Drysuit Footwear and Headware Advice

I got a used kokatat dry suit from ebay with latex neck and ankle seals, but no attached boots or hood.

Whats the best footware and hood? I have 7mm neoprene scuba boots and a hood, but these will not work with the latex seals unless they go outside of the suit.


The hood will have to stay
out of the suit and with all that money you saved send the suit to Kokatat for bootie installation.

Kayak booties will fit between the ankle gasket and the velcro cinch…but I am guessing your scuba ones are thick and inflexible and dont fit in the boat.

They do go outside of the suit. And I
agree, have Kokatat add the booties. It’s so worth it. And then wear them with neoprene boots over them.

Using scuba stuff

– Last Updated: Nov-19-08 8:27 AM EST –

Come winter we are usually in a mix of scuba stuff and paddling stuff. We like the Deep Sea dry gloves, for ex, because they are as warm and leave more feeling behind than the paddling Reactor gloves. I have the latter, but my fingertips end up being cold in a way that is never a problem with the Deep Sea gloves.

The diff between the newer diving mukluk type dry boots and the similar NRS boots is minimal to none - in fact I plan to use a gift certificate to order a pair of the mukluks from a local dive shop next week. With a drysuit with booties you shouldn't need 7mm of boots, and you may find that they start getting tight inside the boat. But if they don't threaten a wet exit and you don't have a suit with booties, they'll work well for you.

As to the hoods - we both have an ice cap and I also have a 5mm Henderson hood. These are great for rolling etc practice in really cold stuff, but once you are paddling, they are actually a little too warm. I find that I am better off doubling up two lighter hoods, like the NRS Mystery hood and Kokatat's with the fleece bit that comes up over your chin, if things get really nasty. If you have one of the lighter weight dive hoods, closer to 2mm than 5, they'd do as well.

I know someone who mates the Deep Sea gloves, but I've never bothered and as long as I start moving my hands after a lunch break I am fine. The other stuff doesn't mate. The scuba equivalents tend to be a little cheaper than the same gear from a paddling outfitter at full price.

Thank you for all your comments.

NRS Rodeo shoe
It’s not 7mm but it is neoprene (no mesh) and goes above the ankle AND it fits over my latex ankle gaskets just fine. I secure the drysuit’s Velcro overflap over the booties.

various combos for head gear
depends on what you’re doing and temp of water. There’s various kinds of heavy lycra hood liners that will be plenty warm in cold wind with hat on but inadequate for immersion.

I don’t find neoprene worthwhile unless i’m always getting hit with water/partial immersion. The combo of hood liner and fuzzy rubber hood is mighty good for immersion and paddling because the outer waterproof hood can be pulled back, in dicey stuff it can be pulled over, in the water it has a good seal to slow down the rush of cold water into the ear canal, with both on you can still hear ok.