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Old 10-25-2011   #31
wildh2onriver's Avatar
irvine, California
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,197
Originally Posted by kazak4x4 View Post
My wife recommended the boots for her for Xmas and 4" Silverback double pad for our family Xmas present. I think she is a keeper
Sounds like a keeper to me. Also, those boots look almost identical to the Chota's i bought in 2001--looks like they'll do nicely--plus the price is much better.

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Old 10-25-2011   #32
Bend, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 141
Some of the advice in this thread seems a little sketchy. Muck boots, waders, and drysuits with neoprene neck gaskets but latex wrists and ankles and/or goretex, attached feet all present the risk of filling with water and pulling you under, particularly in a long swim. Accounts of people not drowning with these does not negate the risk. I haven't heard of drownings specifically with these but there are definitely cases of "semi-dry" pants leading to that end- same concept really. there is definitely a difference between falling in class II riffles and getting recirculated in a hole, caught in a strainer or other situations where the integrity of your clothing and your own strength are compromised. I certainly don't think its worth the risk. Muck boots are great for loading/unloading rafts and wearing around dreary camps but they are definitely enough to negate your pfd.

being a rafting passenger is brutally cold business if its chilly out. I bought my wife one of those old-fashioned rubber hot water bottles that is her best friend on cold weather rafting trips. We can put hot water in it morning, noon, and night and it can be applied to cold extremities, core, whatever. A nalgene bottle can be used in the same way but is less flexible and not comfortable in a sleeping bag. definitely the gore-tex booties on a dry suit are a god-send too, just don't pack them too tight or they'll lose effectiveness. Most importantly, my wife is much warmer kayaking (me too I guess) despite being down in the water than she is rafting. The lesson here is to get the cold person moving through rowing, hiking, whatever. It gets cold and people want to ball up but that's counter-productive.

Vaya Con Rios!

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Old 10-25-2011   #33
Randaddy's Avatar
Eastern Slope, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,406
Another thought: sell the semi-dry suit and buy her a proper dry suit with booties. I got my wife a used Stohlquist for $200, washed and revitalized the fabric, replaced the wrist gaskets, and am adding booties. For about $250 total she will be warm and dry next trip.

I agree with MikeG, booties can be dangerous, but they're probably fine on a dry suit with latex gaskets.
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Old 10-25-2011   #34
lhowemt's Avatar
at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,347
Excuse me if someone's said this (I've not read the entire thread), but get her a drysuit with neoprene gaskets. Then wear 2 prs of thick wool socks. WAY more comfy and still waterproof. OS will size it to her neck size. Very nice, comfy, non restrictive, and not bad to get on and off. I have OS, love it, and have had more than my share of swims to put it to the test.
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 10-25-2011   #35
OlyPen, Washington
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 85
I trimmed the neck gasket on my first drysuit and it worked out great.

When I bought the replacement for that drysuit (just plain wore it out overall), the New England Kokatat rep trimmed one ring off for me. That is the official way to make the neck gasket fit better, as someone else pointed out. They're made superscrawny because there is no such thing as making them smaller from a too-big size.

Chota Mukluks are not wide-topped mucking boots. I have a pair of the latter, and there's no comparison in terms of flooding.

Socks can be Merino or other wool. Merino's nice because it's softer and not scratchy. Besides SmartWool, Wigwam's over-the-ankle thin Merino wool socks are great, and they cost less than SmartWool. I like both brands equally well.
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Old 10-25-2011   #36
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Aurora, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 453
I used pringles cans in the wrist gaskets and Folgers coffee cans on the neck. It took a couple of weeks, but it worked. Every time I got home on Sunday, I put the cans in the gaskets until I packed up for the weekend. That fixes the suite, but fleece socks and hot tea are also a must for me. I'm always cold, so I wear fleece socks under the gortex booties and then Neo booties on top of those. Even after a swim my feet are usually warm. A thermos of anything hot in my raft or kayak does wonders too. Oh, and a warm hat or skull cap really does help. If my head is warm, then my feet seem to be warm.

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