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The Giving Season Page 4

Sailors are a fickle group to buy gifts for, as many old salts have their kit of choice and aren’t especially interested in shaking things up. Did I mention that by nature, we’re traditionalists? While some factions among us might be content to hang onto those old, musty-smelling foulies, the good news is that there is plenty of great innovation and bright ideas coming from the industry side of

$$$ Zip-Locked. There are water-resistant bags, and then there are dry bags. Watershed’s Yukon is a dry bag, meaning that provided you close the bag properly, water simply isn’t going to enter. The bag, which is built out of chemically stable polyurethane-coated fabrics, features a zip-lock-like closer system (called a Zip-Dry seal); once closed, a user simply rolls the top of the bag down and affixes the clips, located at the far ends of the zip-lock-closure system, to their receptacles on either side of the bag. Done, and now you can rest assured that your gear will remain dry. The Yukon features two handles and several lash points for shoulder straps, or to tie the bag to a windward bunk or a dink. $129 (other sizes are also available). www.drybags.com

$$$ Eagle Eyes. Having the ability to clearly discern ripples in the water from afar, or to spot a menacing rock in a glare, are boons to the racer and cruiser alike. But combining stellar optics, great sun protection, and stylish good looks is what separates good glasses from the great. Kaenon Polarized’s line of sailing-orientated glasses fit into the later category, and are sure to be a hit with anyone on your shopping list. The glasses are available in a wide variety of colors, optics, and frame styles. If you visit their webpage, be sure to click on their list of sponsored sailing – this is a company that has done their on-the-water homework. From From $169, model depending. www.kaenon.com

$$$ Winter Warmer.When winter temps plummet, few materials are as warm as wool. The trouble, though, is that wool can be scratchy and even allergenic to some people. Arcteryx cures both of these issues with their Gothic Cardigan, which features non-itch Italian wool that’s been laminated onto a soft micro-fleece lining. The jacket sports a high collar (but no hood), making it an ideal layer to be worn under foulies, and two zipped hand-warmer pockets. The jacket’s main zipper has an internal wind flap that’s designed to keep chilling breezes out, and to retain warmth, and the jacket’s stylish good looks make it a versatile piece of gear for any sailor. $225. www.arcteryx.com

$$$ New Cat on the Block. If you follow high-end ocean racing, you’ve heard about Puma’s debut entry in the Volvo Ocean Race, but what you may not know is that Puma went the full mile, designing and building all of the team’s gear, which is available to the general public. The Cruising Jacket, built from two-layer Gore-Tex will keep you dry when things get snotty. The jacket features a high collar and packable hood, and articulated elbows for ease of movement. But this being a Puma product, you can expect a strong cat presence, in this case on the jacket’s back. So, if you’re shopping for a dinghy sailor, rest assured that this jacket has the right urban cred needed to be cool on campus; if you’re shopping for someone who attends college reunions, this could be a ticket to recapturing lost youth. $350. www.pumaoceanracing.com

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