First and foremost - PFDs, personal flotation devices. As discussed in a previous post here, I wear my lifejacket when I'm in the canoe 99.99% of the time. And I encourage LT to do so as well.
|Ready to go
I've added a tick remover. It's not very big and we've been lucky so far, so I'll tuck that into my pack. I also picked up a waterproof match box. We both carry a couple of lighters and I have a great flexible long-nose lighter that is refillable. It's another just-in-case item.
|Match box and tick remover
We have bear spray, which is a large can of pepper spray. The range is about 9 meters, so that bear has to be pretty close if you decide to use it. And the wind better be blowing in his direction not yours! I'm probably more likely to just toss the canister at the bear.
This is a picture from the MEC website, check it out here.
We both carry Aquatabs, which are used to make lake water potable. We've never used them as we have two forms of water purification in our kit, a filtering system and an ultraviolet light Steripen. I have the Aquatabs handy in a side pocket, easy access.
In the same pocket I have an emergency fire starting kit with several fire starters and a lighter in a Ziploc plastic bag.
I've added an emergency blanket, I got it at the dollar store, so it wasn't a big investment. It's really only a silver plastic sheet that when placed against your body is supposed to reflect the heat you generate back to you. Cheap, small and light.
|Pen for perspective
And this may not seem like much of a safety item, but having a second set of car keys with us adds to a sense of security in case the first set is lost.
We both carry the same map with us. We use Jeff's maps, which are plastic and will float. One of us just might set the map down on a portage end and forget to bring it with us. We double up on some items, like our stoves. This is in case one of the stoves fails during the trip.
We carry an extra paddle. This is one that sometimes comes along with us. Or we bring a regular paddle. We've collected a few, we have 5 total including this one:
Do you have any extra safety precautions you take that you would recommend?