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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:14 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2007 7:10 pm
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Location: Rio Vista, CA
My wife and I would like to continue sailing our AI's this winter. To that end we purchased matching Kokatat Super Nova semi-dry suits (matching because that was the only color available). Last Sunday after church, drawn by the good winds (18-20mph), we donned our new suits and jumped in the river. After only about 30 minutes of sailing we discovered that, while our bodies were comfy and dry, our hands and feet were going numb. We were wearing heavy athletic socks inside our suits and our non-insulated Teva water shoes over them. On our hands we had cheap "Warmers" sailing gloves. The air temperature was 59*F and water was much colder. The good wind and the chop ensured that our hands were constantly wet. And while our feet stayed (almost) completely dry inside our suits they were constantly being washed over with the cold water.

I know. We are wimpy Californians. I'm sure some of you northern types consider 59*F a warm sunny day! Well that is why we need your help. I don't want to spend a couple hundred dollars on gloves, socks, and booties, only to discover they are not going to work.

So I'm calling on you hardcore cold water guys and girls. What works for you? What keeps you warm and still lets you grip a line? I don't mind spending good money for quality stuff but I hate wasting money on junk that doesn't do the job or falls apart. Throw me your personal recommendations.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:43 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Posts: 1691
Location: South Florida
Rio Dan, pogies are commonly worn by cold water paddlers (I've worn them myself in Alaska). Some of them are insulated and are quite toasty. The problem is, if you are wearing neoprene-type gloves, the water evaporating from the gloves causes your hands to cool drastically. Pogies prevent that problem.

For your feet, consider Sealskinz socks--they work.

Keith


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2007 6:15 pm 
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Location: Rio Vista, CA
The Sealskinz socks sound good under the suit socks and then some good thick booties.

You can't be serious about pogies though? Pull lines and steer with pogies on? Whatcha smokin' there Keith? :wink:

Anybody else out there with some ideas for me?


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2007 6:55 pm 
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Location: South Florida
Jeah, Rio, some pogies might be too stiff, but others would work.

As I said, most water gloves are some sort of neoprene or knitted material. When this is wet and with the wind blowing, there is too much heat loss due to evaporation. Another solution is plain commercial fisherman/lobsterman gloves--large, rubberized gloves. These go over your wool or fleece gloves. These have rather large openings for your hands--they may have to be closed somehow. Otherwise, just get some rubber-coated gloves with a wrist closure to wear over your warm gloves. Again these rubber coated gloves over fleece gloves (or even neoprene gloves) work. They are a low tech solution that works.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2007 7:52 am 
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Location: South Florida
Rio--Why don't you buy a dodger? It will keep most of the water and wind off. Here is a picture of Dave Whitford's boat w/ dodger.
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 1:42 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2005 11:04 pm
Posts: 615
Location: Hawaii, Big Island
I bought some stuff from NRS, but not gloves. Excellent quality.

I note in their catalog they make 3 types for cold weather with neoprene running from .5 mm to as much as 3mm. All have thermal plush lining to retain body heat. Various coatings repel water. Prices ran from $29 to $ 38

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 Post subject: Staying warm in Wyoming
PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2007 7:15 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 8:19 pm
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Location: Jackson Hole, Wyoming
A friend with an AI here in Wyoming has found the following invaluable:

1) A goretex dry suit with integrated socks. We have suits made by Kokatat. While pricey, they may save your life. An added bonus is that they add substantial flotation. Wearing heavy fleece pants and top inside adds a lot of warmth.

2) Extra warm neoprene gloves.

3) A neoprene face mask used by skiers.

4) Chemical warmers. Go to www.warmers.com for more info. You can't wear them next to skin because of the heat they generate. You can put them into the goretex socks of your drysuit. A muff of some kind lets you occasionally slide a hand in to warm up a bit. Warmers.com has a "Cozy Muff" designed for this (which unfortunately isn't waterproof; good luck rigging something up).

Two AI's on order for springtime '08 delivery,

Chris

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2007 7:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 4:50 pm
Posts: 461
Location: sacramento california
Hey Ya R.D.
Have you ever seen that Yellow Windrider Rave docked over by Decker Island just past Sheldon Sails a bit ? It looks like a real pocket rocket but I've never seen it out on the water. I usually see it roped up on a private dock whenever my buddy and I take his Hobie 16 out to Sherman Island.
Anyway you could always try using neoprene surf booties and gloves if you still need some cold water footwear ideas. I use them in the winter when surfing down in Santa Cruz and they keep my feet warm enough for several hours. I think it could work pretty well in the river too and they were only about $30 dollars on sale. Picked em up at a surf shop down there 8 years ago and still using them. Hotline is the brand name I have but there's O' Neil and a lot of other brands out there as well. A nice neoprene hood on your head can help keep your hands and feet warm too..go figger :wink:
Cheers
Kepnutz


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2008 10:33 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2007 6:47 pm
Posts: 94
I just got my Kokatat Super Nova Paddling suit and I thought I would try it out in my indoor pool. (I don't use Chlorine, so no worries there).

The suit was amazing! Unlike dry suits, the collar is comfortable. I went all the way under and I didn't get any water through the neck area, but I can see if you want to go scuba diving in this it would let water in.

And, the air in the suit acted as flotation. I never used a dry suit before, and I must say it was pretty cool. I went swimming fully clothed and didn't get a drop of water on me.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2008 7:01 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2007 7:10 pm
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Location: Rio Vista, CA
Yes, we love our Kokatat SN suits.

We bought a couple pair of the Sealskinz waterproof socks. We found them uncomfortable under the booties. We found a local dive shop in Vacaville and got some thinsulate socks. These are not waterproof but that doesn't matter inside the dry suits. They are a lot more comfortable than the Sealskinz. Over that we got some 7mm booties. For our hands we got some waterproof insulated gloves. These weren't cheap as they had to be custom made. Normally these are made with hard plastic cuffs that lock and seal to a matching drysuit. For us they removed the plastic cuffs and bonded onto them standard drysuit wrist seals. Like I said not, not cheap at $100 a pair.

Because of the constant rain here we have only been out once with our new gear. But WOW, what a difference. Our feet stay nice and warm and our hands, while not toasty, are much warmer too. In our old gear our hands and feet went numb after about 30 minutes.

If we can get out again in the next week (if this dang rain will quit) I'll write up a full review here with pics and a link to the dive shop that so accommodated us (thanks Kathy). Our one trip out was rather short and I don't think was a proper test of the new gear.


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