to slip them on. They are also built to fit like a glove which makes them easy to work with

  1. Do not harbor bad odor when worn for a long time

Unlike the gum boots which are mostly used to access dump places, water shoes can be worn for a long period without getting bad feet smells. There are designs of water shoes which are not designed to shed water but instead they remain waterproof when they get into a soaked place. There is no need to be confined to bad smelling boots which are also quite heavy and you can get a lightweight waterproof water shoe.

What to Look for in Water Shoes

 Look for a shoe with good traction

This is the main feature of a good water shoe to ensure that it is safe to work with these shoes in water. Make sure you test the outsole on a wet surface to see how good the grip is.

A good water shoe will remain lightweight when wet

Ensure you check the material that has made the upper of the shoe. It should be made of synthetic mesh material which you can be sure that it drains fast. In the case of waterproof water shoes, get one with a special kind of leather that does not allow water to get in alongside with the mesh.

A quality material that can withstand the harsh water conditions

foot, that covers the entire foot. It should be able to balance the temperature of the wearer by drying quickly for the feet to remain warm

Check for a Thick sole

Invest in a shoe that you will be assured that your feet will remain protected no matter where it lands. There is a possibility of encountering sharp objects and it should be thick enough. A thicker sole is more durable and will protect you from hot surfaces when out of the water. If you don’t intend to completely submerge your feet in the water, like in the case of boating and sailing, find a shoe with good heel cushioning as you have to be on your feet most of the time.

Get a shoe with a toe guard

This comes out as a standard feature for a water shoe. This is what differentiates it from any other sandal. The toe guard will make the feet more protected and more comfortable

Know the shoe size and how if it matches your normal shoe size

Some water shoe brands do not come with an allowance for a wide toe. Make sure you look to see if you need to order for a size larger in case you have a wide toe. Some shoes also come with quite a narrow fitting and can be uncomfortable for some people.

The shoe style of your preference

Are you looking for a shoe for ocean swimming and kayaking or do you need a tough water shoe that can also be used as a hiking shoe? Then the style of the shoe will also determine the functionality. These shoes come in a variety of styles. There are the lace-up styles which are perfect for more intense outdoor activities such as hiking while the slip-on water shoes will be good for intense water activities and a perfect walk in the ocean. There is also a variation in lace designs with the bungee-cord lace for the easing slip-on and a lace-up style which is more secure.

Are water shoes good for hiking?

Water shoes inhibit the properties of most hiking shoes with the exception of the quick drying and better traction. However, these shoes only possess limited properties of a hiking shoe. They are a great choice when going for short hikes because of the comfortable and breathable fitting and the quick drying properties. This is a good feature especially when you have a possibility of hiking through some wet surfaces. Some water shoes, however, utilize elastic in the heel which stretches too loosely and this means that it will not keep the foot in position when walking through steep hills. in a good pair of hiking socks that will save you lots of pain from the blistering.

Best times to wear water shoes

  • Kayaking and Paddlesports

With good traction, a good water shoe is able to grip on the wet surfaces without slipping. These shoes also are lightweight when wet and are water shedding to ensure that they dry very fast.

  • Fishing and boating

Fishing in a boat will involve a lot of splashing of water and there is need to have a shoe that will dry quickly as well as make sure your feet remain dry. A water shoe with good heel cushioning is also good for fishing as it involves standing for long periods of time

  • When hiking on a wet terrain

Make sure you get a good lace-up water shoe when taking a hike in a wet area to ensure that your feet remain dry and the shoes do not get heavy and squishy after some time. Water shoes possess the qualities of a hiking shoe due to its comfortability, breathability and the good traction on the sole.

  • Aquatic fitness

The aquatic fitness involves working out in water. A regular shoe will not be good on the wet surfaces and as it involves a lot of movements, a good water shedding shoe with good grip will be very good.

  • Swimming in Rivers, oceans and out-of-pool protection

When taking a swim in an area where you are not sure of the things that you might step on, the water shoes can be very good. This is due to their thick soles and the toe guards to protect your toes. Their water-shedding property will also make it easy to walk on the beach without having squishy shoes.

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Best I-Pilot Trolling Motors

Best Inflatable Sports Trolling Motor

Best I-Pilot Trolling Motors: When you go out with your boat, anywhere and at any point in time, you want to do it easily, quickly and comfortably. Aside from the fishing, for example, you want to enjoy using your boat. Ever heard people speak of their boats as if they were beings. “I took her out today and she was marvelous.”  This is where a trolling motor comes in and becomes extremely important. Further than that, you will need to get a trolling motor that is compatible with the features on your boat. It is important for one to have all the aspects of their boat in mind before purchasing a trolling motor. Once that is achieved, then you get down to the business of choosing a trolling motor that will serve your specific needs when you are on the lake fishing, for example. This is a review of an array of I Pilot trolling motors from Minn Kota that would possibly serve an array of needs. Read on, you just might find one that will be the perfect fit for what you are looking for.

 

Motor brand Voltage option Thrust power Shaft length Best for Editor rating
Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth

 

24V 80 lbs 60 inches Saltwater conditions 4.6
Minn Kota Ultrex 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth 24V 80 lbs 52 inches Easy to steer 4.7
Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth 36V 112 lbs 60 inches Saltwater conditions 5.0
Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2 with I-Pilot link and Bluetooth 36V 112 lbs 60 inches Easy to use 4.9
Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs with I-Pilot link and Bluetooth 24V 80 lbs 60 inches Ease to control due to steer steering 4.6

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 is especially designed for saltwater conditions. The motor makes it very easy to control your boat. It does not compromise on giving you the best boating experience.

This motor uses a 24 volt system giving your boat 80lbs of thrust at the end of a 60 inch shaft. The motor’s voltage capacity of 24V is on the average level of voltage capacity. It enables the motor have a longer running time since it provides the same thrust while drawing less amperage. You can actually fish for a longer period of time. Its 60 inch shaft length is a bit longer than the standard 42 inches. It will, however, be extremely suitable for the big water specialist that have a longer bow or stern.

The motor has a saltwater advantage. Saltwater is known to have different species, boat types and challenges. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra was built just for that. Its riptide’s premium grade alloys, designed for saltwater, are fortified by a multi step cleaning process. The motor stops corrosion before it even starts while packing a lot of performance and power at the same time. The motor’s power trim allows you to adjust its depth quite easily in these waters depending on the changing conditions. This is a pretty good package deal for a saltwater trolling motor.

Its’ motor can operate on the I-Pilot wireless system accessory. This GPS-powered navigation system is another great aspect about this motor that promotes easier boat control. It ensures that your boat remains on its path and sometimes anchor it. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 also has the auto stow and deploy feature which greatly eases your burden. You can automatically get your motor in and out of the water with the I-Pilot remote. It gives you the freedom to concentrate on your fishing rather than maneuvering to set up your boat in a certain position or anchoring it for that matter.

The digital maximizer on the motor provides up to five times longer running time on a single charge. This simply means your trolling motor is engineered to run for longer on one single charge. So even if you operate your boat at lower speeds, you still get full torque to lag the 80 lbs. Doing this will also extend your motor’s  battery life.

