For those who are kayaking for the first time, we need to explain what a spray skirt is before we get into details like – different Spray Skirt types and their advantages and disadvantages.
Spray skirt, which is also known as spray deck, is basically a waterproof cover for a kayak, designed to stop water from sipping in. It has a hole in it so that the kayaker can put it around their waists. It is the spray skirt that makes it possible for kayakers to paddle on whitewater or on seas where the water is unstable and the wind is strong.
Spray skirt should be on the checklist of all kayakers who are planning to paddle on choppy water and the reason is quite obvious – it helps us stay dry while kayaking. Now, if you have not kayaked on cold water, it is almost impossible for you to understand the importance of staying dry while kayaking. The importance of having a dry cockpit can’t be stressed enough.
This is the reason why we need to find a Spray skirt that fits our needs and our budget. Since there are so many different versions of Spray skirts available in different eCommerce websites, selecting the right Spray skirt could be a real struggle. Kayak Manual is here to help in your quest for the best Spray skirt for your next kayaking adventure –
Top 7 Best Kayak Spray Skirts
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So, we have gained enough information about Spray Skirts, now it is time to buy one. Here we have handpicked some of the best Spray Skirts so that you don’t have to waste your precious working hours to figure out the best Spray Skirt for your next kayaking adventure –
Seals Inlander Spray Skirt is going to help you keep your cockpit dry even if the weather goes bonkers. This Spray Skirt is made from nylon and safety slip technology is used to give this Spray Skirt an edge over other similar products available in the market.
Seals Inlander Spray Skirt is extremely durable in nature and it does not weigh too much which is a huge relief for most kayakers. To ensure 100% protection from water, polyurethane coating is used. To ensure that the Spray Skirt stays taut, bungee rim gripping system is included.
- Inclusion of rim gripping system
- Water resistant
- Fast wet exits
- Adjustable Tunnel waist
Seals Coastal Tour Spray Skirt Ver II is best suited for moderate climatic condition. It does what it does best and that is preventing the water from pooling. It is a general purpose spray skirt but that does not mean it offers a lackluster performance by any standard. At the rear fastened an elastic cord that allows kayakers to make required adjustment in the fittings. You can increase or decrease the tightness of the Spray Skirt based on your preferences.
Putting it on does not involved too much complications. In majority of the cases, the default factory setup is just fine for most of the kayakers. Taking it off is also not a rocket science either. No need to put excessive force. Seals Coastal Tour Spray Skirt Ver II seems to have an excellent track record of keeping the water away from the cockpit. Water does not get socked through no matter how many times your kayak gets battered by waves. However, don’t forget to use the suspender otherwise water might find a way to seep through via the tunnel of the skirt.
- Abrasion proof
- Adjustable rip-and-stick sides
- Adjustable neoprene waistband
- Sealed seams
- Incorporation of safety slip technology
Seals Sprayskirts Sneak Nylon Kayak Spray Skirt is ideal for gentle climatic condition as claimed by the manufacturer. On the front, a water-resistant zipper is included that makes it easier for the kayakers to put in on and off without facing any hassle. You can easily access the gears placed inside the boat even when you are paddling if you decide to purchase Seals Sprayskirts Sneak Nylon Kayak Spray Skirt.
Seals Sprayskirts Sneak Nylon Kayak Spray Skirt is great for all recreational kayaks. So, in case, if you are looking for a simple yet durable Kayak Spray Skirt, Seals Sprayskirts Sneak Nylon Kayak Spray Skirt is the best option available for you.
- The products are all made in the USA
- Safety slip technology is used in the manufacturing process
- Removable suspenders
- Adjustable neoprene waistband
- Polyurethane coating
NRS Catalina Sprayskirt’s tunnel and deck are made from urethane-coated 210-denier nylon oxford that adds to its durability. This NRS Catalina Sprayskirt is ideal for recreational kayaks. They can fit seamlessly in kayak cockpits. An adjustable shock is included in this NRS Catalina Sprayskirt. To ensure universal fitting, an adjustable waist bungee is included. Two grab loops are included – one in the rear side of the boat and one in the front side. To stop water from pooling in, an implosion bar is included in the NRS Catalina Sprayskirt kit.
