Roll with Aire thigh straps but skirt comes loose

I recently installed the Deluxe Aire thigh straps in my Yukon Yak '11 model with the '12 WW spray deck. There were two initial problems which I corrected and one is still outstanding.

  1. When I did a quick hip snap the thigh straps loosened and the sweep roll failed. I tightened the straps to the max and then tied a halft hitch in the strap after it went through the camp lock. This solved the first problem.
  2. The packraft rolls up much slower than my 21" wide sea kayak that I most frequently paddle. To compensate for this I switch from a quick sweep roll to a slow extended paddle roll. This solved the second problem.
  3. The '12 spray skirt pulls off the deck during about 50% of the rolls. Has anyone else experienced this and if so, how did you address it? The first thought that came to mind was to retrofit a conventional spray skirt that fits the cockpit much tighter. Has anyone tried this?

Thanks for your feedback in advance.

Hi Richard,

Thanks for the post, I just came back from an afternoon of rolls and have a couple of similar observations.

I am using the 12 yak and spray deck with the NRS thigh straps.

1.) NRS straps do not loosen which is a definite plus (different buckle set up) on the down side the buckles are metal and crazy heavy!
2.) Exactly my experience, slow roll is the only way, and is actually quite easy.
3.) I have the same problem (I ended up ditching the deck and rolling open boat). I have a spare bib (alpacka) here so I am going to try tighten the elastic and see how that works. Otherwise I was thinking about making myself a custom one. How are you going with the spray skirt issue?

All the best,


I reply to the skirt coming loose… are you using the suspenders on the skirt when rolling? You could be pulling the skirt loose when upside down if your thigh straps are not holding you down far enough to keep your butt from leaving the seat level, thus pulling the skirt loose. Try it without the suspenders.

I am also experiencing a popped deck, not only when rolling but when boofing or trying to punch large holes.

Here is the conundrum; I would not even think about being in the water I’m running with the old deck, that would be an absolute nightmare. Still, I feel like I have a boat capable of class IV/V and a class III deck.

I am going to try longer suspenders. What it really needs is probably more skirt material or an additional horizontal pole that elevates the skirt.

Today I took a dip in the sea for some rolls without the straps on the skirt and am pleased to say that after about 20 -30 rolls the skirt was still in place. On the downside, lots of water pooled around the loose waist. I guess it is now just a case of finding the perfect balance. Thanks for the tip!


I’m glad you found a workable solution. Maybe to keep the water from pooling you can use a small inflatable of some kind under the deck.