Pros

  • Suitable for saltwater.
  • I-Pilot system fastens navigation.
  • Motor runs longer cause of digital maximizer.
  • Durable battery life.

Cons

  • Sets off bow of boat a bit further than needed.

Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 52inches i-Pilot and Bluetooth

Minn Kota Ultrex 80

This is another trolling motor version available amongst the Minn Kota series weighing 84 pounds. This motor is designed to reduce all the work for you and allow you enjoy taking your boat out and going fishing.

The Minn Kota Ultrex US 52 inches I-Pilot has a 24V voltage capacity which is average amperage. It is just about enough for the 80lbs thrust power. The 24V voltage capacity enables the motor run for longer periods of time. Its 52 inch shaft length is a bit longer than the standard 42 inches. It is quite suitable for individuals with big bows or sterns.

This motor is user friendly because of the electronic assist steering. With the power steering feature made available, you can forget about foot fatigue. It is the same heel/ toe pedal steering that anglers prefer about traditional cable steer motors. It has been made easier by power steering. Power steering makes it easier to make steering adjustments. This reduces the frequent foot fatigue and steering effort making Ultrex the most responsive motor. The power steering feature ensures that you have a very smooth ride on that fishing trip. The steering lock feature available with this motor, maintains the motor head in the direction it was last left in. No more worry about your motor swaying with the tide and currents of the water.

The Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 52 inches also offers all the benefits of the I-Pilot GPS based navigation system. This feature will come in handy especially for individuals with hummingbird fish finders. It allows automatic control and steering of your boat. A touch screen remote is available to help in steering the boat while on autopilot. You can check out your battery level on the remote as it has a battery meter display.

Pros

  • Very easy to use and steer
  • Smooth running mechanism.
  • The I-Pilot allows for great control and smoother rides.
  • Steering lock maintains the motor head in
  • Works well for its price range.

Cons

  • The touch screen remote is an optional purchase. You will have to pay extra to get the touch screen remote.

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 is the greatest option for big water enthusiasts with frequent and long boat expeditions. All its features combined are designed to give you an ultimate boating experience.

The motor uses a 36V option. This is the highest voltage capacity available. It enables you fish for a longer period of time and they give out more thrust power allowing for smoother rides while on the water. This voltage option is better suited for boats that are more than 16 feet long. It ensures they run efficiently and smoothly. Another feature found on the Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 is the digital maximizer. It provides up to five times longer run time on one single charge.

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 has a shaft that measures up to 60 inches which is quite suitable for big boats likely to have this motor. It ensures the angler’s electric motor does not cavitate and spook all the fish away.

This particular trolling motor has the auto stow and deploy that makes your fishing experience much better.  Auto stow and deploy allows you get your motor in and out of the water using the included I-Pilot remote. In addition, this motor has a power trim, which allows you easily raise and lower the depth of the motor with the push of a button on your remote. This is suitable especially in changing conditions.

This motor can be steered via the automatic I-pilot remote that works via Bluetooth. It allows automatic control and steering of your boat. A touch screen remote is available to help in steering the boat while on autopilot. You can check out your battery level on the remote as it has a battery meter display.

Saltwater has different species and challenges. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 has a saltwater advantage. It’s riptide’s premium grade alloys are fortified by a multi step cleaning process. This ensures that your motor’s material remains durable.

Pros

  • Runs for longer time.
  • Smoother mechanism.
  • Longer lasting battery so longer fishing trips.

Cons

  • Sets off bow of boat a bit further than needed.

Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2

Minn Kota Ultrex 112

This is the hallmark trolling motor of all the Minn Kota versions. The improvement of its’ previous features coupled with the addition of new ones, will make the ultrex the smoothest, most responsive motor you will ever drive.

It retains the same heel/ toe steering you are used to but it has been made easier with power steering. The power steering prevents the occurrence of foot fatigue by reducing the effort applied. It ends up making your boat driving a comfortable experience. The motor also has a steering lock that will ensure the motor head is pointed in the direction it was originally left in. There will be no wobbling or swaying of your motor with the water’s currents.

The Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2 weighing twenty pounds, continues to reduce your work and ensure you have an easy time. It does this courtesy of the lift assist design that raise the motor by itself. You barely lift a finger to start raising your motor manually. Ease and comfort all in one.

The I-Pilot link integrates the GPS system enabling you to navigate in any direction you please in your boat. Its trolling motor communicates and delivers automatic boat control. You relax and let your boat move on autopilot.

Pros

  • User friendly
  • Smooth mechanism so a smooth ride.

Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs

Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 60" Shaft Link 80 lbs Thrust 24V Trolling Motor with i-Pilot Link & Bluetooth

The Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs trolling motor is the average boats hallmark of trolling motors. With all its previous models features improved, it has been designed to make your boat expeditions as easy and comfortable as possible.

With a voltage capacity of 24V allows the Minn Kota Ultrex motor a thrust level of 80. This coupled with the 60 inches shaft is a great combination for big water enthusiasts.

The motor has an I-pilot link and Bluetooth function. This delivers automatic bat control directly from the I-pilot remote via a fast and secure Bluetooth connection. You can use the ever familiar and popular technology of either your phone or tab to steer your boat. How cool. This makes it so easy for you to control your boat automatically. The I-pilot delivers comfortable precise speed steering. The motor has a battery meter as well that is displayed on the I-pilot link remote control LCD screen. You are able to keep an eye on how much battery life is remaining.

This trolling motor has the power steering feature: the same heel/toe steering you used before but made easier. The power steering reduces your steering effort as well as foot fatigue as you try controlling the boat. This makes the ride the smoothest because of how responsive the motor is. The motor has a steering lock which keeps the motor head pointed in the direction it was last left in. So no wobbling or swaying of your boat courtesy of an unstable steering.

You do not have to struggle with lifting the motor. This comes with a lift assist design so you can raise your motor without so much as raising a finger.

Pros

  • User-friendly and easy to use.
  • Suitable for rough weather conditions.

What is an I pilot/Bluetooth/trolling motor?

Trolling Motors

This is a self-contained unit affixed to an angler’s boat at either the bow or astern. It includes an electric motor, propeller and controls. Trolling motors that are not electric, use gasoline. A gasoline-powered outboard on a boat, if not the vessel’s primary source of propulsion, can be referred to as a trolling motor. They aid with precision maneuvering of the boat to enable the angler cast his bait to where the fish are located. Trolling motors have advanced in their design and sophistication over the years. They have grown to require less of manual effort in order to operate them. Some of the trolling motors will list standard I-pilot as a feature while others will list the I-pilot link.

The standard I-Pilot is a GPS-based trolling system. While in the water, anglers can use the I-Pilot or the I-Pilot Link systems for easier boat control and positioning. It allows you the freedom to focus your attention on presenting bait and catching loads of fish. The standard I-Pilot features, especially those of Minn Kota motors, include:

  • ITrack Record/Playback.
  • Advanced Autopilot.
  • Cruise Control.
  • Co-Pilot.
  • Remote: The newer version comes with a larger LCD screen and more intuitive controls.
  • Reinvented Spot Lock: Newer versions will have newer hardware and software algorithms combining to create the most accurate electronic GPS anchor ever.
  • Jog: This enables you to move your current spot lock position to the left or right, forward or backward, with the simple push of a button.

