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Old 09-21-2017   #1
 
fishingraft's Avatar
 
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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Need advice on a dry suit/paddle suit for high-intensity work

Hey ya'll,

I need a dry suit or a paddling suit (neoprene neck is OK, preferred) for work. I'm a field biologist and spend a lot of time in CA rivers during Nov-May installing fish weirs and tending nets in neck-deep water. We've tried out the NRS SARS suits and have had terrible experiences (failed within 4-8 weeks) Also have tried out the Kokatat hydrus suits, and the booties have always failed. I'm sure these suits do OK in normal conditions, but we're wading and driving around in them for 10hrs a day. The water is also very silty. Going to up my drysuit/paddling suit game so I can have more dry days than wet days this upcoming field season.

Any recommendations?

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Old 09-21-2017   #2
 
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Steamboat, Colorado
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I would go with a Kokatat Gore-Tex model, GMER/Idol/or their front entry if you want simple, pretty sure they will do a neoprene neck mod for you as well. The quality and customer service is top notch, although repairs/gasket replacement do seem to be more expensive lately. I would think the booties failing is more related to what shoes you wear over them, if you have a full high top/boot like a 5.10 canyoneer I doubt the booties would be an issue.

Have had a GMER for over a decade now, finally going to replace it this off season. I cannot see myself going away from Kokatat but if I did it would be for the Sweet interglactic suit:

https://sweetprotection.com/sp_no/wh...-dry-suit-5820

Not sure they would do a neoprene gasket though and it is very kayak specific. Judging by the profile pic some of that may not be needed for your uses
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Old 09-21-2017   #3
 
Walterville, Oregon
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We always used OS Systems when I worked for ODFW. That was a few years ago so there may be something better now.
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Old 09-21-2017   #4
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wadeinthewater View Post
We always used OS Systems when I worked for ODFW. That was a few years ago so there may be something better now.
Did you find those dependable and rugged? I know nothing about these.
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Old 09-21-2017   #5
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayakfreakus View Post
I would go with a Kokatat Gore-Tex model, GMER/Idol/or their front entry if you want simple, pretty sure they will do a neoprene neck mod for you as well. The quality and customer service is top notch, although repairs/gasket replacement do seem to be more expensive lately. I would think the booties failing is more related to what shoes you wear over them, if you have a full high top/boot like a 5.10 canyoneer I doubt the booties would be an issue.

Have had a GMER for over a decade now, finally going to replace it this off season. I cannot see myself going away from Kokatat but if I did it would be for the Sweet interglactic suit:

https://sweetprotection.com/sp_no/wh...-dry-suit-5820

Not sure they would do a neoprene gasket though and it is very kayak specific. Judging by the profile pic some of that may not be needed for your uses
Thanks for the recommendation. I was leaning towards a GFER with a modified neck gasket. I'd also like the Idol because I could whip the top off during drives between sites, or when just working up fish in shallow water. I always wear wading boots with gravel guards. But may look into those boots you linked to.
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Old 09-21-2017   #6
 
Walterville, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishingraft View Post
Did you find those dependable and rugged? I know nothing about these.
The OS Systems suits were far more rugged and dependable for crawling around a stream than my personal Kokatat. Most of the ODFW research projects used them. Maybe Shappattack will chime in. He is a fisheries field biologist.
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Old 09-21-2017   #7
 
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Meh, I just went with a GFER. The specialty ones are super expensive, and I can't find much for reviews.
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