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I'm loving some of these windy winter kiting days like last Saturday at Alameda. But as soon as I get that first shock of ice cold water down my wetsuit, I start loving it a lot less.
Any suggestions for one of those hood/neck protector thingies, or other accessory that will keep water from going down the suit? I'm already pretty layered up with an impact vest and Hyperflex jacket, so my priority is something that really, really keeps the water out.
How thick is your wetsuit?
Summer I use 2mm, winter it's time to get the 5/3 out. 2mm booties and I'm good to go.
I was at OB for 3 days last weekend. I spent 5h at the beach on Saturday and I was just fine.
Some people wear gloves and hoodie.
I don't need a hoodie but I'm getting a pair of gloves for storm session this winter. Otherwise my hands hurts under the rain...
Kites: 2013 F-One Bandit VI: 12m, 9m and 7m.
Board: 2013 F-One Acid 134x42 & 5'6 Fish.
Harness: Underwave "Imperial" vaccust.
Wetsuit: Underwave Sultan shortleg 4/3.
I wear one of these and love it under my 4/3 or 5/3 wetsuit! (+2mm booties as le noun said)
http://www.usoutdoor.com/xcel/xcel-poly ... rashguard/
That combo could keep me plenty warm for hours out kiting in the winter.
Also, a good fitting wetsuit is key. A loose wetsuit lets in much more water then a tight one and you get cold much sooner.
"A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are built for"
Any wetsuit with a built-in hood is your friend in cold weather. It makes a huge difference for several reasons:
1. No cold water trickling down your neck
2. Keeps your head warm - remember something like 70% of your body's heat is lost through your head
3. Keeps the wind and cold water out of your ears - this is a good way to prevent the bony growth ("surfer's ear") that is accompanied by spending too much time in cold/wet environments.
From Wikipedia: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surfer's_ear
"Irritation from cold wind and water exposure causes the bone surrounding the ear canal to develop lumps of new bony growth which constrict the ear canal. The condition is so named due to its prevalence among cold water surfers. Warm water surfers are also at risk for exostosis due to the evaporative cooling caused by wind and the presence of water in the ear canal."
I never thought much of the hoodies but actually had just gotten one last Saturday morning (because it was so cold) and used it in the afternoon. A bit a weird sensation at first when you get water spray on it and it sounds like rain on a window. The other thing was the drawstring with the plastic bit on it was rather annoying until I tucked it inside the hood. Other than that it kept me really nice and toasty warm and I am now a convert for using it on cold days. Get one that has a "double" seal, meaning one part goes inside the neck opening of the wetsuit while the other then goes over it keeping all the water nicely out (and you warm). Also a 5/3mm wetsuit or drysuit of course to keep warm. I did not have booties as my feet are always warm.
Thanks to all for the suggestions. Great stuff!
My wetsuit is, I believe, 4/3, but I'm not absolutely sure. It doesn't have the thickness listed on the tag, just the "size" (i.e., "Large"), and it's the only wetsuit I've ever owned so I have no basis for comparison. Although a different wetsuit (or drysuit) altogether would probably be ideal, I'm not up for that much of an expense right now.
Buckidge, the Xcel rashguard looks awesome. That's definitely a top contender.
There were some other interesting items mentioned, such as the hoodie with the double seal. If you could provide links to the specific products you recommend, or at least the make and model, it would be greatly appreciated!
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