The new I-Pilot remote also includes:

  • Rugged, soft grip design on the remote. There is no dropping of this remote anytime soon.
  • 33% larger, full sunlight-viewable LCD screen. In some motors, it might be an additional purchase.
  • New soft keys for easier and expanded menu navigation.
  • Power supplied by 3 AAA batteries, with an anticipated battery lifetime of approximately longer fishing season.

What is The I-Pilot Link in a Trolling Motor

The i-pilot link integrates the GPS enabling you to navigate in any direction you please in your boat. Its trolling motor to communicate and deliver automatic boat control. In addition to that, the i-pilot link, with the help of a Lake master app, will allow you follow any depth contour you chose automatically .An i-pilot link installs quickly and easily. All you have to do afterward, is to replace the top of your i-pilot link compatible trolling motor head, activate your remote. And you are set to start fishing. The i-pilot link can facilitate quite a number of things. These include locking onto spots, learning and retracing paths and depth contours. This enables you to create a custom route. The i-pilot link will mark your current spot, use its records of your movement, retrace your steps and form a route of that. That is quite convenient. It would do you great service if you get a trolling motor with this GPS fishing system. You get to enjoy the one activity you came out for without hustling yourself for direction and fishing spots, for example. You sit back and let the i-pilot link take automatic control of steering your boat. The difference basically comes down to the fact that the I-Pilot Link has an extra number of features than the I-Pilot. All new I-Pilot Link systems will include:

  • Remote: Compact design with larger full-color touchscreen LCD.
  • Reinvented Spot Lock: New hardware and software algorithms combine to create the most accurate GPS anchor ever.
  • Jog: Move your current Spot Lock position 5 feet to the left or right, forward or backward, by simply pushing a button.
  • Phone App : Trolling motor controls and software updates (iOS and Android)
  • Circle: Select a position, set in an offset distance and travel around the selected location in a circular direction at the speed of your choice. How amazing and pretty easy can fishing get?
  • Virtual Remote: Control speed, steering, Spot Lock and Advanced Autopilot directly from your boat.

Its’ older features include:

  • Copilot
  • Cruise control
  • Advanced Autopilot
  • iTrack record and playback
  • Backtrack
  • Follow the contour and contour offset

The new I-Pilot Link remote features include:

  • Compact soft grip design that fits better in the user’s hand.
  • Large, full color, sunlight-viewable LCD screen.
  • Dual Interface Control.
  • Touch screen user interface with intuitive, customizable menu.
  • Full function keypad control.
  • Integrated, rechargeable battery, with an anticipated battery charge of approximately one fishing day.

There are no major systematic differences between the standard i-pilot and the i-pilot link. They vary in small capacities. I-pilot link, for example, has extra features that include the Spot Lock, which can store up t 2500 different spot lock positions. In terms of iTracks, the i-Pilot link can store up to 66 different tracks. The i-Pilot link also has a depth contour feature and cruise control. The choice is yours to make, on which would be most suitable. Most individuals have preferred the standard i-Pilot for a long time citing there is nothing special about the i-Pilot link that would cost a decent amount more. However, those who have used the link say there is so much to do with the kit, it changes the way you fish. It is only a matter of discovery, learning and attempting to use.

Bluetooth Perks in a Trolling Motor

The Bluetooth wireless communication between a remote and the trolling motor controller is the determining force of all I-Pilot and I-Pilot Link system. Newer versions of the I-Pilot and I-Pilot Link system extend the controls to a phone. Technology is surely taking over and making it easier for all of us. These newer features include:

  • Most used motor controls: Prop on/ off, Prop speed, High-speed bypass, Spot-Lock, and Autopilot.
  • Compatible with Android and iOS devices.
  • Software updates
  • Wireless product registration.
,

Best Dry Bags

Best Dry Bags

Best dry bags: Dry bags are waterproof bags meant to keep all your valuables dry. Often, they are used during kayaking, canoeing, rafting, fishing, snorkeling, camping and extreme sports such as skiing and snowboarding. Although all dry bags have a similar watertight closing system, it is essential to pick the best for that camping trip.

I love being outdoors and over the years, I have had my share of dry bags. Some were great and some just didn’t cut it. Here are five of the best dry bags I have come across as well some more useful information about dry bags.

Best Dry Bags

Heavy Duty Vinyl Waterproof Dry Bag

Heavy Duty Vinyl Waterproof Dry Bag

Waterproof Dry Bags Set of three

Waterproof Dry Bags Set of three

Premium Waterproof Dry Bags for Kayaking, Camping, Boating

Adventure Lion Premium Waterproof Dry Bag

Dry Bag Waterproof Roll Top Sack

Dry Bag Waterproof Roll Top Sack

Waterproof Floating Dry Gear Bags for Boating, Kayaking, Fishing, Rafting, Swimming and Camping

Waterproof Floating Sport Dry Gear Bags

Rating: 4.5/5Rating: 4.7/5Rating: 4.7/5Rating: 4.6/5Rating: 4.7/5
Color Options: 7Color Options: 6Color Options: 8Color Options: 4Color Options: 9
Material: Heavy Duty Vinyl PolyesterMaterial: 500D TarpaulinMaterial: 500D PVCMaterial: 500D PVCMaterial: Tough Nylon
Bonus: Optional Phone CaseBonus: Double Seal, Set of 3Bonus: Floats, Lifetime WarrantyBonus: See Threw WindowBonus: Waterproof Phone Case
Sizes Available: 5L, 10L, 15L, 20L, 30L, 40L, 55LSizes Available: 5L, 10L, 20L, 35LSizes Available: 5L, 10L, 20L, 40LSizes Available: 10L, 20L, 30LSizes Available: 2L, 5L, 10L, 20L, 30L, 40L
Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $

Scroll to the right to view all items in table

Heavy Duty Vinyl Waterproof Dry Bag

Heavy Duty Vinyl Waterproof Dry Bag

This waterproof bag is made of heavy-duty vinyl polyester and is suitable for quick submersion. However, it is not intended for full submersion, and your valuables may not remain dry should the bag stay in the water for long.

Should you decide to go camping with this, you can be sure that accidental thrusts and sticks and sharp rocks will not get any punctures into the bag. For those who are using a dry bag for the first time, it comes with using instructions printed on the top. When getting the white one, you will want to be mindful of how you use it as mine stained pretty quickly.

Pros

  • It is durable, wipe clean and easy to store away
  • It is very sturdy
  • The buckle and strap are of good quality and work as intended
  • It has a return and money back guarantee should you be dissatisfied

Cons

  • The vinyl comes off after some time in the water
  • The shoulder strap is very stiff and rough

Waterproof Dry Bags Set of three

Waterproof Dry Bags Set of three

 

I especially loved this product as it comes in three; a dry bag, a waist pouch and a phone case which can all be submerged in the water for swimming, kayaking, and boating.

Unlike the traditional roll-top dry bag, this one comes with a seal to protect your valuables when wholly submerged or continuously splashed. The waist pouch is amazingly versatile, and you can wear it as a waist- pack, cross-body pack or even a shoulder bag. It is ideal for small valuable items such as your car keys, credit cards or wallets. The phone case has a transparent window which allows you to take pictures and videos, text and even talk on the phone while still inside the case!