Seals Sprayskirts Shocker Kayak Spray Skirt is basically a neoprene kayak spray skirt and this kayak Spray Skirt is primarily designed for those kayakers who have a thing or two for whitewater kayaking. Seals Sprayskirts Shocker Kayak Spray Skirt is designed to withstand extreme paddling conditions which are quite common in extreme sports. No matter how extreme the conditions are, this Spray Skirt will always stay put thanks to the induction of safety slip or rim grip technology.
To ensure that the cockpit stay dry, form-fitting anatomical tunnel is included in this high performance Seals Sprayskirts Shocker Kayak Spray Skirt.
- Grab loop included
- Sealed, stitched and glued seams
- 3.5mm neoprene deck
- Safety slip technology included
- Sealtex wear guard
Seals Tropical Tour Sprayskirt is best suited for paddling in favorable weather. You can use it on your sea kayak and it will stay put no matter how rough the weather gets. Breathable nylon fabric is used while constructing this Seals Tropical Tour Sprayskirt and the best part is this Kayak Spray Skirt is completely waterproof. Safety slip and sealed seams are included in this Seals Tropical Tour Sprayskirt kit.
- All the accessories of this Seals Tropical Tour Sprayskirt are made in the USA.
- The inclusion of removable suspenders and neoprene waistband add to the comfort.
- Zippered mesh deck pocket is included and it allows easy access to kayaking accessories.
- Extremely comfortable in nature
- Versatile and durable
SEALS Adventurer Spray Skirt is the perfect companion for those paddlers who love to paddle in extreme conditions. However, it has a catch; you might have to struggle initially to get it tuck under the lip of the cockpit of your kayak. But once it gets fitted, it stays put. There is very little chance of it coming off in the middle of the journey. As expected, SEALS Adventurer Spray Skirt is designed for adventure sports and is extremely durable in nature and waterproof too.
- Adjustable suspenders
- Ideal for ocean paddling and flatwater paddling
- Adjustable strap
- Made from coated nylon packcloth
Kayak Spray Skirts Material
Spray skirts are made from a wide range of materials. Nylon and Neoprene are widely used for manufacturing Spray skirts firstly because they are available for cheap and secondly because they make the spray skirts extremely durable. Sometimes, an amalgamation of these two materials is also used, as it increases the flexibility and elasticity of the final product.
Now, allow me expound on these materials a bit so that you can make the better decision. Let’s talk about Nylon first. Spray skirts made from Nylon is ideal for warmer weather because it does not have any kind of thermal insulation and that means; the lower part of your body might start losing heat very fast while paddling on cold water.
Another major problem with Nylon made Spray skirts is that it stops the air from flowing in and out. As expected, poor aeration can make Nylon Spray skirt really uncomfortable to you. To cancel out this problem, most Spray skirt manufacturers are mixing Nylon with some other materials so that the end product provides better aeration. Another major downside of Nylon-Based Spray Skirt is that it does not offer a firm grip on the cockpit; so it would be a bit ill-suited for rough water.
But the biggest advantage of a Nylon Spray skirt is that it will keep your cockpit dry for sure. No matter what the condition is or what the weather is, Nylon-Based Spray Skirt will have your back. It also ensures comfortable paddling by freeing up more space in the cockpit.
Neoprene-based Spray Skirt is ideal for cold weather as this material offers thermal insulation. Neoprene-Based Spray Skirt will keep you dry and the lower part of your body will have all the warmth that it needs to kayak on cold water. Neoprene-Based Spray Skirt also offers a firm grip on the cockpit and thereby making it ideal for paddling in turbulent water.
3. Mixed Materials
As we have already explained, some manufacturers are using a mixer of Neoprene and Nylon to create a new range of Spray Skirts. These new Spray Skirts are gaining currency all over the world because of their numerous advantages.
Design of A Spray Skirt
The purpose of a Spray Skirt is more than just keeping you protected from water while kayaking. Some Spray Skirts also have small pouches where you can keep your gears safe and secured. Straps and drawstrings are included in some Spray Skirts to give you the perfect fitting that you have been looking for long.
