Paddling tips, tricks, news and gear reviews from an Unsponsored point of view

Day: 3 November 2015

University of Limerick Kayak Club

The University of Limerick Kayak Club in Ireland is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.

University of Limerick Kayak Club

The club are looking to get in contact with as many former members as possible.

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Cold Weather Paddling Gear

We’ve just about hit that time of the year in the UK when it gets darker earlier and earlier, the weather has begun to turn and the water is that little bit colder. It’s a great time to start to look at your cold weather paddling gear and assess whether it is going to be up to the job.

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Being cold is not just uncomfortable it can also be life threatening. Having the right gear for the right conditions is key at any time of the year but the margin for error during the colder seasons is much tighter.

A good dry top/trouser combo or dry suit. Keeping dry inside makes keeping warm that much easier. Even some of the two piece systems (dry top and dry trousers) available are getting close to being as good as a dry suit. Price is sometimes much better as is the flexibility of the system.

Solid footwear. Wet river banks and slippery rocks are not a great combination if you have dodgy footwear. A good pair of river shoes or boots are worth there weight in gold. Currently using Five Ten Water Tennies or the new Astral Rassler. Footwear with a good sole will also help insulate your feet from the cold ground.

Good socks. Conventional socks only really work if you have a dry suit with built in dry socks. I tend to wear ski socks when I have my drysuit on. If you don’t have a dry suit there are alternatives that will work when wet. You could wear a pair of neoprene boots but I have found that although they are great for keeping your feet warm the ones I have used have never had the greatest amount of grip. I much prefer using a combination of a good set of footwear (see above) and a thin neoprene sock. Various manufacturers make thin 3 and 4mm thick neoprene socks that can help keep your feet warm even when wet.

Base layers. I love merino kit – it’s warm when wet and doesn’t smell! But any good, thin base layer will do the job. Colder = more layers. Polartec fleece also works really wet in cold/wet conditions.

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Pozo Azul – Costa Rica

Pozo Azul - Costa Rica

First day in Costa Rica was pretty stout, hitting the classic waterfall run in the Sarapiqui Valley.

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