Pros

  • It has double closure seals making it twice as safe as other dry bags
  • It is sturdy, lightweight and tear resistant
  • It comes in a 3 in 1 set
  • The adjustable, detachable shoulder strap allows you to carry it effortlessly

Cons

  • The ziplock makes it difficult to close the bag
  • The bags have an overpowering latex smell
  • The phone case gets a cloudy film making pictures look distorted

Premium Waterproof Dry Bags for Kayaking, Camping, Boating

Premium Waterproof Dry Bags for Kayaking, Camping, Boating

These dry bags from Adventure Lions offer toughness plus comfort. Unlike other dry bags, they stay soft and flexible even in the coldest weather. The best thing about these bags is that they come with a Hassle Free Lifetime warranty. The dry bags come in four convenient sizes which have different features. The 5L and 10L have adjustable straps, the 20L has an added handle while the 40L has an added strap making it a backpack. They all have hardened anchor points which allow you to float the bag behind your water raft or hang it off your hiking pack. Thus making this one of the best dry bags on the market.

Pros

  • It has a reinforced quick release polymer buckle
  • It has a reliable roll-top closure
  • It is made of sturdy enough material to resist all forms of abuse
  • It features quick-detach adjustable shoulder straps

Cons

  • The handle is loosely attached and comes out quickly
  • It is not entirely waterproof as some water seeps into the bag

Dry Bag Waterproof Roll Top Sack

Dry Bag Waterproof Roll Top Sack

Not only is this dry bag waterproof, but also snow proof, dust proof and sand proof.  With the unique watertight double lock, you do not have to worry about water getting into the bag. What’s more, it has a transparent see-through window panel that allows you to see what’s inside the bag without unpacking. The KastKing dry bag can float when sealed with air trapped inside and while it will not replace a personal flotation device, it will act as a supplemental emergency flotation device. Personally, this is my pick for the best dry bag.

The KastKing dry bag waterproof roll-top sack is excellent for all purposes and is suitable for quick submersion.

Pros

  • Light and more pliable for easy packing
  • Fully seam-sealed for ultimate waterproofness
  • Alternative handle and fully adjustable shoulder straps
  • Double overlap roll top

Cons

  • Some water seeps into the dry bag

Dry Bag Sack, Waterproof Floating Dry Gear Bags

Dry Bag Sack, Waterproof Floating Dry Gear Bags

Of all the dry bags on here, this is the only one that comes in a size smaller than the five-liter one. The two-liter dry bag would come in handy especially if you do not have a lot of items you need to carry about. Just like the heavy duty vinyl dry bag, this one is also suitable for quick submersion and protects your valuables from dirt, dust, water, and sand.

The dry bag sack from Unigear comes with a universal size, touch-friendly phone bag. Its shoulder sling is not only extra-long but also removable and adjustable for comfortable carry and support.

Made of tough nylon, this bag is highly resistant to abrasion and puncture.

Pros

  • The shoulder straps are padded for comfortability
  • With some air trapped in, the bag can float

Cons

  • It starts to leak after a few uses
  • The cell phone case is poorly made and not waterproof

What to look for in the Best Dry Bags

While buying a dry bag may seem like such an easy task, there are a lot of factors to consider before you decide to spend those dollars. Let’s take a look at a few of them.

Size

Dry bags come in a range of sizes to suit smaller items such as phones and money and larger items such as clothing and sleeping bags. Most bags fall into one of three basic size categories: small, medium and large. Small bags are ideal for things like your cell phone and wallet; medium bags are good for things like camping stoves, hiking boots, and larger tools while large bags are ideal for sleeping bags and clothing. However, you can use the large bag to stuff in the smaller and medium bags too for further insulation. There when one layer fails, there’s still another layer to protect your things.

Material

Dry bags come in a variety of materials. Some favor durability, while others favor light weight and flexibility. Most modern dry bags are made of one of two different materials: nylon and vinyl. Nylon usually has a water-repelling coating, such as silicon, when making dry bags. It sacrifices some durability for weight-saving benefits and flexibility, making it handy for packing in tight spaces. Vinyl provides good durability and suits gear that is heavy or has the potential to cause abrasions. It’s also easy to repair.

Intended purpose

Dry bags should suit their intended use. Whether your adventures involve whitewater, helmets and a white-knuckled grip on your paddle, dry bags are made to keep your gear organized, protected and dry. The type of activity that you’re partaking in will go a long way in your decision for a dry bag. The type of water exposure will decide how durable you want your dry bag to be while the type of gear will decide how large your dry bag will be. It’s important to remember that the majority of dry bags are not intended to withstand extended submersion. Dry bags vary from simple and pared down, to offering a range of different features to suit different needs. Some offer extra features that you might prefer.

Type of closure

Dry bags don’t all close the same way. They offer different types of closure for waterproofing. Many of the best bags actually feature more than one type of closure, for increased protection.

Zippers- While zippers provide a great way to close up a dry bag, they frequently seem to break at the worst possible time.

Drawstrings-Drawstring closures are typically used in conjunction with a roll-down or Velcro closure. They’re fairly easy to use and are quickly repairable if they break. Roll down the top to help squeeze out the air and compress your gear a bit.

Velcro-Many dry bags feature a Velcro closure to provide an additional layer of water protection. Velcro is a great material for this application, as it is strong, secure and functional in both wet and dry conditions.

Robust hardware

Check the hardware on a dry bag before purchasing it. Cheap dry bags often use poor quality zippers that come out in no time. Any zippers and clips on your dry bag should be well-built for the task.

D- rings

These are just as the name suggests, rings in the shape of a “D.”  They can either come with the purchase or be sold separately. These rings are an essential part of a dry bag and are used to string multiple bags together. They also release the stress exerted on the buckle once numerous bags are tied together.

Brand

Buying a dry bag from a reputable brand could save you a lot of time and money. Research thoroughly on the different brands in the market and ensure a brand’s reputation, as well as their image, is top-notch before investing your money in it.

How to properly use a Dry Bag on the Water

Although some dry bags are not well-made, most times, a dry bag will let in water if it is not closed correctly. Ensuring your dry bag is securely closed goes a long way to saving you some money. (Imagine spending all those bucks replacing your electronics.)

So how exactly should you handle your dry bag while on the water?

Fill your bag to ½ full or ¾ full.

This is to allow for some space at the top to roll down the bag. Yo need to roll the top a minimum of three times so filling your dry bag to the top may not allow you to do so.

Make sure to trap some air inside.

Rather than dispel all the air, make sure you leave some air inside the bag. Why? To enable the bag to float. In case you lose your dry bag in the water, the buoyancy created by the trapped air inside will make your bag float. This will make it easier to spot.

Consider folding the top rather than rolling.

Although they are called roll-top closure, I would advise you to fold the tops. Folding creates more sharp bends to block water entry as compared to rolling. Fold the top a minimum of three times and then snap the buckle shut. Here’s a short video tutorial on how to do it. (The guy in the tutorial rolls his top, but remember to fold yours.)

Check the manufacturer’s guide on what your dry bag is intended for.

