When you’re out on the water, there’s every chance that the first craft that can help you in an emergency is already nearby.
VHF radios effectively communicate boat to boat, and if range with emergency services like sea rescue organisations. They are essential equipment, and in most states are legally required for paddle craft and boats travelling further than five nautical miles from shore.
The marine environment is brutal on electronics, yet Icom seem to handle it better than most. They are IPX7 rated and have the commercial grade build quality that this brand is renowned for. We drenched the predecessor to this model for two weeks across the Bass Strait and it didn’t miss a beat.
The Icom IC-M25 EURO VHF marine radio is slim and light. The large screen is easy to see, and the buttons are easy to operate with wet and cold hands. The speaker has AquaQuake, which essentially vibrates off, excess water so audio quality is maintained.
The Icom IC-M25EURO has Micro B USB charging. For expedition sea kayakers this is makes charging from power banks and solar panels a breeze. It also alleviates the need for bulky chargers. It’s surprising how much high quality, slim and light outdoor orientated electronics is still let down by bulky chargers that aren’t compatible with modern charging options.
On our sea kayaking trips we clip our VHF radios on the shoulder of our PFDs. It makes one handed radio operation easy, and leaves one hand free to hang on to the paddle.
Nothing beats getting out on the water, and with a little knowledge and the right safety gear things should still be ok, even if everything doesn’t go according to plan.