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So this year I was given the opportunity to get back into Yak Adventure Paddling Equipment.
Over the years the Yak range has always come across as very intermediary and recreational based. in 2014 Yak had a new relaunch with things moving within the Survitec group a lot more focus was given to really developing and upgrading the Yak range to bring it in line with the rest of the industry.
I first saw the new range last year and was very impressed, the team have worked hard to change their brand image to a company who can provide top end equipment for paddlesports. I can safely say they have really done the job bringing new light to an established brand and pushing it on in terms of features and functionality.
The latest line up of Yak Equipment is bright, colourful, functional, comfortable and very usable.
Just before I headed to Europe in September I was delighted to receive a box of goodies from Yak, a company I first met 13 years ago when they first offered me a selection of samples as a local lad living next to the factory in Gosport.
The first Item out of the box was the Yak Vanguard Dry Suit.
This suit comes nicely packaged enclosed with a fleece undersuit and lycra over-socks to protect your latex socks.
What Yak say….
What I Say…..
So I put this suit through its paces on a recent trip to Europe, travelling through France, Switzerland, Austria and Italy stopping at Sickline over an action packed 3 weeks.
As always I picked up a large size at 6”3 I know I’m usually at the top end height wise for most large suits but I’m not wide enough to warrant the XL size. The Vanguard suit is a slightly smaller fit to Peak or Palm especially with the metal zip, the hips of the vanguard is also a little narrow but once on provides a lovely fit but for sure its worth trying on first.
I am personally using the Large size which to start felt a little short but now I don’t notice.
The cut allows great movement and flexibility without fabric bulking or getting in the way. this is helped by the internal braces supporting the lower half of the suit when walking, Other brands with neo waist do tend to slip and bunch when walking.
The Latex seals on the wrist and neck are both a good size not too tight and still comfy enough no cutting needed, the socks are probably suitable on the Large suit for upto about UK12 max at a UK11 they are a good fit and very easy in and out of a boot
Latex wrists and neck – comfy and dry
Neo over cone to protect latex neck and provide extra dry barrier – no velcro for easy donning and removing.
Latex socks – something I’d had mixed feelings about over the years but now having used them I find them super, no bunching and really easy in and out of boots unlike some fabric socks.
twin waist – comfy twin waist with grip to stop it riding up
Brass Zip – super dry and industry standard for immersion suits. personally I like the flexibility of a plastic zip but this zip has caused me no problems and remained dry so I cant complain.
Relief Zip – personally I wouldn’t own a suit without a relief zip its probably as important as a PFD on long days on the water!
So I’ve been know to be a bit of a fashion icon and for sure this suit is no different matching my eyes and…… anyway!
This is where I love the suit, as many of you know I love colour and the Vanguard is available in a lovely aqua blue which just so happens to match the rest of my kit. The lime green styling on cuffs really set the suit off and give it a great shape and look.
For 2016 I have seen a sample of Red top grey pants for those more reserved paddlers.
Having taken the technology from sister company Crewsaver I genuinely feel I could hop in the Atlantic, float to America and still get out warm and dry.
The TX20K 3 layer fabric is the bomb its heavy duty and very dry. the suit incorporates a windstopper within the membrane this makes the suit very warm even in the worst conditions I’m really looking forward to wearing this on the coldest days of the year knowing I’m going to be toasty warm.
In warmer conditions I feel this suit could almost be too warm for sure it doesn’t have the breathability of GoreTex but it also doesn’t have that pricetag anyways that’s not usually anything we need to worry about with cold water this suit is a fantastic addition to the range.
I’m really happy with this suit its comfy and dry, the cut is good and the colour is perfect. I will certainly be taking this suit on every adventure in the future!
If you looking for a fantastic suit, durable and warm definitely try the Vanguard on for size, its a fantastic price for a full package which is going to keep you dry!
– Almost forgot
The free undersuit is cosy and warm whether worn inside the drysuit or in the van when driving its a neat piece of kit and amazing that its included with the drysuit.
The Lycra socks are designed to help protect the latex socks, personally I haven’t used these as I love how easy I can put my boots on now with no bulk.