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Swimming in a drytop and bib pants with attached socks, as opposed to a drysuit? Do you sink?
 

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I use a drytop with NRS Black rock drypants and it works pretty smooth. Little leakage and lots of buoyancy from the air trapped inside. I wear them with the drytop's inner tunnel layered under the top the of the pants and then the drytop's outer tunnel cinched tight over both. You might not be able to do that.

I tested out in lake before using in the river. You might want to do the same.
 

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I do the same as Eklars and I also wear Rocky goretex socks when it gets real cold. No issues.
 

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I'm not a huge fan of drypants....no matter what you have on top....I witnessed my wife's get full up to the knees with a similar dry top/dry pant combo during a swim that lasted about 45 seconds....scared the friggen shit out of me.

Read the "account of a long swim" thread.........it can happen and I wouldn't want dry pants/bibs on when it does.......
 

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Per Goodtimes comments, I should probably add that I haven't actually had a wet exit in combat using my drypants. I've swam some turbulent stuff on purpose to prove to myself that it was good to go but that's not really hard evidence.
 

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http://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/f11/account-of-long-swim-28147-3.html#post166457

All I can think of is something along the lines of fishermen drowning in waders. Unless you're staying in Class II, I wouldn't consider it. Pants could get easily dislodged from a seal with one good beat down with a rock. The above example, as mentioned before, would be an example why I wouldn't recommend boating whitewater in such.
 

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I used drypants with a drytop for a few years and took a few swims. The drypants had latex ankle gaskets. I definitely did not stay dry when I swam, but never had any problems with the pants filling up with water. I would say I got more of a strong trickle of water into the pants, rather than water pouring in. My ass was always completely soaked at the end of the day even if I stayed in my boat. That is the reason I switched to a full drysuit.

I have heard tales of fishermen dying because they fell down in the water and their waders filled up with water, and they could not stand up again. However, I have never heard of this happening with drypants that have a tight fitting waist, maybe it has though.

I never took a really long swim, or got really beat down with drypants. I suppose it is possible for them to fill up with water under these circumstances. However, you are never going to "sink". The water in the drypants is no heavier than the rest of the water, and you will still have a PFD floating you. But you will get really heavy and have a hard time swimming, or lifting yourself out of the water.

I don't think you should be too worried about a drypant/drytop combo, there are many experienced class V boaters that use them all the time. although a full drysuit is always better.
 

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http://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/f11/account-of-long-swim-28147-3.html#post166457

All I can think of is something along the lines of fishermen drowning in waders. Unless you're staying in Class II, I wouldn't consider it. Pants could get easily dislodged from a seal with one good beat down with a rock. The above example, as mentioned before, would be an example why I wouldn't recommend boating whitewater in such.
If we are talking bib drypants designed to seal with a compatible drytop I think you have almost nothing to worry about. I searched the AW Accident Database in the detailed descriptions and conclusions for the terms "dry pants" and "drypants" - no results turned up. I know many people who use this set-up. When sealed up properly it is nearly dry, only letting in a few drops of water.

Non-bib drypants are quite different as they don't form a seal with the dry-top.

Both drysuits and drysuit/drypant combos can be cut by rocks and let in water.
 

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Drypants could get pulled down (I never said anything about a hole) easier in a beatdown, and I did lapse in noticing he was talking about bibs. I was thinking pants, and bibs would be much better. Still, I wouldn't go there, not unless I was staying out of any significant whitewater. It's just not worth it to me. I don't want to get the shit scared out of me/want to quit boating/the shit beat out of me/feel like I almost drowned/cry while boating/drown/etc. The only rationalization that bibs/jacket are OK is that they are cheaper, and that the risk is not high. but really, the risk of drowning is not high (statistically), so why wear a pfd (sarcasm)? So each of us have to decide how far we go to reduce risk, and I wouldn't recommend pants, even bibs, to a friend if they were planning a purchase. Especially if they are boating bigger water where swims are more common/harder/brutal/painful/dangerous.
 

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Drypants could get pulled down (I never said anything about a hole) easier in a beatdown, and I did lapse in noticing he was talking about bibs. I was thinking pants, and bibs would be much better. Still, I wouldn't go there, not unless I was staying out of any significant whitewater. It's just not worth it to me. I don't want to get the shit scared out of me/want to quit boating/the shit beat out of me/feel like I almost drowned/cry while boating/drown/etc. The only rationalization that bibs/jacket are OK is that they are cheaper, and that the risk is not high. but really, the risk of drowning is not high (statistically), so why wear a pfd (sarcasm)? So each of us have to decide how far we go to reduce risk, and I wouldn't recommend pants, even bibs, to a friend if they were planning a purchase. Especially if they are boating bigger water where swims are more common/harder/brutal/painful/dangerous.
I was trying to be polite in my first response, perhaps I was too polite. You are fear mongering since you don't have a factual basis for your fears. I realize you were being sarcastic but there are sadly thousands of cases where people drowned without PFD's every year - it is a well documented fact. I didn't want to respond to this post with only my personal observations (that Dry bibs work just fine and i've seen bad swims with people wearing them) - so I did the search of AW's accident database. Not one result. If your fears were founded there would at least be reports of close calls and probably deaths. There aren't. Futher the product liability of making them if there were deaths linked to them would be huge in our sue happy society. Paddling comapnies don't have the cash to fight these kind of legal battles - they would pull the product.

