Sprayskirt for my new Fathom

I received so many helpful replies to my recent posts about choosing my new kayak, and I’m hoping you’ll come through for me one more time.

I’m looking for a sprayskirt for my new Fathom. All my paddling now is on calm water, but I’d like to branch out to some coastal paddling in the harbors soon. Before I do that I want to have a sprayskirt.

Two that I’m considering are the Wildwasser Pocket System Neo-Nylon and the Snap Dragon Glacier Trek. Both are combination nylon and neoprene.

I’d appreciate any thoughts on these two options or any others I should consider. Also, if you have a Fathom, would you tell me what sprayskirt you use?

Glacier Trek, plusses and minusses
I don’t have a Fathom but I do have three Glacier Trek skirts that I’m happy with (different boats and cockpit sizes/shapes).

The nylon tube with adjustable neoprene top is helpful in hot weather, or anytime you feel clammy inside the boat. Opening it a little to allow air to go in and out feels good on such days. You can quickly seal it tight if necessary.

There is a variant called the Flirt with a shorter tube, intended for those of us who don’t have long torsos. This is what I got for my latest boat. I like the shorter tube’s fit.

I have examined my skirts with bright light behind them, and the nylon portions have too many stitchholes, IMO. Very tiny stitchholes, but holes nonetheless. This could be remedied with seam sealant tape or Aquaseal. I haven’t felt it necessary to do so. But it you want the absolutely driest skirt, an all-neoprene one might be better. In practice, I have not noticed much difference in water intrusion between all-neo skirts and the Glacier Treks. This is after lots of rolling practice (50 to 70 rolls). Most of the water must get in either through the top of the tube or through the rim area, not the in-between portion of the skirt.

The question I have is “Why doesn’t Snap Dragon make an all-neoprene skirt with the same adjustable top band as the Glacier Trek’s?” Seems like it’d be easy enough to make.

Snap Dragon Glacier Trek
Use this on my Nighthawk 16 and it has held up to kayak surfing and rolling attempts. Water will get in through the top a bit but not much. I would recommend it. I have no experience with the other model sprayskirt you mentioned.

So you took the plunge and got the Fathom. Great boat!

Most sprayskirt manufacturers have a fit chart on their website. NRS carries quite a few brands.


The Fathom is a newer boat and may not be listed, but it takes the same size as the Nighthawk 16.

while neoprene skirt are the norm
they aren’t anymore the cutting edge stuff.

I know it’s a preponderous statement that might upset few diehard neoprene users but there is tuff out there way better then neoprene.

In my circles we are all swapping to Reed by Chillcheater.

It works way better then neoprene. It’s seam selaed with tape that does not peel off, it’s really waterproof, much lighter then neoprene, does not go funky after a while (like neoprene does) and breathes which makes it great for hotter climates.

Reed skirts dry much faster too.

Sounds like I have shares in the company but that ain’t the case. I just want to pass on my findings for other to benefit from.

Feel free to argue but unless you have tried both you have no ground to stand on…

You can order them on line although a bit spendy since they come from UK.

Not sure if there is a USA improrter.


So far…
Glacier Trek seems to have a good reputation and I appreciate your input. I did read about the Reed sprayskirts and I appreciate the referral, but they are indeed pricey and beyond my budget right now. I’ll keep them in mind though.

No reports on the Wildwasser skirt yet. Anyone else want to weigh in on those or any other brand?