Just like the ones above, dry bags can either be intended for quick submersion or longer submersion. Check this specific quality first before going out with your dry bag. Dry bags that are only intended for quick submersion may not do a good job of keeping your items dry should they be immersed in water for a longer period.

Some Useful Tips

Just like any other thing, you could do with some useful tips for handling dry bags.

Roll the top a minimum of three times.

Like I mentioned above, dry bags have different ways to close them. For those with roll top closure, consider rolling the top a minimum of three times. Sure, it reduces the available space you could have used, but it does improve on the bag’s waterproof ability.

Use a dry bag inside a dry bag.

When you are traveling with your laptop, iPad, phone- any electronic for that matter, you will certainly want to be extra careful. Put your electronics in one small dry bag which you can then insert inside another one. Some dry bags let in a little water, and by doing this, you will reduce the amount of direct impact your electronics will have should anything happen.

Ideally, you should get a bright colored dry bag.

Brightly colored dry bags are a much safer bet as compared to dull colors. This is because, in case you lose your dry bag while you are out in the jungle, it will be easier to spot it if it is of bright color, say red, as opposed to black.

Consider dry bags with a transparent window first.

I would strongly recommend getting a dry bag that has a clear window panel. When you are out camping or kayaking, you really do not want to rummage through all your stuff just to get to that one thing at the bottom. A transparent window panel will allow you to see where everything in the dry bag is and save you the trouble of unpacking them all.

Always have a dry bag- albeit a small one- around.

As you have seen above, dry bags can be useful in so many situations. Having one or two around could be a lifesaver. It doesn’t matter where you are going, and you could improvise a dry bag to just about anything, should the need arise. Ensure you keep one small one in your daily carrier bag for emergency situations.

Check to ensure your dry bag is waterproof.

You will want to be sure your dry bag is completely waterproof before getting your electronics all ruined. It is important to carry out a waterproof test at home. Simply put some tissue paper or just plain paper into the bag and close it. Immerse the bag in a tub full of water and leave it there for a few minutes. If the paper comes out wet, even if just a little, you may want to take extra caution before using that dry bag on your next snorkelling trip.

Unlike in the past, where dry bags were popular with those who love canoeing and kayaking, dry bags are quickly gaining popularity among other outdoor enthusiasts too. The great thing about them is that they are relatively affordable. There are various types of dry bags; you just have to look for one that suits your needs. Consider investing in a great dry bag, or two, for whatever reason you may have- an afternoon at the beach, camping or maybe even just for those rainy days.

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7 of the Best Pool Games

Best Pool Games

The best thing about having a pool is the variety of games you can play in it. And what better way to beat the summer heat other than taking a dip in the pool. With a few friends and just the right games, you may not even need to swim to have some fun in the pool. Pool games will help you burn those extra calories in a fun and engaging way. I love pool games, and between my high school sleepovers and my lazy adult days, I have played quite a share of them.  I am a sucker for pool parties and I have tried several of these in my own parties and I can say, they were a hit.Here are my seven best pool games.

Best Pool Games
GoPong Pool Lounge Beer Pong Inflatable with Social Floating, White

Pool Lounge Beer Pong Inflatable

Starlight Swimming games- the glow-in-the-dark outdoor game kitGlow-in-the-dark Outdoor Game KitSwimline Giant Shootball Inflatable Pool ToyGiant Shootball Inflatable Pool ToyRing Toss Inflatable Pool GameRing Toss Inflatable Pool GameIntex Inflat-A-Bull, Inflatable Pool ToyInflat-A-Bull, Inflatable Pool ToyAIRHEAD LOB THE BLOB Inflatable gameLOB THE BLOB Inflatable gameBlue Wave Aqua Golf Backyard Game

Aqua Golf Backyard Game

Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.2/5Rating: 3.8/5Rating: 4.0/5Rating: 4.2/5Rating: 4.6/5Rating: 3.4/5
Players: 2-4Players: 2-6Players: 1-2Players: 1-3Players: 1Players: 2-4Players: 1-2
Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $

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Pool Lounge Beer Pong with Social Inflating

GoPong Pool Lounge Beer Pong Inflatable with Social Floating, White

Having a pool in your backyard gives you the freedom to have as many pool parties as you wish. Pool parties are supposed to be fun-filled with lots of games and drinks. Go pong brings these two together to form the ultimate addition to your pool party. Ditch your classic way of playing beer pong and have some fun in the pool.

Go Pong’s Pool Lounge beer Pong is sidelined with cup holders and three pong balls. On either side, there is a full ten-cup beer pong set up. Although the package does not include the cups, standard sized solo cups should work just fine. For a little more stability, the beer pong table has on each corner, a grommet so you can anchor the raft, or tie it to a fixed point.

The pool lounge can be used for social floating if beer pong is just not your thing. Just grab a couple of friends, place your drinks on the eight cupholders and catch up on the latest while floating around the table. If you ever are lucky to have the pool lounge all to yourself, fill it up and enjoy a light tan while floating with instant access to all the eight cupholders. You can even use the cupholders for your phone, sun lotion and just about anything you would want.

Pros

  • It is made of sturdy vinyl that can withstand just about any party abuse. (Beer pong can get aggressive the more the players drink)
  • The pool lounge keeps the cups high enough out of the water.
  • You only have to fill one air hole, unlike similar products.
  • You can flip it and use the pool lounge as a float.

Cons

  • The table has some air leaks and may not stay inflated for a long time (more than 3 hours)

How to use it

If you love parties, then beer pong shouldn’t be something new to you. Inflate the table and set it up in the pool. With all the cups in place fill the ten cups on each side with alcohol (you can use any drink, but where’s the fun in that?) and divide the party into two groups. Have each group stand at their side and try to shoot ping pong balls into their opponents cups. Should the ball land inside the cup, the other team takes the beer in that cup, and it is removed. The first group to eliminate their opponents’ cups is declared the winner.

The Pool Lounge Beer Pong table is a great way to let the adults cool off some steam. Add this to your pool games at your next party and watch it become a hit.

Starlight Swimming games- the glow-in-the-dark outdoor game kit

Starlight Swimming games- the glow-in-the-dark outdoor game kit

Who says you can only enjoy some pool fun during the day? Pool games can be even more interesting at night and these glow in the dark starlight swimming games ensures you can still enjoy the pool at night. Summer nights can be especially too hot to stay indoors, and this is a perfect way to light up the pool and have some fun.

This outdoor game kit comes with several LED lights and is easy to set up. You only have to twist each light on, throw it in the pool and you are good to go. The button underneath allows for different light settings. The lights may be submerged to about 20 feet underwater, and if cared for properly, the batteries can last to up to 48 hours.

Features

  • Six Border Lights (three blue and three green)
  • Six Glow Bracelets (three blue and three green)
  • Four Dive Diamonds (two blue and two green)
  • Two Floating Flowers (one blue and one green)
  • One Guidebook (with instructions for ten different pool games)
  • All batteries required (which last 24-48 hours)

The glow-in-the-dark outdoor game kit allows you to play ten pool games and is a great way to get your kids off the internet and all the technology for some nighttime outdoor fun. It also comes with an easy to understand guidebook.

