I recently decided that my old palm semi dry cag (palm fuse) was moribund and sad as this was, it had served me well over the years. As well as the pretty colours it also kept me warm and dry, even in the colder months and i got a lot of use out of it. The neoprene seal on the fuse does let some water in but that’s to be expected, you still stay warm enough. Eventually some of the stitching came loose around the neck and the matierial seemed to loose its waterproof quallities but i didnt exactly look after the cag… it spent most its time on the floor outside in a wet heap so im sure it would have lasted a bit longer with a bit of tlc.
The question was ‘what cag do i buy next? Unfortunately my student loan doesnt quite accomodate for Geortex Sweet Cags so i was limmited in what i could afford. Personally i thought the Kokatat Stoke was the next best option in terms of quallity of the materials used so i tried one on and was immidiatly impressed. The fit is a little bit funky and feels a bit strange at first as it’s quite short in the body but this makes complete sence as soon as you put your deck on and sit in a boat. You benefit from having less baggy material and the whole thing feels quite sleek and clean. Kokatat make the Stoke out of a material they call Hydrus which is a 3 layer breathable fabric. I have to say that having paddled with this cag a few times now it is considerably lighter than any other cag i have used. The matieral feels soft and comfortable and even on a hot day it doesnt become sticky and humid inside. As with most dry cags today the Stoke also features latex neck and wrist seals, although these do look and feel considerably thicker than the latex seals found on similar cags from Palm & Yak, and they really do keep every drop of water out! you also get a double seal waist with really good velcro power adjuster tabs to get a great tight seal around your waist. Finally you also get a good chest pocket perfect for keeping your car key in.
I could go on but ultimately the Stoke is a great fitting, comfortable dry cag and it keeps you warm and dry and looks pretty cool in either the Leaf/Denim or Tangerine/Denim colour way. A great piece of kit for a reasonable price, the no quibbles manufacture warrantee also providers great piece of mind.
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