We know the importance of skegs and how much they assist in maintaining a heading in a crosswind. But this is sea kayaking and anything remotely mechanical will break, its just a matter of time. And skegs are renowned for jamming when launching off a shingle beach, the shingle simply jams in the skeg box and that's that - jammed!
So here are two simple solutions from your friendly sea kayakers at NOMAD Sea Kayaking; firstly drill a small hole at the very bottom end of your skeg and attach a short but sturdy lanyard, long enough to take hold of with your fingers. This will allow your paddle buddy to simply lean over and retract your skeg manually.
Secondly, launch backward! That's right, backward! Launching backward minimises the chance of a serious skeg jam. Usually, a firm pull on your slider and the skeg will deploy. If not revert to step 1!
Time to service your kayak, check out our guidelines here for Servicing your kayak.
As with all good things in sea kayaking, keep it simple stupid.