Shawna Franklin from Body Boat Blade related a story during a rescue class: In a storm on the south coast of Iceland, her husband came out of his boat when he got hit by a large wave and couldn't get back in because of bags in the cockpit that had shifted. They ended up having to do a towed rescue in big surf conditions before they could rearrange his cockpit. After that they went back to the rule of nothing in the cockpit unsecured.
If you put something in make sure it's secure. Not just wedged in or tied with a piece of cord that could entrap you. And of course, practice your preferred rescue method to see if it causes problems. The only place I would put something would be behind the seat and lashed down.
YakCatcher Rod Holder
The Kayak Wing
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