How to put a Dry Top on Correctly
A common thing people struggle with when getting into kayaking is donning their long sleeve paddle top. This can be especially true when you buy a full winter dry top. First thing to get right is the basic size of the cag. For most people this will be the same as any other piece of clothing you buy, so if you normally wear a medium jumper chances are that you’re going to need a medium dry top as well.
- When putting your dry top on always start with the arms. Get both arms in and sort out the latex wrist seals, making sure that the latex is laying flat against your skin. If you can pull the latex up your arm an inch or so this will help prevent water flushing up the seal.
- Once you have your arms in put the body on and work the cag down to your head. When you get to the neck gasket don’t just pull the latex seal down over your head. Instead put your fingers in the seal and stretch it out and over your head. If the cag is new then the seals will be tight, some cases very tight! With time the latex will stretch and become easier to wear, put on and take off. If its still too tight then you can trim the latex down.
- Once you have your head in sort out the rest of your dry top. Pull the body tube down and make sure the inner seal is also pulled all the way down. Nearly all white water dry tops have a double waist system designed to keep the water out and keep you warm and dry. And that’s it, put your deck and PFD on and go paddling.
- To getting out of your dry top just following these steps in reverse. First pull your waist tubes up as high as you can, under your arm pits is great, then pop you’re head out. Slide your fingers into the latex neck seal, pull out and up, trying to ease the neck seal gently off over your head.
- When the dry top is off your head pull the arms off one at a time. Pull the cag inside out to reveal the latex seal, with your free hand push your fingers inside the seal and ease the latex off.
- Don’t rip the latex seals off when you get in and out of the dry top, the seal are only stitched and glued into the top, if you stress this joint your dry top will leak.
- Yes you can cut latex seals down to make them more comfortable, but it’s always wise to wear your cag a few time first to see if they stretch and become comfortable. If you chop them down straight away they may still stretch with time and may let excess water in!
- After wearing your cag always wash it out in fresh water drip dry and store in a dry cool place out of direct sunlight