Top 10 - Gear for Cold Weather Sailing

Our staff picks for the top 10 pieces of sailing gear you should consider for cold weather sailing.

The arrival of cold weather does not need to signal the end of your sailing season. In fact, for many dinghy and small boat sailors, there are many great training and racing opportunities in the fall and winter months. The key to making the most of these days on the water is having the right selection of gear. The team at West Coast Sailing has selected their top 10 list of recommended sailing clothing and accessories for sailors looking to fully enjoy the fall and winter season.


#1 - Rooster Pro Aquafleece Top

The Rooster Pro Aquafleece has been referred to by many as the 'ultimate top layer for all conditions' and we tend to agree! This innovative top blends the warmth of fleece with a waterproof outer and taped seams to offer a warm thermal top that offers great cold and wet weather protection. An ideal top to be worn over a wetsuit for keeping your core warm.

$135.00. Available in Black or Blue in Junior to Adult XXXL sizes. Shop Now


#2 - Zhik Hydrophobic Fleece Top

For slightly warmer days or as part of a layering system, the Hydrophobic Fleece Top from Zhik is made from a hydrophobic (water repellant) spandex fleece to provide warmth, flexibility, and comfort. This fleece top is so comfortable you’ll look for any excuse to wear it! We recommend it under a spray top or heavier thermal top or as a lightweight top layer with your hikers.

$89.99. Available in Gray in Junior to Adult XXL sizes. Shop Now


#3 - Zhik Superwarm X Skiff Suit

Zhik Superwarm is the ultimate wetsuit material for dinghy sailors. This latest version of the popular skiff suit style wetsuit combines 3mm super stretchy neoprene with hydrophobic and microfleece fabrics to wick moisture and keep you comfortable. A favorite of dinghy sailors!

$299.00. Available in Adult Men’s and Women’s size. Shop Now


#4 - SEA Winter Waist Lock Hikers

For those looking for a cold weather version of their favorite hikers, the SEA Winter Waist Locks are for you! These are a full length, waist lock style (no suspenders) hiking pad with sewn on batten and reinforced seat and knee. Great overall warmth and durability at an affordable price.

$189.00. Available in Adult XS - XXL sizes. Shop Now


#5 - Gill Pro Drysuit

When the weather calls for the complete waterproof protection of a drysuit, the Gill Pro Drysuit has you covered. Designed specifically for sailing, this one piece suit is made from a robust 4 layer waterproof fabric with integrated booties, soft wrist and neck seals, and a full length front zipper for easy on and off. This is our top drysuit for winter sailing and durable enough for the most active boats and sailors. Wear over your base and mid layers for a complete solution.

$550.00. Available in Junior and Adult XS - XXL sizes. Shop Now


#6 - Rooster Aqua ProGlove

This cold weather sailing glove utilizes Rooster’s AquaFleece fabric to provide warmth, eliminate wind chill, and ensure great grip. The full length design protects your hands but is nimble enough to provide full dexterity and use of your hands while sailing.

$47.96. Available in Adult XS-XL sizes. Shop Now


#7 - Gill Three Season Glove

The Three Season Glove from Gill is another popular cold weather sailing glove, intended to keep your hands warm in all but the most extreme conditions. Features a 1.5mm neoprene fabric with the same palm construction as found on the popular Gill Championship gloves.

$39.95. Available in Adult XS-XXL sizes. Shop Now


#8 - Rooster SuperTherm Beanie

A warm hat is a must for cold weather sailing. Our top pick is the Rooster SuperTherm, which is a unique take on the classic beanie. Rather than wool or fleece, this beanie is made from a super soft neoprene so it has tons of thermal protection but is quick trying and stretchy.

$24.95. Available in Adult S/M and L/XL sizes. Shop Now


#9 - Rooster AquaFleece Neck Gaiter

Like the SuperTherm Beanie, the Rooster AquaFleece neck gaiter is a unique and highly functional piece of sailing kit. It can be worn as a neck gaiter, a beanie or a balaclava and uses fabric similar to the Rooster AquaFleece tops to provide warmth and protection.

$19.95. Available in Adult Universal size. Shop Now


#10 - Gill Waterproof Socks

Add cold weather capabilities to your regular dinghy sailing boots with a pair of Waterproof Socks from Gill. These socks offer complete waterproof protection but are thin enough (and design) to be worn with existing boots and sailing footwear. A staff favorite!

$40.00. Available in US Men’s Shoe Sizes 3-12. Shop Now


This guide was created by the team at West Coast Sailing and originally appeared in the Winter 2020 issue of Laser Sailor magazine. 


*Prices subject to change. See product page for up to date information.

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