The Best Water Accessories of 2018
Tried and true gear for river, lake, and ocean play.
Buff UV Multifunctional Headwear ($25)
Get wet and wild without worrying about sun-damaged skin. Buff’s simple tube-shaped designs are popular for a few good reasons: they’re versatile, they’re unobtrusive, and they shield your head and neck from getting burned. Plus, the graphics are flashy and totally on-theme.
H20 Audio Surge+ Bluetooth Waterproof Headphones ($100)
Water and electronics don’t mix—most of the time. H20’s Surge+ Bluetooth headphones are an exception. Select the ear-tip size for a snug fit, then play hooky and use the built-in waterproof microphone to field business calls while fly-casting or shredding waves. Just remember to bring a sealed case for your phone, too.
SealLine Baja 20L Drybag ($29)
Getting a jacket or sleeping bag damp can turn a fun trip miserable fast. SealLine’s Baja series is solidly built, with rugged vinyl-coated polyester, fully welded seams, and a roll-top closure that will keep all your stuff high and dry.
Dakine Boonie Hat ($32)
Rugged, functional hats don’t need a lot of explanation. Dakine’s quick-drying polyester Boonie is equipped with just the necessities—a full brim and a snug, bucket-style fit. There is one luxury: an easy-pull chin strap to hold it in place. The floral print adds a dash of tropical fun.
NRS Zephyr Inflatable PFD ($100)
Resting on the waist rather than the shoulders, inflatable belt flotation devices are comfortable for exploring calm waters when there’s little chance you’ll end up in the drink. The straps on NRS’s PFD adjust easily, and the weight’s just over a pound. May you never have to use it.
PackTowl Original XL Towel ($24)
Free yourself from the bulky excess of a traditional beach towel. PackTowl’s natural viscose microfiber products are super-absorbent and incredibly light. This one’s big enough to cover your entire body but weighs a mere 4.4 ounces. It can get heavy: the fabric sops up ten times its weight in water. It also dries 40 percent faster than a plain-Jane cotton towel.