Being seen when out in low light or at night is easier to achieve than ever before for kayakers. With the range of nav-night lights design specifically for our needs and budgets there is no excuses to be putting ourselves and others at risk by not being visible.
Let me go through the products I am using and recommend for night fishing. I am a fan of the RAILBLAZA system which caters for our needs perfectly giving a range of lighting options that have their own power source, can be re-positioned to suit the occasion by moving to another StarPort mount and are brighter than many lights I see on small boats.
This is the latest addition to the Railblaza lighting range. The Visibility kit consists of the Telepole (extends from 550mm to 1050mm), Florescent orange flag which clips to the Telepole & NEW RAILBLAZA NaviLux 360 light which plugs into the TelePole. The Navilux light is powered by 3 x AA batteries and is very bright! The light can be plugged in anywhere you have a StarPort & can work well as a cockpit light. I mount this kit close to me either in a StarPort within reach so I can turn the light on or off, usually it is mounted to my chill pod when using the Viking kayaks or behind the cockpit when in my Barracuda sea kayak.
I also like to run this light ither mounted to the Tackle pod or further up the bow as it has many functions one of which that allows good directional lighting which means I can be seen without it effecting my night vision. Navisafe LED lights are the only battery powered lights available which are US Coast Guard approved to 2 nautical miles! Powered by 3 x AAA batteries, they will run for up to 85 hours in flashing mode, and have many other modes available
Navisafe 360 and the Navilux light are also bright enough that when mounted to the telepole they throw enough light over your cockpit to allow you to see without turning on a bright head torch.. they also seem to create more bait fish around the kayak so I can image for those that fish for squid this would be a great assistant.
This one I have only just started using and is more for an extra piece of mind than anything else. It is not law here in NZ that kayaks display a Port/StarBoard light bit if you have an option like this my question for those that frequent busy waterways is why would you not use one? The red and green light function also make for low light cockpit lights if you needed them.
Head torch and hand torch
On most I do carry a hand held torch & head torch also, this is stowed in my tackle pod or cockpit and used for a brighter directional light when needed to spot shallow water, land or to point at oncoming boats that may not have seen my other lights…which can happen when the lights of the streets are behind you, your lights are lost on this backdrop so movement will get the attention of a skipper on the lookout. Head torch is a good option for hands free directional lighting we working around the cockpit rigging tackle etc…for these you obviously want to spend a little more money on good quality waterproof options as they will not last in the salt water. I am using the Dorcy brand.
Click on the images below to see more at the RAILBLAZA website