Best Dry wear to start out with

So I am pretty new to the kayak game, but i wanted to get some paddle wear to make things more comfortable.

Original idea was to get a semi-dry top like the NRS motion and pair it with either a hydoskin pant or farmer john

but am toying with the idea of a full dry top with a dry pant(two piece) rather than a suit

looking for opinions


I paddle on Lake Superior (mostly the Apostles, so not open water), and my preference is for a semi-dry top, plus farmer johns, plus hydroskin shorts and hydroskin short sleeve top. I don’t wear all these at once, of course!

In shoulder seasons, I use the farmer johns plus semi-dry top, with hydroskin tshirt underneath if need be (or else just polypro underneath). ( I had tried a dry top, but my claustrophobia made it difficult.)

Most of the summer, I use the hydroskin shorts and polypro tshirt, plus a lighter paddling jacket when needed. Or the hydroskin shorts plus hydroskin shirt when I’ll be in the water for a long time, teaching rescues. I make sure I roll a few times on each outing, and that keeps me from cheating and dressing only for the air temps, since I know I’ll be under water part of the time.

Around here, people mostly use drysuits for early spring and late fall paddling on Lake SUperior, since even with frequent rolls, they’d be far too hot in the summer for above the water. Drysuits are great, but they’re not as flexible for lots of conditions.

It depends on where and when you paddle.
Your profile says “NorCal”, but is that Sacramento area in the rivers, San Francisco in the Bay, or Humboldt County in Big Lagoon? What you wear would depend on how cold the water is and how long you’re likely to spend in it.

At 50 degree water
Increasingly people are going dry, which ultimately means a one piece pricey drysuit. The two piece systems have issues for most people, though some out there have actually found them to be dry.

But you need to supply more info on where you plan to paddle, and how long into the season.