Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Paddling gear and boat review
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Robbie
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Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Robbie » Mon Oct 06, 2014 1:49 pm

I'm a newbie and need your input for WW kayaking clothing. As far as I can tell, there are LOTS of different options/combinations. The full dry suit seems the best for the coldest water and weather, but also the most expensive. (Everything I get is times 3 for me and my sons.)

So, what do you all use in the cold, that seems to be most affordable? Is it worth it to just go for the dry suit if possible, as a three season solution by adjusting the layering? How about a dry top and dry pants instead? Or dry top and dry bib? Or, a dry top and farmer johns? Or, ????

Also, has anyone heard anything about these Chinese made dry suits? Price seems reasonable, if the quality is decent. But without seeing it, who can tell about the quality?

http://www.dhgate.com/store/category/dr ... 95138.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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TrentF
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by TrentF » Mon Oct 06, 2014 5:06 pm

I had this same question when i started paddling. This is my opinion:

Good: Farmer John wetsuit and dry top.
Better: Dry Top and Dry Pant Combo
Best: Dry suit

I started with the wetsuit and dry top combo. It worked but still got a little chilly (Not bad but would have rather had full dry gear if something were to go wrong) just last year invested in a dry suit and it is AWESOME! FYI when you buy dry gear Kokatat is the only way to go.
Trent Fears

Robbie
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Robbie » Mon Oct 06, 2014 9:48 pm

Thanks Trent. Your order of items is about what I was thinking too. The dry top with dry pants looks to be most affordable for me at this moment.

So, I was wondering about the order of layers around the waist with your pants, top and skirt?

Also, why is Kokotat best. What about any of the many others?

RobM
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by RobM » Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:46 pm

Hey Robbie, this really depends on what your doing. If kayaking the dry suit is the best ! The two piece dry pants & dry top I used for years & it was not dry. So if u go with the two piece dry wear I would plan on just getting by in my opinion. The farmer johns 3m, hydro skin top ( the colder the thicker) with a dry top is the best for me while working in the water. Mostly because it keeps me warm & I can swim very effectively. Better than dry suit in the water. Yet the dry suit for kayaking is the way to go. Kokatat is a very good product. I won't say the best yet it is what I have. Kokatats warranty is awesome. I sent mine back a year after I bought it & they fixed it quickly plus it didn't cost me. If so they fix them very cheap. I haven't heard of any other company that has better customer relations. That is why kokatat is better mostly. I would make sure to order one size bigger for more fleece or wool underneath it. Also get goretex. Very comfy & breathable. Yet to me the second best or the cheaper way to stay warm & comfy would be the farmer johns , hydro skin top & dry top. The padded knees come in very well if you ever find yourself in the water with better swimming ability. Hope to see u at the ford Thursday.
See ya on the water,
Rob

Robbie
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Robbie » Wed Oct 08, 2014 9:26 am

Thanks Rob. I ended up getting a dry top and dry pants for all of us. We'll just have to get by until we can pick up better gear over time. I see farmer johns come up for sale used more than dry suits, so will probably add those to our collection as available.
At least we won't be completely left in the cold as winter starts.
See you Thursday!

RobM
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by RobM » Wed Oct 08, 2014 2:00 pm

Dry pants & dry top will be good. Like I said, I used that for years. Make sure to wear wool or fleece underneath them. No COTTEN. You all will be fine. Yes some farmer johns would open up kayaking in colder weather. But really if you can save up for a goretex dry suit it makes 32degrees feel comfy. Glad to hear y'all are cold weather ready.
To learn more of the does & don'ts join up for the SWR class this November . It will be a very important class for u, since you will be having kids with you on the river. Nothing worse than going out for a great day of boating then one of the kids get in trouble & not having a fast reaction how to help them or fix the problem before things build up to a drastic situation . It has happened to me before I started taking SWR training & with leading kids down the river its necessary . It don't have to be cold either.
See ya on the water,
Rob

Robbie
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Robbie » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:07 am

Do you have any inexpensive recommendations on inexpensive under Layers? That is where to get. I know no Cotten. What's cheap but effective ( for time being)? Synthetic long underwear? Regular Fleece top?

Been thinking seriously of the SWR, and was debating whether to have the boys join me. Honestly though, I don't think they will enjoy 2 days in the water and cold enough to be worth it. Learning will go way down!

ShayA
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by ShayA » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:42 pm

Robbie wrote:Do you have any inexpensive recommendations on inexpensive under Layers? That is where to get. I know no Cotten. What's cheap but effective ( for time being)? Synthetic long underwear? Regular Fleece top?

Been thinking seriously of the SWR, and was debating whether to have the boys join me. Honestly though, I don't think they will enjoy 2 days in the water and cold enough to be worth it. Learning will go way down!
Layers, layers, layers. The colder it is the more you need. The best material I have found are wool blends. I have some Ice Breaker lightweight base layers and they are more warm than a fleece in most situations. Wool insulates better than synthetics when wet but also the most expensive. Other than that just buy some inexpensive synthetics from Walmart or Academy. You will lose them or they will end up stinking like crazy and just easier to replace. Get a couple pieces in different weights. If you are paddling 2 days in a row you will want dry stuff to put on the next morning!!!

I second Rob and Trent's thought on the dry suit. I know it's tough when first starting out buying stuff but for all the money I spent the first year or two buying cheaper stuff I could have had a dry suit. I finally invested in a new Kokatat but you might want to check out Boater Talk and eBay for used dry suits. you might find a good deal!
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Shay Allen

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hilbili
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by hilbili » Fri Oct 10, 2014 2:51 pm

I have a new pair of nrs blackrock drypants. (on sale now from nrs site $120). I wore them 3 times, and they were just a tiny bit small for me @ 6-1 270lb. same story on my stohlquist drytop I paid $250 for. their both xl, and I would ship them for $320.
tell'em Goober says "hey"!

Robbie
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Robbie » Fri Oct 10, 2014 5:51 pm

Thanks for the offer hilbili. I already ordered a black rock for one son, and the freefall for me and my other son. Found a brand new kokotat dry top for $40 on Craigslist! I found two other dry tops which should work for a while.

Charles1967
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Re: Cold Weather Kayaking Gear - Sound off!

Post by Charles1967 » Fri Oct 10, 2014 8:06 pm

FYI: I think I heard there is a "cold weather gear" presentation happening at our next ACC meeting. :thumbup:
Siloam Springs resident a few miles from the Ford. ccoletexas@gmail.com - Charles

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