Originally Posted by RyanHostetler
I've definitely thought about the dry pants / top combination, Brenda, I was just worried that water would leak in around my waist. I'm not at all familiar with the "interlocking tunnel" pants. I'm also questioning whether or not my dry top fits me. It seems quite snug and is difficult to get on (perhaps this is the way it's supposed to be). It also needs a new neck gasket.
So theres nothing wrong with any setup that gets you out on the river, and you can stay comfortable in. we tend to develop strong preferences based on our own experiences. you definitely dont HAVE to have a drysuit. especially immediately. we all have our own preferences. As they say, "People have been getting it done with less gear and more fragile boats since the eskimo days...." ...., but we also get to reap the benefits of their experience, to not go through the same trials n tribulations....
in my case, I hate bunched up layers around my midriff cause im already thick. add a spare tires worth of clothing to a spare tire and its hard to breathe, much less be flexible and comfortable on the river. Lean folks will have never experienced that.skinny folks have to layer up to survive....!
Same with latex gaskets.... too loose, and you get wet, too tight and you cut off circulation to your brain.....
(BTW, NRS sells replacement gaskets, or send it to them for repair, or several shops in CO do replacements. in Denver-Confluence prolly can help you.)
& if the top is too tight...it should fit like a slim/relaxed fit ski shell- room for @2 layers if necessary. you could fix it and sell it, if its too small.
So heres the concern with dry pants, and the same applies to a drysuit if the zippers incompletely zipped. (which actually happened to me already once, luckily i got nothing more then wet fleece.)
(and of course this doesnt mean it doesnt work great for most people....its just a possibility...)
IF you swim....and IF a lot of water gets in there, it makes it very hard to swim eventually, as the gasket holds lots of water inside the suit, and make your limbs heavy. no bueno.
theres always stories story of a screw up or lapse in judgement associated with a hard lesson, and thats how we develop these strong opinions and ideas for safer gear. I know there was a kid from my town who flush drowned on the NF Payette...allegedly because he had a duct tape repair on a gasket or on a hole in his suit. which apparently didnt hold during a protracted swim in cold water.(NFP...look it up
!!!!) I hope i am not misrepresenting that story, cause its of course, secondhand.no disrespect intended.
So one easy solution other then in drysuit conditions, is a drytop, with splash pants over hydroskin or fleece. that way youre thermally insulated, but the water leaks out the cuffs. same with a wetsuit. warm and wet....but warm...
so instead of me saying anything else....heres another take from a pretty smart guy. i am feeliing pretty long winded.
Stephen Wright's Favorite Kayaking Gear | Duct Tape Diaries | NRS