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Cold weather kayak fishing gear


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I'm now a SOT fishing kayak owner and want to get out early while the water is still cold. I'm aware I have to be suited up for a dunk and be able to get back on the kayak quickly. I've looked at the options & seems to be more $ full dry suit and less $ wader & dry top combo. I don't want to wear my Mustang floater suit.

 

What gear & clothing do you go out in the colder weather? Also interested in trying the yak for waterfowl this fall. Thanks.

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Apparently some Wal marts have, level 6 dry suits on sale. Just what I have read. MISREAD. ME BAD

 

I dont have a yak, but do fish cold water on my pontoon. I wear me neo,s,river boots and have my PFD on.

 

Looking forward to another row and flip season. :Gonefishing:

Edited by Misfish
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Chest waders and a good drytop will keep you dry, especially if you have a PFD over the drytop. Just as important, your SOT needs to be rigged so that it does not impede re-entry. Ice-out is no time to find out how easy/hard it is to re-enter your yak. You should practice in conditions that are no threat to your safety.

 

Misfish, you should have read the entire post: spoons and raps are on sale at WalMart. The drysuit was ordered directly from Level 6 ;)

Edited by singingdog
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Chest waders and a good drytop will keep you dry, especially if you have a PFD over the drytop. Just as important, your SOT needs to be rigged so that it does not impede re-entry. Ice-out is no time to find out how easy/hard it is to re-enter your yak. You should practice in conditions that are no threat to your safety.

 

Misfish, you should have read the entire post: spoons and raps are on sale at WalMart. The drysuit was ordered directly from Level 6 ;)

 

Get yourself a rescue stirrup to aid in reentry. ;)

 

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I fish out of a SOT alot, not a cold weather kayak guy though, but I'm not keen on the idea of waders in the boat- if you dump and they fill with water that could lead to a dangerous situation IMO. Would try to avoid going out alone especially with cold water as well. Agree with singingdog that you should practice a dump and re-entery first in warmer weather. I would think its not too easy especially if you are going to be suited up. Perhaps also check out the yakfisher.net forums as well-lots of good advise from experienced kayak anglers there..skdds

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Misfish, you should have read the entire post: spoons and raps are on sale at WalMart. The drysuit was ordered directly from Level 6 ;)

 

Ya noticed that after. I took it as Evan bought there.

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I fish out of a SOT alot, not a cold weather kayak guy though, but I'm not keen on the idea of waders in the boat- if you dump and they fill with water that could lead to a dangerous situation IMO

A drytop, layered over chestwaders and under a PFD will keep the water out of the chestwaders. I have tested it in ice-out conditions several times. Most of the time, I actually wear drypants, which have less overlap than good chestwaders do. Been doing that for 7 years, on whitewater as well as flatwater with no issues.

 

I can't state strongly enough that proper clothing is only a small part of paddling safely in cold water. Proper self-rescue technique, knowledge of the water you are paddling, and judgement are all much more important. Going out on a small trout lake, where the longest swim would be less than 100 m, is a very different venture than heading out on Lake O. Moving water is a completely different story: multiply all the dangers by 10. Unfortunately, you can buy the clothing and convince yourself that you are prepared.

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Spend the money on a good drysuit with booties and not one that has a zipper across the back. I use a Kokatat Gore Tex (front entry, diagonal zip across chest to shoulder) for paddling and with a fleece bunnysuit underneath, comfortable in all except January or Feb temps. Wearing chest waders during a dump is gonna do jack all as the immediate cold water immersion on your skin is going to be what makes or breaks you, hence the drysuit. Also trying to get back on the SOT with a wader full of water (even with a belt, water will probably get in) will be a task. Safety first as a drysuit will give you time to assess the situation.

 

So I'd suggest Kokata or Stohlquist drysuits since they're made for active users and allow excellent mobility. I knew the guys who started Level Six and they make some innovative gear, their rash guards are popular. Former Olympic level C-paddlers.

Edited by woodenboater
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Thanks for the info. I'm planning on practicing a dump and self-rescue at a boat ramp with a spotter before I head out. Rescue stirrup looks good, also seen tying the paddler to the boat with carabiner-bunjee so the kayak doesnt get away in a dump.

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