Talk Tuiliqs to me

Having recently acquired a Tahe Greenland my spouse and I need a spray skirt or an akuilisaq or a tuiliq. We only used the latter a couple of times at Delmarva and were focused on other things, so didn’t really register if we liked it better than a spray skirt.

We plan to use the boat to practice rolling and Greenland skills, and it would be great if we could share the skirt or Tuiliq instead of having to buy two. We’re only about 25 lbs and 3 inches apart in size. Could we share one Tuiliq if we went that route? How crucial is sizing?

More generally, what are the pros and cons on tuiliqs vs other paddling gear? Right now we’re not paddling in the winter and own no dry suits. Rolling skills are minimal but we want to keep learning. We’d like to paddle in the shoulder season as well as summer.

Thanks for your thoughts and advice.

I had a Brooks tuiliq way back when (?). Definitely, helpful with learning/doing the Greenland rolls because of the extra buoyancy. Can’t remember what size I had but there was room in the body to accommodate someone bigger, however the arms would be tight for someone much bigger than me (depends on where that 25lbs difference is located for the other person). So, if you want to share, you likely have to go up a size.

Eventually, I got rid of the tuiliq. It was fine for colder weather paddling by itself, but you have to commit to “roll or die” because if you come out of the boat, the large coaming opening would essentially nullify any immersion protection. If you size the tuiliq a bit bigger to accommodate either a wetsuit/drysuit, then there is a good chance that you will overheat (unless you are out paddling in “Greenland type cold” and you are willing integrate periodic rolling in your paddle to “cool” off).

Ultimately, I settled for a drysuit for paddling. When I got more into surfing and rock play than general paddling, I ditched the drysuit for a wetsuit. I think the latter is “safer” for what I like to do.


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My husband and I both have tuiliqs and dry suits. Wearing them both allows us to get out for some December rolling (Coastal British Columbia) Using the dry suit alone would not be enough.

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It really surprises me how few paddlers have ever tried an akuilisaq. It provides a similar level of freedom of motion as a tuiliq (and way more than a spray skirt), but it’s more versatile, as it easily pairs with any type of paddling garment. It’s much cooler than a tuiliq, which makes it usable and comfortable in warm weather. Paired with a dry suit and a hood, it’s great for cold weather, too. To my mind, it’s the best of all worlds.


Thanks, very helpful. Sing, from what you said I guess the Tuiliq would then mostly be useful for paddling in shoulder season when it’s cool but not cold.

Bnystrom, you convinced me. I want to try the akuilisaq.

Lila, did you have to size up when buying tuiliqs for use over a drysuit? Do you need a different size if you use one for shoulder season and one with a drysuit?

We did not size up the tuiliqs to ensure they would go over the dry suits. Mine is a small and my husbands is probably a large…they are pretty “roomy” and there is lots of room for the dry suit under. The hood takes a bit to figure out how to tie it off so that no water gets in around the face. The wrists have velcro so you can get a nice tight seal. In the “shoulder” season we don’t use the tuiliqs… just put warmer layers under the dry suit and use balaclavas. We quite enjoy having and using the tuiliqs. They really do keep you warm and they do provide some buoyancy for rolling…. I always find rolling easier when wearing the tuiliq. And they look so cool!!! Just want to mention one thing…if you are out rolling in cold weather and are wearing gloves keep in mind that if you blow a roll and need to bail it is difficult to “feel” the pull strap on the the spray skirt with gloves on…… it happened to me once and I thought I was going to die :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:. I now have a large ring around my loop so I can feel it with gloves on.


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Like Lila, I live in the Northwest and currently use a Brooks tuiliq with a drysuit underneath. I can stay cool enough up to about 50 degrees by pulling the hood down and not wearing gloves. Periodic rolls to wet the tuiliq (I pull up the hood first) help too. For warmer days, I’m intrigued by this product ( AQUATHERM TUILIQ PADDLESUIT – Reed Chillcheater Limited ) as it appears to be about as insulating as a drysuit alone. Anyone have experience with it?