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Old 05-13-2009   #1
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5
New rafter clothing question...

I've got a little 12' boat with rowing frame and planning on doing gentle rivers with class 3 or less - 2 in the boat. I could use some suggestions on clothing for these trips. Seems to me that layering is the way to go. A farmer john seems useful, but aren't they pretty warm on hot days? Paddle jackets seem to be for kayaks. Less is more, but how does this translate for rafting?

And what are your favorites??


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Old 05-14-2009   #2
Palisade, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 292
layering is always a good idea when warmth could be an issue. but fashion is important also. short cut-off jeans are back from '79, and most neon is still in...but in general, the less clothing the better, after-all, "nude rafting epitomizes the American experience". don't forget sunblock, them parts downthere are tender!

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Old 05-14-2009   #3
Vail, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1066
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 165
On most gentle rivers, exposure to the sun and rain are going to be the big things. On Class 2, you will likely be dry, 3 maybe not. If you are going to get wet and its early season, wear more than less. Breathable dry/semi dry gear is best bacause you will sweat your balls off in a wet suit if you are not getting wet.

And, in addition to the previous post, fanny packs are mandatory on most rivers.
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Old 05-14-2009   #4
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5
Well there's a good thought. The nude option would certainly be a money saver right up until admission to the emergency room. And I wonder if anyone's making tie-dyed neoprene tops?
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Old 05-14-2009   #5
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5
Yes, I thought the wet suit would be pretty uncomfortable unless you're wet all the time. I'm a big fan of wool and I'm wondering how those thin t-shirts and long johns would work. They work well for keeping cool and warm (how do it know??). I'm uncertain how well it works if continuously wet though...
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Old 05-14-2009   #6
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5
OK - that's the first of fanny packs. What's the idea there??
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Old 05-14-2009   #7
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at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,345
Shorts with zip-off legs, tank top, sunshirt, sunhat. Maybe some hydroskin in case it gets chilly/wet.
I am a river, babe - I've got plenty of time, I don't know where I'm going, I'm just following the lines..... - "We are water" by Shaye
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Old 05-14-2009   #8
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Little Village, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,350
Waterproof river fashion has changed a lot in recent years, alarming many traditionalists.
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Uh, I'm just gonna go find a cash machine.
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Old 05-14-2009   #9
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 262
Wool socks under booties is a must...haven't had cold feet with that layering schematic yet...

On a cool day on class III's splash pants and top are nice with some synthetic fibers i.e. fleece, capilene, etc. will keep you comfortable.

Neoprene will keep you warm but yes sweaty if not a little damp...I would also suggest going "commando" under the wetsuit as a bunched up bathing suit under a wetsuit is not so comfortable in the crotchel area.

Have rented a drysuit for a Swift Water class this weekend in BV and I can't say enough about how freakin' awesome the Kokatat Gore-Tex drysuits are...breathable enough so that your body stays comfortably dry, and the non-restrictive feeling (compared to neoprene) is so nice on the body, you feel super mobile. Don't have the pennies to afford one of my own yet but it is high on the list.

And staying on the fashionable side of things some neon colored Zinc-Oxide to coat the nose is super stylie...what ever happened to that stuff, I need some!
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Old 05-14-2009   #10
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 262
I answered my own question!!!

It's Zinka, not clothing but all rafters/river runners should be wearing this stuff on their nose/face!

ZINKA - Waterproof Sunblock

Before running big drops, put your war paint on that will even help to avoid skin cancer!

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