This weekend, my father and I tried out kayaking for the first time at Raleigh's Lake Johnson. For only $4 per person, we were able to rent a kayak, a life vest and the paddle (all you need). Having never taken part in this activity before, we were woefully unprepared, but have since learned several valuable lessons. The kayaks we rented were the "sit-on-top" variety, and took quite a bit of getting used to. I've never sat in that sort of position for very long, and my legs certainly felt it once we were done.
What lessons did we learn? Actually, quite a few. Interestingly enough, the kayaks have holes in the bottom of them, so you end up getting fairly wet. Our jean-shorts were ill-prepared for such an endeavor, so we'll remember to wear bathing suits next time. Likewise, sandals or flip-flops are a must (we left our sneakers and socks in the car and went barefoot). Sunscreen is also a must, and a sleeveless shirt would certainly help with temperature control. And I need some sort of kayaking gloves, as the blisters on my hands indicate.
Other than these minor problems, the trip was a blast. We are definitely going to try it again, and I may even spring for a kayak of my own if we continue to have as much fun as we did this weekend. If you've never given it a try, I heartily recommend it. Now if only we could give some whitewater kayaking a try...