Keeping the Inside of Your W Kayak Cockpit Dry in the Surf

You’re planning to take your W kayak on a fishing or paddling trip in the ocean, and you may be asking yourself what’s going to happen if you have to launch it in big surf, and in such case how to protect yourself from getting wet.
Indeed, if you’re launching in big surf some spray might get the inside of your W kayak wet, and even splash you. This is why all 2008 W Kayak models come outfitted with a preparation for a cockpit cover:
You can use any waterproof fabric or plastic sheet to cover the front part of your W kayak cockpit and thus prevent spray from getting in. Once you’re past the breakers you can easily remove the cover, fold or roll it, and store it in the cockpit or on top of the hulls

This picture shows the cover protecting almost the entire cockpit, leaving some place for you to sit in the back, which is where you want to be when launching in big surf:

cockpit cover for fishing kayak

This picture shows the cockpit cover protecting just the front part of the cockpit. This is a preferable when you’re positioned in the middle of the cockpit:

cockpit cover for fishing kayak - half open

Normally, even without a cockpit cover spray shouldn’t be a problem at all since if some spray gets in the water will be drained from the saddle to the bottom of the hulls, and you won’t have to sit on a wet surface.

If you’ve had some bad encounters with big breakers while not using a cockpit cover and there’s too much water in the bottom of the hulls for you to feel comfortable with you can easily drain it using a small bucket or a kayak bilge pump. Then you can dry the hulls completely with a sponge.

Unlike SOT kayaks, the structure of the W kayak enables you to clearly see the bottom of the hulls, and therefore water can’t be there without you perceiving it.

Similarly, when you’re going paddling in fast streams and you want to keep dry you may find the cockpit cover to be useful – without it getting you entrapped in your boat like a traditional kayak spray skirt might.

The W kayak cockpit cover is also useful in case the weather changes suddenly and you get caught in heavy rain, and it offers protection against cold wind.


7 thoughts on “Keeping the Inside of Your W Kayak Cockpit Dry in the Surf

  1. I must admit it sounds like a sensible solution, but did you really have to mention the danger of getting entrapped in a traditional kayak because of the spray skirt (again)?… The traditional tight spray skirt is important not just to protect the paddler from spray but mainly to make his kayak waterproof when he rolls it.

  2. I like it because it’s cheap, and kayak spray skirts can cost a lot. It’s also a multipurpose solution, which is always a good thing.

  3. I don’t think the wavewalk cover is comparable to a SIK spray skirt. These are two different things for different boats and different uses.
    Moshiko

  4. I live in SE Fla where I store my WW behind the house (we live on the water). Anyone know a source for a cover to fit the entire cockpit? I need to keep water out during storage.

  5. Dexter,
    Practically any plastic sheet or waterproof fabric or tarp would do the job.
    You could even use a thick plastic table cloth for this purpose.
    Alternatively, you can simply turn the boat over, and have its cockpit opening face downward.
    Yoav

  6. Even Tyvek would do as a waterproof cover.
    Paul

  7. In my opinion, turning the kayak over while keeping some room for air to get inside is the best way to store it, because if you don’t let the air circulate the humidity could condense, and eventually you could get mold growing in your yak.
    FW

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