Loading... Please wait...

Subscribe to Wiggy's Newsletter » Receive updates about new products, specials, and learn about insulation technology

Having trouble receiving our newsletter? Resubscribe Here.

what to wear under foul weather gear

Posted by


While checking the number of views of my video about burning the sleeping bags I noted the large number of videos listed for people blue water sailing. So, I started viewing them based on my own experience as a blue water sailor.

First, I was pleasantly surprised to see how many people have taken the time to follow their dream of sailing into the sunset. For those of you who have done this, you know the feeling of freedom once you untie from the dock and raise the sails.

That said the one flaw that I have seen repeatedly is what is worn under foul weather gear once they hit even light heavy weather. When you are sailing you are always going to be wet. Therefore, in my opinion you should be wearing when necessary under garments that is underwear under the foul weather gear that is oblivious to being wet. Fishnet underwear I believe must be worn to establish the first space between your skin and the next layer. The next layer should be the second layer mesh garment. This second layer further creates more space from the third layer.

The third layer should NOT EVER be any form of knit garment, knit garments tend to be form fitting and will compress the second layer against the fishnets compromising the space that existed. Therefore, a lose fitting woven fabric so that will complement the first two layers by keeping the space they have created.

When you have the spacing between the garments air can move away from you easily to keep you cool. Also, the lack of knit fabrics over your body means you can move more easily. Being on a boat in the lightest of heavy weather means you must be able to move as easily as possible. Of course, at this point the garments you are wearing under the foul weather gear I recommend my liner vest and/or the liner jacket. Neither is capable of absorbing moisture or retaining it but it will get wet, but these garments will also move easily over the other garments you are wearing and will keep you warm from the cold ocean water that you will be exposed too regardless how good your foul weather gear is supposed to be.

One of the rules I learned from Gerry Cunningham’s booklet “How to Keep Warm” was the necessity to have space between layers that will keep you more comfortable in weather that requires layers of clothing. And when sailing you do wear layers.

I noted the number of sailors who were putting their knitted clothing out on the deck when they deck to dry once they hit warm clear weather. The problem is the air over the ocean has lots of moisture in it, so nothing really dries. I experienced this living on my boat in the sunny Bahamas.

What I did learn is that my sleeping bags did not retain any of the sea air moisture. ALL the other live a board were using inexpensive cotton lined bags that could not be stored because they were so big, and they were always damp. That was the impetus for me to get into the sleeping bag business. When my vests and jackets get wet, they do dry just hanging in the cabin.

I did see a guy on one boat making an Atlantic passage washing socks, something that was a surprise to me since I cannot ever remember wearing them even when I went ashore in a year and a half. So, if you need socks the Lamilite socks would be a better choice versus the wool I assume they were wearing.

The other thing I noticed was the lack of people who would wear sea harnesses. Those sailing the roaring 40’s do when ever on deck, but I was a cautious sailor and even sailing clear smooth oceans doesn’t matter to me safety first was my motto.

Recently I had a visitor picking up some items and he told me he was taking ownership of a 43-foot trimaran. It was in Connecticut and he was moving the boat to St. Petersburg, Fl. He invited me to join him but alas I had to say no. but I gave him two items I have keep since I sold the boat, I had in 1976, I think. My bosons chair and my sea harness. I also advised him to stay on the west side of the Gulf Stream as he sailed south since it was running south. I also gave him the book about the Gulf Stream so he could learn about it. He was supposed to call me when he arrived in St. Pete, and I have yet to hear from him. Maybe he went into the inside passage. Takes longer.

All of the information about what a sailor should wear also applies to land lubbers.

By the way as of this writing there have been 700 views of the burning sleeping bag video, more than any previous video I have made in this short amount of time. Vote for me to get an academy award.

Wiggy's Signature

Our Locations  +  Contact

Corporate Office & Factory

To place an order, please contact our corporate office & factory at:

Wiggy’s Inc.
PO Box 2124
Grand Junction, CO 81502
+1 (866) 411-6465 f:  (970) 241•5921 e:  

Retail Stores


2482 Industrial Blvd  •  Grand Junction, CO
(970) 241-6465


8225 Old Seward Hwy, Ste A  •  Anchorage, AK
(907) 336-1330

When it comes to extreme cold weather gear, Wiggy's has you covered.

Check out all our products from sleeping bags & shelters to footwear & clothing. Our uniquely developed continuous filament fiber called Lamilite insulation is what sets Wiggy brand insulated products apart. What is Lamilite and why does it perform better than all other forms of insulation? Click here to keep reading & find out more »

© Wiggy’s Inc. All Rights Reserved. Website design by Monument Graphics & Communications // Mobile Site