Storm Cags

I plan to add a storm cag to my quiver. Any experience with the Seals version? I have seen plenty of reviews on the Kokatats. Very little on the Seals version.

Seals Storm Cag

Kokatat Storm Cag

My Kokatat storm cag
is one of the best pieces of gear I’ve ever bought.

Seals Cag
I believe that is is quite similar to the cag Valley sold as the Seal Suit or something which was a version of the Rasdec Storm Cag. Long tradition. Fabric is heavy, tough, waterproof and not breathable which I think is great for standing on a windy beach in cool weather, but it is heavier and bulkier than the Kok cag. That may be a plus or negative depending upon your needs. For day and weekend trips I prefer the Rasdec because I believe it is tough and can take abuse while being very functional.

I have seen the Seals ones and did not think they were as well made as the old Rasdec ones, but that might be nostalgia clouding my judgement.

also might consider the Kokatat GoreTex
For me packability is key with this piece of kit, as I’d like it to always be available in my day hatch. I looked at a RasDek some time ago, and it was way too bulky. Tropos light will be better in that regard, but I worry about longevity. The ultimate would be the Kokatat GoreTex Cag, but it comes at a premium (a bit over $300)

Does anyone know if Kokatat will release a T3 version of the Cag, with lifetime warranty like the T3 paddling suits? Suz?

Valley cag (made by Seals)

– Last Updated: Mar-02-12 3:47 PM EST –

I bought one in October but haven't used it yet. Got it at half-price.

Strictly based on examination, it appears to be sturdy though bulky. It has reflective stripes, a brimmed hood, and a clever pocket design that can hold a chart on the outside, warm hands in the fleece-paneled inside kangaroo pouch, plus two zippered slash openings that allow you to put hands underneath. Nice touch allowing access to PFD pockets or drysuit pockets underneath without having to remove the cag.

The only gripe I have is related to the bulk: it only comes in one size, and it is huge on me. OTOH, that means it is big enough to serve as a mini-shelter on land. If I sit with knees bent close to my chest, I have full coverage down to the ground.

If you want something very light and compact, Dale Williams (?) out of Tybee makes a ripstop nylon version under the name Expedition -something.

For many it’s too bad Kokatat makes them only out of Goretex since that may not be the best choice for a cag even if you have the money. A drysuit you wear throughout the day so you want warmth for water or cold wind but you want it to breathe when you’re pushing hard and sweating. But a cag is often only worn right when you need it which is when you are cold (often windy). A non-breathable cag would likely keep you a bit warmer and cost a lot less and if you get warm enough to sweat you take it off. I had tried to get an Expedition Essentials one that fit the bill but they seemed to have discontinued that one.

Seals vs. Kokatat
I have a Rasdex which is very similar to the Seals. The Seals and Rasdex are bulkier than Kokatat, but I keep mine stuffed into a compression dry bag. It is about the size of a softball and is always ready in my day hatch. I prefer the non-breathable fabric because it will keep you warmer than a breathable fabric. In Florida last week I had to give mine to a student who was cold after a capsize and some rescue practice. The air temp was near 80F, water 68F, but the wind was fairly strong and we were in an exposed area causing him to chill. It worked great and the paddler warmed up in about 20 minutes.

Reed Chill Cheater
At least throw this one into the equation.


Was about to ask you…
How was Sweetwater?

I’ll never forget Jean pulling out a heavy-duty bright orange trash bag for someone to wear during lunch. That was the day I threw my paddle at the wind so it could smack it straight back to my waiting hands. Could’ve been even more of a whack with huge blades.

chill cheater
agree with Lyn completely. A cag is usually for when you are really cold. why get just a plain nylon one? the chill cheater is made of their proprietary stretchy fabric with the fleece-like lining. Much warmer than just nylon. I got one and love it. Very warm. Disadvantage is that it is a bit bulkier to pack and harder to get on and off maybe, but worth it.

worth it?
If it’s hard to get on and off when you need it, who cares if it’s warmer?

A can that you can’t get on or off isn’t warmer. Just my 2¢.

totally worth it
I paddle in icy waters and air temps frequently and this is my favorite “piece of kit” as they say. Seconds after landing it’s on and it’s the last thing off and at the top of my day hatch on launching. The warmth and wind protection it provides is priceless. The others are fine for keeping a warm rain off your spray deck or changing in a parking lot, but in a real storm they flap around like a flag and the noise drove me crazy, I gave mine away at a silent auction. For real protection and comfort the Chillcheater just rocks.


I don’t question the worth of a cag
It’s the worth of a cag that you can’t put on on the water that I wonder about. If it’s only good on shore, then maybe it needs a new name. My cag (not chill cheaters) goes on on the water just fine. It’s big and loose fitting and cuts the wind. My metabolism provides the heat. The cag provides another layer of insolation.

Check out the new website. There are a bunch of photos up. Also, a pic of you in the 2010 photos (very tiny right now, but I’ll send them the originals).

how did we get from
HARDER to get on and off (true) to can’t to put on on the water (false)?

I’ve put it on and taken it off while afloat several times. Not as easy to do as with a cag with velcro at the wrists. So what?


the “so what” is in the
comparison. I thought that’s what we were doing–comparing them. It’s kind of like asking which kayak is better. An obvious question one wants to settle first is “for what?” A cag that suits one person’s needs may not suit the needs of someone else. I’d love to have a Chill Cheater cag, I just don’t have enough money to reduplicate gear, and it doesn’t suit my needs as well as an Expedition Essentials.


– Last Updated: Mar-03-12 2:04 PM EST –

Thanks for all the feedback.I bought a Seals Storm Cag on line for $125.00.Not a budget buster. It was slightly used. I got it for a week long camping/paddling trip in early April. It should suit my needs;for the trip, if the weather turns nasty. After that the cag will live in my ditch bag. Thanks again.


Looked at one today - $220 new, but it is a breathable fabric.

Expedition Essentials Cag…
…is the one that Dale Williams, who previously owned Sea Kayak Georgia, sold.

I’m not sure if they’re still available. We have them made in 2005 and they’re nice as they’re very compact, but the newer version, possibly made in 2006, is very crinkly and “noisy”. We keep them in the Extra Warming Kit bag.

We have SEALs cags and love them. True, they are bulky and large, but they’re sturdy and warm, or as warm as something that’s not breathable can be.

And I’m with Lyngo. I’ve seen her Reed Cag and it’s a beauty. If I had extra money, that’s what I’d get.