Kokatat Inner Core/Outer Core

Does anyone (such as Cabellas, etc.) carry garments similar to the Kokatat “Innercore” and “Outercore” that may be priced a bit less? (Are these just Kokatat’s version of standard Polartec gear?). I’m looking for garments to wear for cold water paddling in the spring, under a drysuit. Thanks in advance for your assistance.


Inner vs outer
Outer core is basically polypro, with a low nap. Kokatat has nice flat seaming to prevent chafing and good articulation for paddling.

The inner core stuff is more of a stretch lycra type material, not like polypro at all.

you could try NRS
You could try NRS. I have one of their Wavelight shirts and like it a lot. I think they are similar to the InnerCore.

Then again, Kokatat makes some good stuff. Sometimes it is worth spending the few extra bucks…

I have several Kokatat inner and outer core pieces in my kayaking wardrobe. They are decent garments, but I have come to prefer Mysterioso garments. They have a softer hand and a slight better fit on me. Regrettably Mysterioso does not seem to have the dealer network Kokatat does.


What about mixing layers?

– Last Updated: Mar-12-10 7:20 PM EST –

I have found that I do best with mixing layers in a way that involves different manufacturers. As a bonus, I end up with a base layer that is good by itself on cool days in spring and fall for other activities or just around the house on a winter's night. And I can hunt for relatively steep sales on them.

For ex, my best base layer is CoolMax or something very close to it - doesn't matter who makes it. The next layer depending on season can be fleece, I prefer Malden Mills material but a lot of manufacturers use their stuff, or someone who has a thinner but still wicking synthetic layer. I've found a couple of manufacturers that have some good midweight proprietary synthetics, so I wait for them to go on steep discount on a couple of sites.

So - much as I like the Kokatat products, I have found that it is not critical to go to their stuff for under their dry suits. In fact I do better on performance and cost by mixing that up.

NRS was mentioned - they have a union suit that is OK. But Mountain Equipment Coop had one that was even better - pure Polartec - because you didn't have to remember to pull it out before the dryer load. If that shows up again, I'd recommend it.

I have a selection of garments that I can wear for paddling, including under my dry suit, from over six different manufacturers: Mysterioso, Kokatat, Patagonia, Marmot, NRS, Campmor, EMS, Mountain Surf, etc. This allows me to tailor the insulation and wicking I need for a given day’s weather conditions and water temperatures.

I didn’t purchase these clothing items just for paddling. I also wear some layers for hiking, backpacking, cycling and cross country skiing.