One foot waves
I have been out in similar conditions on a camping trip to Blake Island last September while paddling the Tempest. He biggest difference on that trip, aside from a kayak with a soft chine and better secondary stability was the wave direction. Rather than broadside to the boat, they were at a 45 degree angle for our heading. Far different hitting waves in that direction.
Given I was paddling the Shadow, I opted to use the Werner Cypress the entire trip. The Greenland paddle does require a bit of practice to master and figured I had enough to handle without adding anything else into the mix.
The drysuit and base layers I was wearing did their job. While not completely submerged or in the water for any length of time, I was in the roughly 48 degree water. I stayed dry and as soon as I was paddling, I was warm. However, the drysuit needs to be upgraded. The biggest issue is the lack of booties. Even with neoprene shoes and waterproof socks, my feet don’t stay as warm as they could. That’s both a comfort and safety concern.
The other article of clothing I need for cold/inclement weather paddles is a storm cag – a one-piece combination jacket and spray skirt cover designed to be worn over existing clothing and PFD in inclement weather on or off the water. It would have been ideal on the first leg at lunch!
I picked up 2 thermoses to have hot food and drinks on cold paddles but I will need to get a third to carry hot water. This isn’t for drinking. It’s a safety precaution. Even dressed for immersion, with the right base layers, getting cold is possible – especially hands and feet. Carry hot water provides a quick way to warm extremities until more can be heated.