Pros

  • With the different games you could play, you can’t quickly get bored.
  • The lights are waterproof and very safe for your underwater fun.
  • The glow-in-the-dark outdoor kit uses standard batteries and are easy to replace
  • This game can accommodate many people making it one of the best pool games

How to Play

You can enjoy time with your family and friends playing ten different games.

  • Sharks and Minnows- a simple tag game. Have someone be the shark and everyone else be the minnows. The shark shouts, “Fishy, fishy, come out and play” and the minnows move (or swim) towards them. Whenever the shark yells “attack,” the minnows have to move away as the shark tries to tag them. Whoever is tagged also becomes a shark.
  • Treasure Hunters- a competitive and straightforward game. Just have some ‘treasure’ in the pool and have the players collect it. You can improvise the treasure with anything from coins to balls. Caution: If playing with children, ensure they know how to swim or better yet, stick to the shallow end of the pool.
  • Frogs on the Lilly Pad – this game is great for kids who can’t or don’t like to swim. Have a lily pad floating in the pool and toss the frogs onto the pads to earn points.
  • Popsicle- set apart a playing area in the pool where everyone can stand with their head above the water. Have one player be it and tries to tag the others. When a player is tagged, they have to stand with their hands raised like a popsicle until they are thawed out by another player swimming between their legs. Have the ‘it’ changed after a couple of minutes.
  • Human Whirlpool- works best with a large crowd. Have everyone in the pool at a shallow area. It is best to ensure they are all good swimmers. Get them to walk in a large circle in the same direction. Increase the pace progressively. Once enough momentum is created, everyone has to pick their feet up and float.
  • Zombies & Doctors
  • Flower Push Relay
  • Whales vs. Sharks
  • What Time is it, Dr. Shark?
  • Rush to Power

Swimline Giant Shootball Inflatable Pool Toy

Swimline Giant Shootball Inflatable Pool Toy

Basketball is a favorite sport among many and Swimline has made it possible for you to enjoy it while in the pool. You don’t even have to play professional basketball with all the rules. Just try to make some baskets, and of course, the team, or player with most baskets wins.

The Giant Shootball is inflatable and comes with multiple ports for multiple shooters. With every purchase, you also get one ball. Tip: To have some extra ones, buy a bunch of regular and small beach balls

The giant shootball is made of heavy gauge vinyl and has some great basketball action.

Pros

  • It is sturdy and can withstand fierce basketball games.
  • The shootball is well-built which makes it quite durable
  • It can be used to play in a shallow lake- You don’t have to use this in the pool only. Deflate it and bring it with your to your summer cottage in the woods.
  • Kids can even use it as a mega-float holding around 5-6 kids at a time.

Cons

  • Deflating the shootball is tedious- the air valves are small, and therefore air seeps out very slowly when the ports are unplugged.
  • The shootball is big and may not work for you if you have a small pool.

How to play it.

To enjoy this game, all you have to do is fill it up with air. You can use an air pump or an air compressor. With multiple players, have each one of you throw the ball through the hoop to make a basket. Make the game even more competitive by playing in teams. The shootball does not come with an anchor system. Just use a rope to tie it to a weight to prevent it from moving about with the breeze.

Ring Toss Inflatable Pool Game

Ring Toss Inflatable Pool Game

Having some fun in the pool doesn’t have to cost much. This pocket-friendly game from Jet Creations Inc. is a beautiful bird and game all wrapped in one. The flamingo head can be placed just about anywhere: in the pool, on a table, on the ground and even on someone’s head! It is the perfect game for some laughter

Ring Toss comes with three different sized rings with colours and numbers for you to have some competitive fun. The material, although thin, is still sturdy enough for endless hours of play.

Pros

  • It is small and easy to carry about
  • You can have some fun with it outside the pool. Just place it on a table, the ground or better yet on someone’s head and have them run around.
  • It is pocket-friendly and quite affordable

Cons

  • Rings keep deflating and if playing for hours, you will have to keep inflating the rings as they do not hold air for long.

How to play it

The flamingo head can be placed on just about any surface. The game aims to toss in the rings around the flamingo’s neck. For sheer fun, I would recommend having one player wear the flamingo head as a hat. The player then swims about in the pool as others attempt to toss the rings. Even if you are not among the players, watching your friends goof around with this game will leave you in stitches.

Intex Inflat-a-Bull, Inflatable Pool Toy

Intex Inflat-A-Bull, Inflatable Pool Toy

Bull riding is so much fun. Just mounting that bull and have it toss you up and down brings about an exciting thrill. Now imagine having as much fun while in the pool. Go ahead and get brave with this exciting game from Intex. Inflat-a-bull is a fun-filled game that is great for the pool, lake or even river. Compete with friends and family as you try to remain mounted on the bull. You will have some challenging wet fun with this.

The game is designed with photo-realistic printing technology and looks like the actual thing.

The bull is made of very sturdy material and can withstand a lot of pressure. The horns on the bull make it easy for you to hold onto it. That is if you can get on top of it. It is quite slippery making it hard to get on it, but that’s the whole point, right? While children have a relatively easy time mounting, adults may have to dive onto it from outside the pool. It is funny watching everyone slip and fall into the pool instead.

Tip: Try using a hair dryer in the absence of an air pump. It takes time but gets the work done eventually

Pros

  • It is perfect for all ages- anyone, kids and adults alike, can have fun riding the bull
  • Kids can use it as a float- just like the giant shootball, the inflat-a-bull is an excellent float for non-swimmers.

Cons

  • It has a weight limit of 340 lbs
  • The package does not include the inflation tip/ pump. Inflating the bull may, therefore, be difficult.

How to play it.

The first challenge of this game is to mount the bull. The back of the bull is quite slippery making it difficult, but that’s where the fun lies. When (and if) you successfully manage to mount it, have some friends rock the bull and hold on to the horns for support. Staying mounted is yet another challenge.You may want to time how much time each rider remains on the bull. The rider who stays longest without slipping into the pool wins. When we used this at a neighbour’s barbeque, most adults couldn’t stay mounted for long than a few seconds!

Airhead Lob The Blob Inflatable Game

AIRHEAD LOB THE BLOB Inflatable game

Airhead  Lob the Blob inflatable game gives you the chance to bring the classic cornhole game into the water. Have some fun with your friends as you test your skill and luck at sinking the Blobs in the ten-inch hole. Lob the blob comes with four green blobs, four blue blobs, and one target. Landing the blobs into the hole is not as easy as you think and that just adds into the fun and competitiveness.

Constructed of heavy gauge PVC with the Speed Safety Valve, Lob the Blob is fast and easy to inflate and deflate.

Pros

  • You can easily take it with you wherever you want
  • It comes with grommets on all four corners for easy tethering.
  • You don’t have to use it only in the pool. Tether it to the ground in your backyard and have just as much fun.

How to play it.

Fill the blobs with water and have the players take turns throwing them at the ten-inch hole in the far end. You could have them stand outside the pool or in the pool across the platform. The winner is the first one to reach or exceed 21 points. Should the blob land in the hole, the player earns 3 points while a landing on the platform earns only one point. Cheat tip: Deflate the blobs a little to make it easier for you to land them on the board.

