We've had a warm Fall here, but now it's getting pretty chilly. We
may have liquid fresh water well into January. Anyway,
here's my annual hypothermia post - copied from a September 2001
post. Do not be a recipient of a Darwin Award this winter.
"Before venturing out this winter, take a minute to
review some good cold water boating practices. Our friends at the
ACA Sailing Committee have put together a good page on hypothermia
Check it out. Please, always wear your pfd in cold water. I am
astounded by the number of people who fail to do this and end up
drowning after being incapacitated by hypothermia. And, be aware
that the water does not need to be really that cold to kill.
I wear a farmer john type wetsuit when it's cold. I also wear a
neoprene jacket over the suit if I am sailing more than paddling.
Otherwise I wear a good wool or polartech sweater and a spray jacket
over the suit. I always bring dry clothes in a drybag with my
cellphone and a handheld VHF. I wear fingerless neoprene gloves with
gortex outergloves. I wear my pile-lined, buffalo plaid "Mad Bomber"
hat with the flaps up or down depending on conditions. I always wear
my pfd. Everything clashes with everything else, and so when I stop
at a diner to eat in my winter paddling garb, people always move away
from me (I forgot to mention the high tops over neoprene
socks - tres chic!). I realize that my outlandish appearence is a
small price to pay to be around for my young crew (ages 6 [now 10!]
8 [now 12!) and superior officer (cannot divulge age) come summer.
I do remember to doff my hat when I'm hitchiking back to the put-in
on a river float trip. No one picks up a hitchhiker in a mad bomber
hat - flaps up or down.