Paddling hat for South Florida

Boony / Boonie
The military surplus store near me sells boonies for about $8. That’s what I use.

what can I say? I got lucky. Hardly arranged though. Had to do some serious convincing.

You see I used to be young and good looking once…


Me too, and
most of them are “freebies”.

I like the ones that you can con from the paddling reps.

The Wenonah rep gave us ones and stipulated that they had to be worn in all our races.

Little does he know that I ware it when I am racing the QCC kayak!

They work great in South Florida too since if it is extremely hot, you just scope up a hat full of water and put the whole thing on your head.





Paul, yes, I found and bought a demo OI.

I’m extremely happy with it.

Thanks again for your help.

SundayAfternoons makes great hats
for complete sun protection.

Baseball caps —bad idea
I’d discourage the baseball cap idea. My father wore them for all his many outdoor adventures to protect his bald noggin’. Bummer is they didn’t protect his ears. At 81 he’s had to have skin cancer burned of his ears twice and just said the heck with it the third time and had them remove the tops. Nah, it doesn’t really look that bad but the radiation caused him to have teeth problems for the first time in his life. If you wear baseball caps keep your hair a little long so it is over the tops of your ears.

I, a one-time cool dude that loved long hair and had to listen to my Pops constant deriding of it was shocked when he told me to never get my hair cut above my ears. ‘You gotta protect yourself boy, it ain’t no fun getting your ears burned up’. Well, now I wear my hair short and always have a Tilley around.

Have a good 'un,


OR Seattle Sombrero
I live in northern FL, and use the OR Seattle Sombrero hat everytime I go out. I’ve never had any problems concerning heat, and would recommend it to anyone. The hat has held up well to the sun, salt, etc, and I have not had any issues with the velcro on the sides of the hat, although I rarely fold the sides up in the summer FL sun.

Has anyone tried this hat
called a Riverz Delta? Looks nice but I’ve never seen one in person.


It’s made of something called Techstraw - a polypropylene weave, floats, looks pretty good, has a cord for the wind. But it’s hard to buy a $60 hat without trying it on. I’m kind of a hat snob and also have a big coconut (xxl), so am tough to please. And those rain hats kill me with overheating. I may bite the bullet and just get one - I don’t want to lose my Stetson straw hat on a windy day…

I use…
The “Ultimate Hat” made in Tampa, FL. Much like the Tilley, perhaps lighter made, and less expensive. Worn it for about six years now, from cold rain in New England to sun in Nicaragua, it works great.


the Adventure or the Sport…excellent products.

KAVU Chilba!!!

-floats…sun protection…i did add my own chin string though…

bu i usually end up wearing a visor…does not come off my noggin as easy as a ball cap…i can get them tighter around my oversized head…plus as was also mentioned they are great rep freebies!!!

and yep i never wear the seattle sombrero that i have had now for about 10 years…

Visor for warm or hot conditions
If it’s your eyes you are protecting and not your head, a visor works great for hot weather. I can’t stand hats unless it’s cold or raining–too hot! Even mesh-paneled hats aren’t cool enough for me.

The visor helps my sunglasses do their job by cutting off light from the top. It makes a big difference in eye comfort. It also helps hold them in place in wind.

I recently bought a Kavu visor with a clever adjustment on the band. If the wind increases and I need to tighten it, all I have to do is pull on a ring. With Velcro’d visors, I had to undo the band first to reposition to a tighter setting. That moment of being undone is one that makes the visor vulnerable to being whipped away on a gust.

Ultimate Hats
The best for water sports. tough as nails. Ugly. Can’t beat it. Get the canvas version, the ripstop nylon is not UV proof. My dermatologist will vouch for that. I have had three in 20 years. You simply cannot kill them. Great neck and ear protection. Adjustible strap under the chin. Can’t blow it off.

where are the pics of the
aluminum foil hats? perfect for florida lightning weather

along with your carbon paddle…



One with ear muffs…
At least for a few days…

Good point but
I have shoulder length really curly poofy hair, and lots of it. Keeping it OFF my ears and neck is a feat in itself.

So I guess that’s why a baseball cap works for me.

Echo other comments
I was given a Sombrero recently and for Fall paddling here in Virginia it has been great - it is big and to my eye not the sexiest hat out there, but hey I’m paddling. Great sun coverage. Just got back from a trip to Honduras and did a little paddling with it and it was hot. You can always dunk it, but I would probably spend my money elsewhere.

Second the Kavu!!!
I’ve also got the Seattle Sombrero, which is a great hat, but it’s hot. The Kavu is a little weird looking but boy does it work. Its interesting that younger folks say “cool hat” when they see it. Older folks think its weird.

Got my hat at a local military surplus
store for 15 bucks. Wide leather brim, stiff but flexible nylon mesh separating the brim from the leather top and adjustable leather chin-strap. It’s lasted me over 12 years. Not a bad investment as it still has a quite a few good years left in it. Still using a heavy dose of sunscreen in combination with the hat because in spite of my long lineage as a native floridian I’ve had several skin cancer growths removed and I do not wish to go through that again.

Tilley T4 Hemp hat
I have a cotton duck Tilley that I use most of the time, but for hot & sunny weather nothing beats my “backup” Tilley, the hemp T4. Larger brim to keep the bad rays off your ears & face, low-riding brim to keep the glare at an acceptable level, and the fabric swells in the rain to act as a pretty effective rain hat.

If you have UV concerns, as do I, a Tilley is your best choice.