I wanted to let you know that because of the comments on this board recently, I took my 2 month old Guillemot down to my usual paddling spot (Snohomish river in the great pacific northwest) and dumped it over a bunch of times after work last night.
I am pretty new to kayaking and haven't learned a roll yet but I'm pretty motivated to now!!! That water is COLD!!! Even with my full wetsuit and booties I was doing the involuntary gasp, I was really shocked. Did manage a reentry several times but need more practice to gain confidence.
I wanted to add my encouragment those who haven't gone swimming in the water they are paddling in to give it a go, It sure was a good wake-up call for me.
I also wanted to thank those of you who continue to press newcomers to improve their skills and do real world practice. Some of us are listening and learning!!