Aqua Golf Backyard Game

Blue Wave Aqua Golf Backyard Game

While having some friends over for a pool party, it may at times be challenging to get the men into the pool. Lure them in with this classic game from Blue Wave. Who says you can’t play golf in the pool?  This game allows you to work on your swing while at the same time having some fun in the pool.  Aqua Golf Backyard game is a miniature edition of golf that comes with some floating green, 2 cups and flags and 12 hook and loop practice golf balls. A  golf club is not included, and you can use any club except the putter. Using a rip driver might be a little difficult but get a rubber tee so that it stays up. Don’t worry about retrieving the golf balls from the pool as they are made to float.

Cons

Although this game is fun, it doesn’t hold up for much longer than one use.

  • The green is just some foam and turf glued on, and after a few hours of play, water creeps into the floating green island.
  • The Velcro doesn’t stay long on the balls after getting water on them.

How to play it

The practice balls come in two different colours for competitive play. So, grab a friend and have a round of golf in your swimming pool. With the 12 hook and loop golf balls, you can chip onto the floating island green. Tee up your shot on the chipping mat and aim for one of the two flags and cups on the floating island green.

These games are a perfect way to kill the heat and have some fun especially during the idyllic summer days and nights. Ensure that all players are good swimmers especially for games that involve some swimming. If kids are not around, toss in a couple of drinks and have some fun. Grab these games and enjoy some quality wet time spent with family and friends.

My personal pick for the best pool game on this list is the Starlight Swimming Games – glow-in-the-dark outdoor game kit. Not only does it light up the pool beautifully at night, but also the variety of games you can play is a bonus. Though I would recommend all of these games, this has to be my number one pick! If you are the market for a new pool here is a great article to cover all of your questions.

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Best Pull Behind Tubes for Boats

Best Pull Behind Tubes for Boats

Super Mable Towable

Super Mable Towable

AIRHEAD Hot Dog Towable

AIRHEAD Hot Dog Towable

AIRHEAD AHM2-2 Mach 2 Towable

AIRHEAD AHM2-2 Mach 2 Towable

Big Mable Towable

Big Mable Towable

AIRHEAD Watersports AIRHEAD G-Force

AIRHEAD Watersports AIRHEAD G-Force

Rating: 4.4/5Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.0/5Rating: 4.4/5Rating: 3.8/5
Max People: 3Max People: 4Max People: 2Max People: 2Max People: 3
Tow Points: 2Tow Points: 1Tow Points: 2Tow Points: 2Tow Points: 1
Heavy Duty Nylon CoverHeavy Duty Nylon CoverHeavy Duty Nylon CoverHeavy Duty Nylon CoverHeavy Duty Nylon Cover
Dimensions: 75″ x 73″Dimensions: 103″ x 44″Dimensions: 69″ x 69″Dimensions: 69″ x 66″Dimensions: 78″ x 75″
Cost: $$$Cost: $Cost: $Cost: $$Cost: $$

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Best Pull Behind Tubes for Boats: Kids have their own activities for every season, one of their favorites is playing around in the cool water on a sunny day; actually, everyone enjoys that. A good idea, while playing in the water, is to use something safe and fun at the same time, a perfect example of that is the inflatable Towable. It’s something that kids and adults alike can enjoy. They are a must have for a fun sunny day in the water with your family. They are usually used as a tool for boating or just sitting in the water. Towable water tubes have various different designs and versions and to pick one you have to make sure you get the best quality to ensure safety and a design that caters to your needs. Just make sure you don’t go too crazy with them, even the safest inflatable can become dangerous. Following are the top 5 Towable water tubes on Amazon that can provide a very fun experience.

Super Mable Towable

Super Mable Towable

This towable has an interesting orange color and it can seat up to 3 people. It is more expensive than most of the other towable water tubes but it makes up for it with its features. This design comes in two sizes, the super mable and the great big mable.

Specifications

  • Safety valve for accelerated inflation and deflation
  • Full nylon cover with zipper
  • EVA foam pads
  • Multiple grab handles
  • Knuckle guards
  • Size: 75″x 73″
  • Weight: 20 pounds
  • Two tow points
  • Kwik connect: heavy duty rope for tethering it safely

Full nylon cover

This full cover is heavy duty and increases durability. The towable will be used for rough tumble and it needs a durable material that will not be damaged easily.

Two tow points

These allow 2 riding positions and two people can control it at the same time and one person bad two option to choose from while riding it.

Multiple grab handles

Grab handles and knuckle guards make the towable safer and more stable to ride in as you have something to easily grab onto.

EVA foam pads

These are extremely comfortable and prevent injury to your knees or hands.

Pros

This towable has a heavy duty durable material that prevents against damage. Its inflation is easy and quick saving time and giving you more time for fun. It has a reasonable weight so it is easy to pick up and move around. It’s safe as it provides grab handles that keep you from slipping off.  it also has excellent dimensions and can easily seat 3 people. It also has self-draining vents that make sure it does not collect water.

Cons

It is a little more expensive than the other towable water tubes. Sometimes water may collect in the bottom so you have to be very careful and not leave it in the water for too long, although it usually only happens after it being in the water for weeks and a few days do not really make a difference.  It can be difficult to handle because of its huge size.

Customer reviews

This product has a 4.5-star rating on Amazon and 75% of the people that rated it gave it 5 stars. Customers claim that it is excellent for adults as well, stating that it is good for a calming time on the water to just sit, relax and read a book on. According to most customers, it also does not tip over, meaning that it is very stable and safe for kids. It is also very easy to tackle and most people stated that they did not even need the instructions to use it. It can also be used by just one person or two as it is very stable and the weight is easily distributed.

AIRHEAD Hot Dog Towable

AIRHEAD Hot Dog Towable

This towable has a very fun and interesting shape i.e. the shape of a hot dog. Even just its shape can be extremely fun for kids. It can seat up to 3 people and its long thin shape means that kids can ride it through the water. It is also available in 4 different sizes, double dog, HD-3 dog, Quad dog 4 and Jumbo dog.

Specifications

  • 840-denier nylon cover that is double stitched
  • 3 air chambers that are 30-gauge vinyl
  • Neoprene knuckle guards and seat pads
  • Nylon wrapped deluxe handles
  • Size: 103″ x 44″ (deflated)
  • RF welded seams
  • EVA foam pads

EVA foam pads

These foam pads are strategically placed to protect the knees and elbows. The knees rest on the sides of the towable and they are protected against injury.

RF welded seams

They are tough are will not easily pull apart from the pressure of the water.

Nylon wrapped handles

These handles are covered in nylon which makes them very soft and easy to hold, which prevents your hands from being injured from holding them too tightly which is necessary sometimes when boating through water.

Double stitched cover

This makes the cover extra tough and prevents damage to it.

Pros

It has soft foam pads extra tough covering which makes it extremely durable and means it will not get damaged easily. It has a very reasonable price range. It is very stable even with the longitudinal shape so it can be used by one person at a time, because of its commendable balance.

Cons

The unique dimensions prevent the people sitting on it from sitting side by side, they will have to sit in a straight line which is bothersome for some people. It does not have any ropes with it and you’ll have to buy them separately.

