Cold weather comfort?

We got our kayaks this summer and are addicted. Now it’s getting cold and now we want to paddle through the winter too. Nothing extreme, we’re too hedonistic to go out in the rain, strong wind and such, but we want to be able to go out on say, 50 degree days and be comfortable. I’d like to be able to fish in such weather too. Any advice on clothing, gloves, footwear and such would be great.

Thanks in advance.

Dress for the

– Last Updated: Dec-11-07 10:15 PM EST –

water temps and not the air temps.

You mentioned the air temp and not the water temp.

Possible attire - dry suit, wet suit, polar fleece under garments, neopreme booties etc...

Then jump in the water (stay near shore) and swim around for a bit. Now you will know how well you are prepared.

You could also dress for the air temp and stay VERY close to shore just in case. Just bring an extra set of clothes in a dry bag.

You need to evaluate the water temp, air temp, your abilities to get back in/on the yak, your ability to stay in/on the yak in the water conditions and the time to get to shore dry off and change.

I am using
A semi-dry top that may as well be a splash jacket over a 200 wt fleece shirt and neoprene pants along the Orange County coast. I use some neo booties and I do not bother with gloves and I spend a fair amount of time upside down. I paddled Tahoe alot the past 3 winters and used full on drysuits and gloves and hoods. You can pick up some fleece lined neoprene gloves at Walmart. They work as well as any expensive “paddling glove” I have tried.

I thought you said cold
50 isn’t cold, hell it ain’t even cool!

What my wife and I have been using
for many years and it works great for us:

  • Clothing:

    For undergarments: a light weight pair of either polar fleece or polypro long johns and a long sleeve jersey of the same.

    If it is a cold day we wear a heavier duty polar fleece top over that.

    For outer wear we wear water proof light weight splash pants and a splash jacket (with hood). Marmot and North Face both make good ones.

    For our feet we use NRS Boundary Shoes and light weight smart wool socks.

    The boundary shoes are knee high and waterproof and are great for standing in the water to launch your boat.

    The socks are just about a must, since your feet will sweat and the boots are hard to get off unless you have them.

    If it is real cold and windy I’ll usually also wear a knitted stocking hat that I can pull down over my ears.