I had a Kokatat Supernova semi-dry suit about 5+ years ago for rafting but rarely used it and sold it. Now that I’m paddling a SOT kayak I decided to try another semi-dry suit. I used some Christmas money and took advantage of a 20% off sale with free shipping. The Kokatat Surge semi-dry paddling suit arrived today. Looks great & seems to fit nicely. As I have posted in another thread, I’m a plus sized paddling gal who isn’t overly tall, so I appreciate that Kokatat makes drysuits in a Womens XL short sizing. I can see that getting used to the Switch Zip will take a little practice, but it seems night & day better than the giant butt zipper I had in the Supernova. Plus the overall appearance of the suit is way more attractive without that big butt zipper. The suit came with a tube of Zip Tech zipper lube. The adjustable neo neck seems more user friendly than the punch thru neo neck on the Supernova. The suit has a lot of adjustment shock cords , and a zippered sleeve pocket that’s handy.
How do you eliminate the excess air in the suit, mainly in the socks? I suppose starting with the pants on and loose, putting feet in shoes, working air upwards, cinching ankles, then cinching pants & zipping into the top? I did a test try on of the suit and that method worked ok, but I still seemed to have extra air in the socks which made putting on my shoes difficult.
That brings me to the next question…shoes. I’m used to Keen river sandals & socks (either thin fin socks when warm or Seal Skins when cold). My feet fit fairly well in the Keens with a Smartwool sock under the dry suit socks, but not super well. I’m wondering what other paddlers wear for shoes that might be easier to put on and more protective of the dry suit socks?
Thanks in advance for helping out a “born again” drysuit novice.