Kokatat Gore-Tex Expedition Dry Suit, EXP w/ Hood
Kokatat Gore-Tex Expedition Dry Suit, EXP w/ Hood
Kokatat Expedition dry suit (or Gore-Tex® EXP for short), is Kokatat's best sea kayaking and sailing drysuit. The Kokatat EXP dry suit comes in Men's and Women's styles, and we have separate descriptions for each. This page is about the Men's EXP dry suit.
Basically the men's EXP drysuit is a deluxe version of the Kokatat Gore-Tex® Meridian dry suit (GMER) with some modifications that make it better suited for sea kayaking and sailing, and the EXP comes with a more complete package of dry suit options. Almost all the bells and whistles that are optional features on other dry suits are standard on the Kokatat EXP drysuit. To begin with, the Expedition dry suit has: a front-entry zipper that runs diagonally across the chest of the suit making it easy to get in and out of (as opposed to dry suits with rear entry shoulder zippers that require teamwork to get in and out of without breaking the zipper), an over-skirt for kayakers to keep your sea kayak drier while rolling or paddling in waves, a men's Relief Zipper for speed and convenience when nature calls, Gore-Tex® Dry Socks that make it easier to get in and out of the suit as well as keep your feet warmer and dry, and neoprene ankle cuffs with adjustable "hook & loop" tab closures to keep gravel out of your booties. The EXP also comes standard with: Reflective Tape on the sleeves and hood, left and right Sleeve Pockets, and a well designed Hood. If you wanted everything but the hood, you could order a GMER dry suit with optional Reflective Tape and Sleeve Pockets, but it would cost about the same as the EXP; so one way to look at it is that with the EXP suit you get the hood for free. So even if you don't think you'll use the hood much, since it doesn't cost extra why not have it?
Sail boarders prefer the EXP drysuit because the cover over the entry zipper protects their board from scratches
In addition to the hood and other features that are standard on the EXP but only available as custom options on other drysuits, there are two more reasons why the EXP is the best dry suit for sea kayakers and sailors. On the EXP, the outer wrist cuffs (the neoprene cuffs that fit over the latex wrist gaskets) are adjustable with "hook & loop" closures whereas Meridian dry suits have non-adjustable snug "Punch-Through" neoprene over-cuffs. For river kayaking, the punch-through wrist covers are preferred because they create sort of a double seal, but for sea kayaking and sailing trips, being able to loosen the outer cuffs on the wrists of the EXP makes it more comfortable to wear all day, at camp, etc. Similarly, the neck on the EXP is more comfortable than the Meridian because the Meridian has a snug, Punch-Through non-adjustable neoprene collar around the latex neck gasket whereas the EXP has a hood that serves this purpose without adding a second tight layer around your neck. If dryness in extreme hydraulics is your priority (i.e. river kayaking), then the Punch-Through wrist and neck gasket covers make the Meridian your choice, but for all day comfort while sailing or camping on sea kayaking trips, we highly recommend the EXP instead.
The hood on the EXP is not removable, but as of 2008 it was redesigned so that it extremely comfortable whether you are wearing it or not. When not using it, the hood can be folded up and held out of the way with a "hook & loop" strap that is attached to the back of the hood, or the hood can be tucked under the back of your PFD, or simply let the hood lay down flat like a very wide, low collar. The new hood design is comfortable to wear, stays in place well in wind, turns with your head so it doesn't blind you, and it doesn't hinder your ability to roll your kayak up regardless of whether you are wearing the hood or have it loose around your neck. In fact, wearing the hood helps keep water out of your ears and keeps your head warmer when rolling in cold water. Even if you don't think you'll ever wear it, the only reason not to want the hood is for river kayaking where there may be a risk of getting the hood caught on a branch etc. So for pure river kayak use we recommend the Gore-Tex® Meridian or Idol model dry suits which don't have a hood. Sea kayakers are better off with the Expedition dry suit whether they use the hood or not.
Made of 3.21 oz. nylon 3-layer Gore-Tex® (much tougher than the Gore-Tex® used for rain-gear) with Cordura® seat and knee patches to reinforce heavy wear spots, and metal-tooth, heavy duty zippers (not plastic) waterproof to more than 20 ft.
If needed, we can help you order a custom sized drysuit; contact us if you have questions about the fit.
FREE UPS Ground Shipping (48 US states, Priority Mail AK and HI, $35 postage for Norway, Sweden, Germany, Switzerland, Australia. To place an order from outside the US, call first.)
NO SALES TAX if shipped outside WA state
FREE KA Drysuit Care Kit included with this suit (KA Drysuit Maintenance Guide, Zipper Lube, 303 Protectant gasket lube, and Synthetic Fabric Soap)
Men's Colors: Electric Blue top (blue)/Gray bottom, Tangerine top/Gray bottom (Mango available by special order)
Men's Sizes: S-XXL (size S available by Special Order only - call us)
If needed, we can help you order a custom sized Kokatat drysuit; contact us if you have questions about the fit.Men's Kokatat Drysuit Sizing Table