Mustang Inflatable Lifejacket (approved in Canada): $450
The new Mustang H.I.T. Inflatable Lifejacket is not your grandpa’s keyhole life vest: It’s the first inflatable PFD approved by Transport Canada. The H.I.T. (Hydrostatic Inflator Technology) has a pressurized, replaceable air cylinder that only inflates the vest when submerged in four or more inches of water, and won’t inadvertently activate due to rain, spray, or humidity. The jacket is maintenance-free for 5 years or until inflated, and features a neoprene Comfort Collar, strobe-light holder, and reflective strips.
ACR ResQLink Personal Locator Beacon: $275
This compact personal locator beacon (PLB) from ACR Electronics is the size of a cell phone and operates on the same emergency satellite locator system used by commercial mariners, so that when you’re really in trouble rescuers can find you, anywhere in the world. Ideally you'll never need to use this, but if you break down or become injured in a remote spot, or capsize beyond safe swimming distance of shore, it could save your life. You can also take it camping, paddling, hiking, and in the car.
Grundens Rumrunner Backpack: $73
Makers of the orange bib overalls and jackets worn by ocean fishermen the world over, Grundens is synonymous with rugged, waterproof gear. So whether you’re spending the day in the boat towing waterskiers or heading to the cottage by boat in a downpour, the company’s new Rumrunner Backpack will keep your camera, electronics, clothes, towels, books, and weekend paraphernalia safe. Made of PVC tarpaulin fabric with specially welded seams, the 30-litre pack features a roll-top closure and a moisture-wicking back panel, plus a front mesh pocket, two water bottle pockets, and neoprene shoulder strap pockets. If you need more space, Grundens also makes a waterproof duffel.
Plano Guide Series Waterproof Cases: $35-$50
The Guide Series clear-plastic cases from Plano Molding come in four sizes and feature a rubber gasket and cam-action latches to seal out moisture. They’re ideal for protecting cameras, cell phones, keys, wallets, and anything else you don’t want ruined by an accidental soaker (such as your lunch), and even feature a soft-rubber lining to absorb the impact of pounding through choppy water or accidental drops. The largest models feature a carrying handle, while the smaller boxes come with lanyards. And, attention anglers! Plano also makes a new line of waterproof locking tackle boxes designed specifically for fishing.
Fair Lead Dog Leash: $60
Does your dog love the boat as much as you do? Handmade of marine-grade materials, The Fair Lead's nautical-inspired leash features a comfortable soft-leather handle, a marine-grade bronze swivel clip and a 5' lead made of 1/2-inch, 3/8-inch, and 5/8-inch classic 3-strand spun Dacron polyester or nylon line with a breaking strength of 3,800 pounds (okay, that’s probably overkill, even when Rex is chasing a ball…). Standard colors include white, brown or black, and the leash can also be custom-ordered in different lengths and line diameters. Stainless-steel clips, custom leather colors and splitters for multiple dogs are also available. And in a pinch, the leash can also be used as a dock line! Use this at the cottage or back at home to keep those tongue-out boat adventures alive.
Magma Cabo Boat/Camp Grill: $180
We all love to barbecue at the cottage, but how about on the boat? Here’s a grill we like because it can be used either onboard or on shore for remote picnics. The stainless steel Magma Cabo grill features foldaway legs and a cooking surface large enough (23 cm x 46 cm) to handle family-size meals. The balanced, lockable lid won’t slam shut and has a draw-tight latch that secures all inner components for transport. Different mounting accessories allow the grill to be clamped to a boat rail or placed in a rod holder.
Minn Kota i-Pilot Wireless GPS Trolling System (for electric trolling motors): $450
Here’s a fishing product that’s just plain cool. The Minn Kota Motors i-Pilot Wireless Trolling System, uses GPS to steer your boat back to a specific location, follow a course stored in memory, or hold the boat in position automatically. It also lets you dial in trolling speed in 1/10 mph increments, and will even maintain a straight course by accounting for wind, waves, and current. All functions and commands can be activated via the handheld remote from anywhere on the boat. The downside is it only works with the company’s Terrova, PowerDrive V2 trolling motors.
Seadog Waterproof Playing Cards: $13
Go Fish, anyone? How about Soggy Solitaire or Old Maid in the Rain? With a deck of Seadog waterproof playing cards, cottage pokerhounds can amuse themselves anywhere, anytime—even in a downpour.
Streamlight Waypoint Spotlight: $75
There’s a mind-boggling array of spotlights to choose from, but the Streamlight WayPoint LED light stands apart, for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it’s very powerful (up to 678 meters and 210 lumens), uses less juice than traditional incandescent lights, and its rugged, water-resistant design makes it ideal for use on a boat or anywhere outdoors. Powered by 4 C-size batteries or DC power, it features 3 settings: high (210 lumens), low (20 lumens) and emergency strobe. It even comes with an integral stand for hands-free operation.