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Baby's First Canoe Trips
Reviewing the Salus Bijoux Infant PFD

©Outdoor Adventure Canada

When my husband Bryan and I found out we were pregnant with our little girl we started thinking about water safety for our baby.

We had read some reviews about the and talked to a few people, but were still not sure if this would be the right pfd for our daughter Kaia. Her life is certainly worth more to us than the $89 price tag but we wanted to be sure this was the right one for her. Also, Kaia was to be our last child so this would only be used for a short time. We borrowed a Salus Bijoux from friends. They had a boy so the one we used was blue but it also comes in other colours, including a very girly pink.

Once we were home we put Kaia in the Bijoux. It was a little tricky to get on because she decided she wanted to play with the buckles but once she was distracted all was good. At first she hated it but when she found that she could easily sit up in it without it pushing onto her chin like less inexpensive models we had tried, she settled down. Unlike the very inexpensive infant life jackets which are built similar to a life jacket for an older child with the floatation around the entire torso and behind the head, the Bijoux only has floatation behind the head and in the front covering the baby's chest and belly. The back of the Bijoux sports a breathable mesh harness which houses the adjustment straps and keeps the life jacket securely in place. Because the floatation is behind the head and around the belly ensures if the baby falls into the water she or he will be cradled face up in the water with no risk of her little face being submerged. It's also much cooler in the hot weather so baby doesn't overheat.

We tested the pfd in the pool before taking her out in the canoe. We didn't even have time to bat an eyelash and the Salus Bijoux had flipped her over onto her back. Kaia was not impressed with getting her hair wet but we tried it once more. Same results but this time with smiles. Perfect. The next step was to try it in a controlled capsize at a local river where we had the same results.

The Bijoux does not restrict Kaia's movement. She can crawl and walk while wearing it; she can sit and play comfortably. The only downfall I found is that it is rated for babies weighing 9 to 25 pounds which means you will likely only get one season out of it unless you have a peanut of a little girl like we do. Our only issue was waiting for our little one to be big enough to fit in the lower end of the weight range.

Even if you could only get one season out of this product, it is still completely worth purchasing for the peace of mind alone. You can't really put a price on safety. It is a great buy and has enabled us to take our little one on several wilderness canoe trips.

Written by Laurie March
Photo of Kaia sporting a snazzy pfd, by Laurie March

   
 
           
masthead photo courtesy photos.com
 

 

 

 

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