Also there are more benefits to the top/pants combo than price differential - which isn't that big. You can wear the drytop separately. You can pair it with neoprene shorts or splash pants. If you wear the pants less frequently you will need to replace them less frequently, whereas you might wear out and replace the drytop before the pants show much wear. You could start out with cheaper bibs and upgrade to gore-tex, a relief zipper and goretex socks later.

On a side note I think this argument is a sad reflection of where our society is in large. People taking viewpoint's that the facts don't support , and even when presented with clear evidence, they don't even blink, just continue being sure they are right. Frankly it makes me sad. Laura your post makes it sound like fear is controlling your decision making process. Usually you are clear and cogent, here you need to reevaluate. Or finds some facts to share with the group that support your views so we can all learn.
 

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Oh come on, get off your high horse and give it a rest. We all express our opinions, and that is mine. Of course this shit is based in fear! DUH! Ultimately, why do we buy safety gear, take rescue courses, and practice practice practice? Is it because of statistics? Is it because someone told us to? No, I think it is based on fear. I don't want to watch a friend die, I don't want to die, I don't want a friend to get hurt or me to get hurt. Those aren't logical internal arguments, unless they are based on ego-driven desired to be a hero, or you've got some ability to completely override the most basic of brain functions. Most of the time fear is the foundation for safety training/gear/whatever. Now instead of just disagreeing, which I attempted to do without saying anything towards you, other than disagree, you've talked shit to me and that's just bullshit. So what if you have a different opinion? There's about 6 billion opinions on this planet, and which one is right? The recent "long swim" post is scary shit. Too many people don't take things seriously enough. Big fucking deal if I take them too seriously in your opinion. Go cry yourself a river if your so sad about what I say. Get yourself a mix and match outfit for Class II, maybe lower level III's, fine. Any more than that, I'll recommend to my friends a full suit.
 

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wow,you guys going at each other over this[?],thought I was argumentative.Well Raftus it is interesting you checked AW and there were no incidents,good. I wore the set up in question Mtn. Surf drypants w/neoprene waistband and velcro ankle cuffs with a drytop with tunnel.It worked fine 99% of the time including a gazillion self rescues ducky surfing,but once the legs filled with water on a swim in solid semi continuous IV,the swim wasn't that bad but trying to pull yourself out on some boulder in a micro eddy was.IN A LONGER SWIM IT COULD HAVE BEEN DISASTEROUS.I don't think the others i was with even had a clue it was a problem,i never said anything was just embarrassed i was screwing up.Most of the time they just leak a little like Claytonius said,i still use it sometimes but cinch up good and it is always in the back of my mind when i swim.Having built in booties on something that might leak is moronic.
 

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JUST FOR THE SAKE OF ARGUING ; No a big water swim is not more "brutal" or "painful" as a mank swim,but it might be longer and scarier.
 

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On a side note I think this argument is a sad reflection of where our society is in large. People taking viewpoint's that the facts don't support , and even when presented with clear evidence, they don't even blink, just continue being sure they are right. Frankly it makes me sad. Laura your post makes it sound like fear is controlling your decision making process. Usually you are clear and cogent, here you need to reevaluate. Or finds some facts to share with the group that support your views so we can all learn.
Are we talking about dry pants or the death penalty???

That might be a bit over the top. I agree with Laura on the issue, I'm not willing to take the risk, I'll wear 'em when I raft easy shit but not when there's potential for a protracted swim (definitely don't wear them when I kayak).

I have witnessed (as stated above) dry pants that were used properly fill up with water to the point that I would be uncomfortable if it became a rescue situation.

Everyone has their own opinion.....whether fact or supported by intensive study.....personally I'd rather NOT see a bunch of statistics that cause retailers to pull them from the shelves.
 

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I think the biggest reason for choosing a drysuit over the drytop/pant combo is the warmth factor. Before I got a full drysuit I was constantly wet and cold while kayaking. Hypothermia has led to many many more deaths than drypants filling up with water. It is so awesome to get out of the water, peel off your drysuit and just throw your normal clothes on over your fleece, with no soggy ass, love it.

I have heard many people recount gnarly swims and say "my drysuit saved my life" because it kept them warm and alert and able to self rescue. So whether you want to get a drysuit because it keeps you dry or whether you want to get one because you are afraid of your pants filling up with water, it doesn't really matter.

But...I still have a pair of drypants and I will still use them now and then, and many experienced boaters will continue to use them on difficult whitewater, because statistically the chances of them drowning you are so low.
 

