Recommend a dry top?

Recent Sierra Trading Post catalog shows a Rage-in Wear dry jacket for about $139. I keep thinking about getting a dry jacket to make cold weather paddling more efficient. For now I would start with a decent jacket over farmer john long pants, with a variety of layering options for different degrees of cold and rough weather.

As there are many brands, I ask the assembled minds here what experience they might have had with different ones. This site doesn’t provide comprehensive clothing listings to match the extensive boat listings.

I have a RaginWear Drytop
Not that happy with it. The tunnel is flimsy and it is a bit uncomfortable not tailored right and does not stay all that dry.

I Would Wait
until they get some Bombergear stuff in. I love my Bombergear long and shortie drytops. Just love 'em.

I think they have some stohlquist tops there right now. It’s a brand name…


Flimsy does not sound good. Explains the price and availability. Thanks.

This particular catalog did not have Stohlquist. And I don’t mind paying for something good rather than waiting for it to show up in a discount catalog. The catalog just prodded me into thinking about it again.

Research marches on.


Check On Line
rather than the catalog. By the time the catalog gets to you, the real good items are gone (or at least in the size you may want).


I am swinging by the outlet store
tomorrow. I can check for bargains.

Than The Main Consideration

– Last Updated: Jul-11-05 4:42 AM EST –

if money is no problem is whether you want Goretex over the other breatheable laminates. Some feel Goretex is unbeatable for breatheability. I personally have and don't think the performance of my Goretex Kokatat drysuit is much different from my drytops by Bombergear, Rapidstyle (my second favorite, losing out to the sleeve pocket and built in dry bag in the chest pocket of the Bombergear Hydrology top) and IR which use other than Goretex. I tend to sweat like a pig so your mileage may vary. When it comes to drytops, I prefer the roomier more active cuts of the drytops aimed at the white water crowd.


i just picked up
a Stohlquist Freeride drytop off ebay for $51.00. New with tags, not seconds and no flaws. I’ve been looking for awhile, so if you’re not in a rush you can find some deals.


A Link For a Drytop Tutorial?
I dont need a dry top now, but I am thinking about this winter. We have many days which are fine for getting on the water during our winters. I am thinking of getting something for next winter and will need protection for water temps near fifty and air temps also in the fifties.

I dont know anything about dry tops. It has been a long time since I got into my wetsuit as I dont dive in the cold anymore. What is available. I have read many times that the key is “dress for immersion” and want to keep that in mind. My paddling during the winter will be mostly in quiet water and not far from shore.



here’s my previous post on this.
This was from the “one piece of equipment” thread.

“You can’t really go wrong with any of the major brands (Mountain Surf, Kokatat, Stohlquist, NRS, Palm, Immersion Research, etc.) but there are different aspects you should consider. Breathability of the fabric is definitely a good thing. Goretex is great but there are many other fabrics out there now that have similar performance for less cost although Goretex still has the best warranty in the business. Many sea kayakers feel that the Kokatat Goretex line of dry clothing is the best out there. I personally think they are really nice although not as durable for something like whitewater compared to NRS, Palm, IR, or Mountain Surf. I personally use an NRS Revolution dry top ( which is the toughest dry top I have ever seen and it breathes great. If you don’t need that level of toughness, NRS has come out with an affordable lower level dry top as well ( For my shorty dry top (cold water-warm air days), I picked one a Stohlquist Gush Shorty from sierra trading post for cheap ( They also have several other older model stohlquist drytops that are really great bargains. Here’s a Goretex shorty ( and a Goretex long sleeve drytop ( both which are about half off.

(if you can’t tell I like drytops!)”

here’s a great tutorial

Great information in that site in regards to drssing for immersion.

Money and gear
Money is always a problem. Loading the car today to go paddling for the first time in too damn long, I discovered a gushing transmission leak.

Fortunately, we had another car handy, but had to transfer all the rack accessories to it, delaying our start. No telling what the tranny repair will entail. Even 1993 Ford Escorts have their limits.

Anywaaaaaay, I’ve had mixed feelings about Gore Tex for 20 years. I’ve used it in mountaineering/climbing clothing and bike stuff, and been glad I never paid full pop for it. Sweat happens.

Polls are running in favor of Bomber Gear so far. If the car repair doesn’t take too big a bite, I’ll shop around.

Years of sailing and diving had given me a preference for the versatility of wetsuits, but in certain conditions you can’t wear enough rubber to be safe, and still move your arms. In warmer conditions, where prolonged immersion might be a problem, neoprene has its place, as you can tool around with a zipper open and still zip it up if you get dumped and take on a bunch of water. Not so with a dry suit. If it ain’t dry in there, you’re basically screwed.

Certain transitional weather and seriously cold weather (both air and water) tilt the balance toward the dry suit again, because you can layer under it to balance body temperature to suit air conditions, possible precipitation, etc.

You just end up with a closet full of this stuff. But eskimos owned a lot of skins, too. The only difference is materials.