Spray Skirts are now available in different shades and designs. Whatever design you select at the end, you need to take into consideration the size of the cockpit first. Of late, half Spray Skirts are a rage in the market because they look smart and are great for kayaking in warm water. Don’t get fooled by their small size because these half Spray Skirts are quite effective when it comes to keeping the water away from the cockpit. They can even protect your legs from the harmful ultraviolet light.
Another version of Spray Skirt is also making a killing in the market is the Extra Large Spray Skirt. This extra large version is ideal for tandem kayaks. It can cover the entire cockpit and it can also keep the water away from the cockpit.
Different Types of Spray Skirts
1. Tandem Kayak Spray Skirt
This Spray Skirt has two pieces that are fastened together to form a single Spray Skirt. Each of the pieces has a grab loop attached to it. Once these two prices are attached together, they can cover the entire cockpit. This is ideal for tandem kayaks that have a single large cockpit for two passengers. However, you need to make sure that you have not purchased a tandem kayak that has two separate cockpits because in that case Tandem Kayak Spray Skirt will not serve any purpose. In that case, you will have to loosen your purse string to purchase two separate spray skirts.
2. Splash Decks Spray Skirt
This type of Spray Skirt does not cover the entire length and breadth of the cockpit and therefore, they cause no such obstruction to the air circulation. Since the air can enter the cockpit easily, it helps the kayakers to keep the body temperate in check.
Kayak Spray Skirt Fitting
There are so many companies manufacturing Kayaks that it makes it really difficult for us to find a Spray Skirt that fits perfectly on the cockpit. Since companies are making experiments with the shapes and sizes of cockpits all the time to give their kayaks a brand new look, it is almost impossible to find a Kayak Spray Skirt that can fit them all. To be honest, a fit-for-all Kayak Spray Skirt does not exist.
How To Put On A Kayak Spray SkirtStep by step Guide on How Wear A Kayak Spray Skirt
But thankfully, Kayak Spray Skirt manufacturers have done the heavy lifting for you. You don’t have to scour the web to find the best fitting Kayak Spray Skirt for you; all you have to do is to know the model name and the brand name of the Kayak and the seller will so the rest. There is absolutely no need to go through an elaborate size charts. You don’t even have to measure the width or height of the Spray Skirt as well. All you have to browse some ecommerce websites and contact the seller via their platform and they will provide you all the details that you will ever need.
However, if you are adamant enough to find one-size-fits-all design Spray Skirt for your Kayak, we have good tiding for you. Nylon tunnels made Spray Skirts are extremely elastic in nature. They can be stretched easily and therefore, can fit any cockpit size.
Different Parts of a Kayak Spray Skirt
Kayak Spray Skirt has three main parts – a rand, a deck and a tunnel. The tunnel part of the Kayak Spray Skirt is worn around the waist of the kayaker, whereas the deck part goes on to cover the cockpit area. Rand is used to fasten the Kayak Spray Skirt to the outer lip of the cockpit so that Spray Skirt can stop the water from entering the cockpit.
Additional Accessories of Kayak Spray Skirt
How to put on a spray skirtThis is how to put on a sprayskirt. We all know this is maybe the hardest skill to master so here are a few tips.
It is always great to have some additional features included in a Kayak Spray Skirt. Kayaking is a physically intensive activity and therefore, it would be great if your Kayak Spray Skirt has these following additional attributes –
Presence of both interior and exterior pockets can come in handy. You can stash items like dried fruits, sunscreen lotions, phone or any other essential gear there. If you want to offer your hand some warmth, you should purchase a Kayak Spray Skirt that has Fleece-lined pockets included.
2. Tensioned Deck Stay
Tensioned Deck Stay chiefly helps Nylon based Kayak Spray Skirt stay firm on its position and thereby stopping the water from entering the cockpit.
3. Shoulder Straps
The purpose of Shoulder Strap is to prevent the water from getting in the base of the tunnel. It helps the tunnel to remain fully extended.
Arthur G. Moore is a veteran paddler. He has over 10 years of whitewater kayaking experience in his kitty. When he was young, he used to love kayaking in rapid III and rapid IV but as time went on, he decided to concentrate mainly on covering long distances on a standard touring kayak. He is currently working as a senior editor for Kayak Manual.