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Man, oh man. This has been good. Good insights as well, thanks. I have been quarelling with this idea since I got the pants this summer (Kokatat Bibs w/ socks paired w/ IR drytop), and I have not had the, um, opportunity to really put it to the test. The way I have been layering it is: thermal, bib, skirt in the bib tunnel, then drytop. Then waterwings for the scariest of class VIII. In light of the "Long Swim Account," I figured I'd run this question by a friendly audience. Anyhow, I should have said "impede in one's swimming ability" as opposed to "sink," I appologize. Raftus and Claytonius, your science in compelling. Goodtimes, I think dude in "Long Swim" would agree with the aprehension toward statistical reductionism. I think one day I will pop for a drysuit, but in the mean time, some cardio may be a safe bet.
 

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I think one day I will pop for a drysuit, but in the mean time, some cardio may be a safe bet.
You should see the look you get when you go to a swimming pool in full paddling gear. It's the best way to get comfortable swimming in it, and great cardio - but people look at you like you must be seriously developmentally challenged.
 

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Of course this shit is based in fear! .... Most of the time fear is the foundation for safety training/gear/whatever.
I always thought the point of safety training was to try take the fear out of the equation, separate the emotion and learn the best way to try to save your buddies life away from real danger. Then in the heat of the moment the fear doesn't control you and lead you into poor decisions. You know what to do becuase you calmy and rationally prepared for the situations you hoped never to face, but always knew you might.

you've talked shit to me and that's just bullshit. So what if you have a different opinion? There's about 6 billion opinions on this planet, and which one is right?
I am calling you out, no question. The class II assertion, the no benefit other than price, both of these are patently false. That's not a matter of opinion. Your posts are usually based in reason, if one of our resident "special people" had made the post I wouldn't have bothered responding to it.

The recent "long swim" post is scary shit.
I agree that post is scary. I've swum class V and that shit is scary, but for the last couple of years I had a mental calm in those places - because of the rescue training and the mental preparation. Yeah the adrenaline is still flowing and the heart racing, but the fear no longer rules me. I think most kayakers find this place earlier on than rafters (or quit kayaking), when they learn to wait for a roll, not to panic just 'cause they didn't hit that first roll. Get a breath, try again, hang in there.

Too many people don't take things seriously enough. Big fucking deal if I take them too seriously in your opinion. Go cry yourself a river if your so sad about what I say. Get yourself a mix and match outfit for Class II, maybe lower level III's, fine. Any more than that, I'll recommend to my friends a full suit.
I don't think you are taking things too seriously - I think you are approaching them without intellectual rigor. The number of class V boaters using the combo and the complete and utter lack of accident reports linked to it speak clearly. Frankly I didn't expect this to be the case, I expected that there would have been incidents reported to AW and likely some deaths. The lack thereof is fairly astounding. Again I invite anyone to find contrary information, I am basing my opinion on the best facts I can find, if those change my opinion will follow.

I wish I could cry myself a river - and then go boating on it. That would rock.

The right mix and match can be good to go for Class V depending on air and water temps. You recommend whatever you feel comfortable with. For places like Idaho and Montana a drysuit is a great choice, in AK it's practically mandatory - but I knew a lot of guides there who used (and still use) bibs and drytops with great results. In Colorado there are a lot of days where it is overkill and the mix and match gives you a lot more options.
 

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I wore the set up in question Mtn. Surf drypants w/neoprene waistband and velcro ankle cuffs with a drytop with tunnel.It worked fine 99% of the time including a gazillion self rescues ducky surfing,but once the legs filled with water on a swim in solid semi continuous IV,the swim wasn't that bad but trying to pull yourself out on some boulder in a micro eddy was.IN A LONGER SWIM IT COULD HAVE BEEN DISASTEROUS.Having built in booties on something that might leak is moronic.
This is a great point. Velcro ankle cuffs let in water. Neoprene waist bands on dry pants (instead of bibs with a tunnel) let in water. If you want drypants you have to get the bib style (with the fold together tunnel thing) with either latex gaskets or socks. Otherwise your pants can fill on occasion.

I can definitely hear the argument between booties and no booties. No socks mean you can open the leg gasket and drain water - but only if you can get your leg above water and pointed downward. Not likely during a swim, but nice on shore or a rock. The socks keep your feet warmer and more comfortable when you have dry feet - which if you seal up right is most of the time. But if you do get water in them you have to take off both the drytop and the bibs to dump out the water - a total PIA.
 

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I'm not a huge fan of drypants....no matter what you have on top....I witnessed my wife's get full up to the knees with a similar dry top/dry pant combo during a swim that lasted about 45 seconds....scared the friggen shit out of me.
Was you wife wearing bib dry pants with the tunnel thing folded properly into the drytop (like in the PDF below) and then the neoprene waistband of the drytop cinched down tight over it? Do her ankle gaskets fit properly or does she have latex or gore-tex socks?

Kokatat Bib Folding Instructions (PDF)
 
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