Customer reviews

Customers mostly express satisfaction and this towable has a rating of 4.3 stats on Amazon and 70% of the people that rated it gave 5 stars. Customers praise it’s durability and claim that it can easily carry a huge amount of weight and the dimensions are excellent as it can easily fit 3 people on it, even 3 adults. It is extremely stable and accommodates for uneven weight distribution so both adults and kids can sit on it at the same time as well. According to some users it can be cumbersome for tall people but otherwise all those who used it recommend it and exclaim that it is a lot of fun for both children and adults.

AIRHEAD AHM2-2 Mach 2 Towable

AIRHEAD AHM2-2 Mach 2 Towable

This towable is bright attractive blue color with some shades of purple, it has an aesthetically pleasing style and has a round shape. It can seat two people at a time and it has seperate compartments so the people sitting on it will be comfortable and not bumping into each other constantly. It has na average, reasonable price range and at the same time is a good quality towable.

Specifications

  • Full nylon cover that is heavy duty
  • Heavy gauge PVC bladder and RF welded seams
  • EVA foam pads
  • Dimensions: 21” × 15” × 7”
  • Weight: 16 pounds

Heavy duty nylon cover

This cover, as it is made of nylon, is extremely soft and comfortable and at the same time it is extremely durable so it will not be easily damaged if it numbs against something in the water.

EVA foam pads

These foam pads make sure that you can lean your knees and hands against them without any danger of injury they provide support and are extremely comfortable.

RF welded seams

These are extremely tough and ensure that the material does not pull apart under pressure.

Pros

This towable has a very light weight and can be easily carried around, its size is manageable and does not take up too much space. It is affordable as it has a very reasonable price. The material is very durable and perfect for kids. It is very stable and can be used by only one person as well.

Cons

It is not suitable for adults, especially tall people as the area to sit is closed off and small and tall people will not be able to fit in. Also, a large child will not be able to fit as it is very small.

Customer reviews

This product has 4 stars on Amazon with most of its customers expressing satisfaction. It is excellent for young kids and they have a lot of fun boating on it. Some customers complain that it leaks air when adults sit on it but most of them have not expressed this complaint and it is advisable to only limit its use to kids as it is not made for adults. According to most customers it is na excellent product to ensure that your kids have fun.

Big Mable Towable

Big Mable Towable

This towable is a previous version of the SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 Super Mable Towable. It is much cheaper version with fewer features but regardless, it is a commendable design and deserves it’s spot on this list. It is of a similar orange color and design. It also has 4 different sizes and it only seats 2 people.

Specifications

  • Safety speed valve
  • Two tow points
  • Knuckle guards
  • Nylon heavy duty cover
  • EVA foam pads
  • Dimensions: 69″ x 66″

Improved backrest and cushioned walls

This is a feature introduced in this towable that was not available in the previously made towables. This means that the walls are cushioned by air and extremely comfortable.

Knuckle guards and EVA foam pads

Both of these features work to make the towable more comfortable and protect the riders from injury. They act as support for your knees and hands and prevent any injury that might occur from the unavoidable pressure that is exerted when boating in a towable.

Pros

It is smaller in size and easily manageable, it is also cheaper than the new model. It is also ectremely stable and can seat one person at a time as well as two. It has a low weight, 10 pounds. It can be used by adults as well as kids.

Cons

It gets heavy after being in water as the water leaks into the towable and has to be taken out. The material gets damaged easily especially when left in the sun for too long. However it can be easily stored within a cool shaded indoors place and will remain mostly impervious t wear and tear.

Customer reviews

This towable had mostly positive reviews and a 4.4 star rating. Kids enjoy it immensely and so do adults. It can easily fit a tall person as well and the customers who bought it claimed that it was a good bonding time for their family. The only complaint is that the water gets into the towable and makes it heavy when taking it out, however, that water can be taken out easily and is not too much of a hindrance.

AIRHEAD Watersports AIRHEAD G-Force

AIRHEAD Watersports AIRHEAD G-Force

This towable is a bright appealing red color with the AIRHEAD logo. It can easily carry three people at a time and it has a very reasonable price which makes it very affordable. It has a flat shape and no compartments or seats so everyone can sit together and it provides a certain kind of thrill and exhilaration as there is no back support and only handles that you can hold on to while boating. It has been tested for durability and it can be used by both adults and kids.

Specifications

  • 6 knuckle guards that are neoprene
  • Speed safety valve
  • Boston valve
  • Dimensions: 78″ x 75″
  • Kwik connect
  • Heavy gauge PVC bladder with RF welded seams
  • Weight: 22 pounds

Speed safety and Boston valve

These valves are added to make inflation and deflation fast, it saves up time and leaves more time for fun. They also make inflation and deflation safe.

Kwik connect

This is a strong tube rope that is available to tie the towable securely when not boating. This specific rope has a 1 inch diameter hole and it can handle up to 6000 lbs. pressure or weight.

Neoprene knuckle guards

Neoprene makes the knuckle guards elastic and stretchable while at the same time secure and durable. They are good for safety and provide something study to hold on to as you’re bumping around on the waves.

Pros

It comes with a kwik connect which means that you won’t have to go through the hassle of finding and buying a sturdy rope. It is easy, safe and time saving to inflate and deflate because of its speed valve. It can carry adults as well as kids which makes it a fun product that the whole family can enjoy. It has high quality construction and is extremely durable (which has even been tested). It can provide a thrilling and exhilarating experience as it has no supports and is perfect for young people to battle the waves on. It also has a very reasonable price.

Cons

If you are looking for a smooth and comfortable experience then this is not the towable for you. It has no support and it is very easy to fall off it, you need to tightly hold on at all times and making casual conversations with their partner would not be a suitable option for someone boating on this towable. It is not very stable and it is very easy for water to come to the surface as it is a flat towable, like a raft.

Customer reviews

This towable has a 3.8 star rating on Amazon. Most of the customers seemed pleased with it and the common complaint is that it is very easy to slip off of. Otherwise, customers state that it is great for treading water as it skips across it easily and that is made of a very sturdy material and is resistant to harm. It lasts for a long time and some of the customers were so pleased that they even bought another one when their fist one got damaged. Even the ones whose towable water tubes got damaged say that this product was well worth the cost. However, some do say that it is not suitable for kids as it is very easy to fall off it but for adults it is an excellent pastime.

Conclusion

This entire review shows that the SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 Super Mable Towable is the best option. Although it is more expensive than the other towables, it makes up for its cost with its commendable features. It is excellent for both adults and kids and, unlike the number 5 and the number 2 towable, it has great back support and you can use it for both relaxing and treading rough water. It also has multiple handles to grab onto for support that also prevent any injury. Unlike most of the other water tubes, it also has a speed safety valve which ensures that you efficiently and safely inflate and deflate the towable without facing any problems. It also has a very reasonable and manageable weight whereas the others either weigh too much or are too small. It even provides supports on the sides without completely restricting the space, something that none of the other towables can claim. Its huge comfortable size also makes it a good option to use it to lounge around in the water and relax which is not entirely possible in the other towables. Even the customers have given it the highest rating and it can easily be concluded that it is definitely the best towable tube. Here are some great inflatable tubes for relaxing on the water.