If you were to take a quick look at the new Gul Saco dry top you could mistake it to be from another well known manufacturer. This is because it has the kind of features and detail you would expect to see in a kayaking dry top from a more well established kayaking gear producer and not from a firm that is relatively new to this part of the market. This is definitely a good thing in terms of its features as it has the elements that paddlers would want. Gul aren’t strangers to the world of watersports but dedicated high end kayaking gear has been missing from there range over the years. Gul started as a wetsuit company and developed the first “steamer” wetsuit back in the early days of surfing in the UK.
The Saco dry top in conjunction with a number of other other new designs is set to change this.
The Palm Zenith Dry top is a midweight whitewater jacket with a comfy GlideSkin neck (no latex)‚ made in XP 2.5-layer fabric. We’ve had the short sleeve version at Unsponsored HQ for some time and it’s our go to summer jacket. The long sleeve version shown landed last week, so we thought we would take a closer look.
As you would expect the long sleeve Zenith Dry top is very similar in both fabric, cut and freedom of movement.
The Palm Zenith is available in a mens and ladies version. The Palm Zenith shown here is the mens version.
The Sweet Protection Sabrosa Dry Top has landed here at Unsponsored HQ. This may well be an exclusive, it’s not even on the Sweet Protection website yet. It would be fair to say that I have been waiting sometime for Sweet to put a short sleeved paddle top into production and it’s finally here.
I think that originally the Sabrosa was not designed to be a full on dry top and was billed as a spray top. However on arrival at Unsponsored HQ it is clear the the Sabrosa is a full on short sleeve dry top. It even states it on the swing tag.
It’s been some time since we last had a dry top from Peak UK at Unsponsored HQ.
This one is Peak UK’s best selling Deluxe dry top.
The Deluxe retails at £225.
You may or may not have noticed that Immersion Research released details of their new designs and updates for 2017 just a few days ago.
What is even better is that if you are based in the UK or Europe you can get hold of some of the new 2017 gear right now, that’s well before the US of A.
To join all the lovely new dry gear Immersion Research also have a new Rival Semi Dry Top.
We had a box of goodies arrive at Unsponsored HQ last week containing lots of gear from Sweet Protection.
One of the first items out of the box was the Sweet Protection Supernova 2016.
We are big fans of Sweet Protection gear at Unsponsored HQ. We have bought a few bits over the last few years!
For 2016 Sweet have updated a number of products with new colours. However the dry gear has had more significant changes.
Natty Cordon takes a look at the new Kokatat Idol drysuit/drytop.
Is it really possible to kill two birds with one stone? Well Kokatat have finally achieved it! Thanks to their innovative waist entry system, the new Kokatat Idol drysuit can be split in half and used as a dry cag for the summer months!
Having faced some fairly intense scepticism, with even my closest friends believing that I would drown, I have gathered a few FAQs which I will now attempt to answer:
What’s the waist entry system all about?
In stark contrast to the traditional front or rear entry drysuits, the Kokatat Idol has a flexible plastic zip which runs around the waist, separating the trousers from the top.
Yak are the kayaking/canoeing side of the Crewsaver company. In the past Yak have catered for the middle to lower end of the market with some fantastic hardwearing kit for centre and club use. Although functional and hardwearing they didn’t have the same appeal as some of the more well known brands. Over the last few months I have been testing a few pieces of Yak gear including the Riwaka dry top, Chinook dry trousers and Hallertau PFD.
Some of the colours used will put some off, there is no denying that the GREEN of the dry tops and PFD takes a little bit of getting used to.
Yak Riwaka Dry Top
The Yak Riwaka in a very loud GREEN has arrived at Unsponsored HQ. Now this is the third bit of gear from Yak that has landed here the HQ in as many weeks and once again Yak have made a really good impression (I need to find out who is designing this stuff!) – here’s why.
I have owned the Immersion Research (IR) short sleeve Comp top for years. It only sees the light of day when it warms up here in the UK. The cag is a short sleeved version of the Comp top and shares all of its features with the exception of the obvious (long sleeves and latex cuff seals). After years of loyal service I fancied a changed. Nothing wrong with the Comp, just wanted something new. Now as it turns out the search for a high specification short sleeved dry or semi-dry top is actually quite a hard one. The number of manufacturers offering such a top as part of their current line up is quite small. So after much searching and considering the few alternatives Immersion Research came to my rescue with the Arch Rival.
I have been using a Sweet Protection Shadrach dry top for the last couple of years when it gets a little warm for a full dry suit. It has served me well has stood up to the test of time. For 2014 Sweet protection have released the new Supernova dry top and thanks to the guys at Sweet I have been able to give one of the new Supernova dry tops in Gunmetal blue a good test for review here.
Now I must start off with the fact that Sweet kit is pretty expensive. The Goretex Pro shell Supernova retails at a huge £399. Now that this is out in the open and out of the way lets consider what you are getting for your hard earned cash.