Having just passed the summer solstice, I thought it might be a good time to remind everyone that winter kayaking season is right around the corner.
I recommend planning to go regularly as the weather turns, to ensure you gradually acclimate – to provide inspiration, I’ve put up this photo album from the last two winters I’ve kayaked in Michigan: Kayak Winter bestof
And here’s a summary of the winter kayak gear I’ve found most important, with specific brands I currently use:
- PFD: NRS Ninja – always wear a PFD!
- Dry Suit (water temp below 50F): Kokatat Supernova Angler Semi-dry suit (this is the gore-tex model, I recommend orange! layer underneath, typically fleece over spandex. semi-dry suit (vs. dry suit) best if you’re not an eskimo-roller)
- Wet Suit (water temp between 50 and 60F): NRS 3mm Farmer Bill Wetsuit (sleeveless)
- Storm Hood: NRS Storm Hood
- Boots: NRS Boundary Boots (knee-high, waterproof, cinched top)
- Socks: Sealskinz Cold Weather Mid Length Sock (supplement with Grabber foot warmers below 22F or on longer / windier trips)
- Mittens / Gloves: Proviz Classic Waterproof Gloves (work for me down to 22F, heavy ski mitten below that, I often alternate during trip – supplement mittens with Grabber hand warmers for windier / colder days)