What conditions? Posted by: Jaybabina on Nov-29-12 3:35 PM (EST)
You really didn't say what conditions you're paddling in and the likelihood of a capsize or a wet exit. Can you roll?
Celia was right on the money. I've been with paddlers who capsized in 40 degree water with a farmer john and drytop and in no time they were shaking. I always hear these stories of people in light weight wet suits on surf boards all day long and I can only say, I don't know how they do it or it's a lot more aerobic than it looks.
A wet suit will prevent cold shock but anything heavy enough to give you long term protection will be miserable to paddle in. I'm a ex-scuba diver and my cold water dives were less than an hour and then you get out of the wetsuit and into dry clothes in a warm car.
If the waters you paddle in are fairly tame, you could get away with a wetsuit to get to shore but you'll have to immediately change into dry clothes (plenty) for the walk back and some heat packs just in case.
Look up cold shock. It can stop you from breathing. Look it up. It's very serious.
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