Astral Abba PFD

A women's-specific kapok classic

Astral Abba PFD

Starting out the Grand Canyon adventure. Photo: Kara Hastings

Astral Abba PFD

($129.95, astraldesigns.com)

Review by Charli Kerns

With a woman-specific fit and environmentally friendly design, the Astral Abba PFD demonstrates quality commensurate with the Grand Canyon way of life. It’s rated to 17.4lbs of buoyancy, a full pound more than the minimum USGS requirement for Level 3 certification. That meant I really floated high up when I swam through a rapid on the Colorado at 13,000 CFS. I was thankful for the PFD then. The Abba is made with Kapok, the protective layer around the fruit of the ceiba tree. This natural material is naturally buoyant, light, insulating, and water resistant. The Astral Abba sometimes rode a little high when I was in my kayak, but for rowing it was perfect. This is a great PFD for raft guides and oars-women.

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