Sweet Protection Shambala Paddle Shorts
If you think you might end up in cold water this summer, it's always good to have a bit of neoprene on your lower body. The Shambala Shorts from Sweet Protection are both stylish and comfortable for summer paddling of all types. The shorts have a snug-fitting three-quarter length neoprene liner that is integrated with a super light outer shell of wind-resistant nylon. They are easy to pull on, and very warm when (and where) it counts. A relatively high cut on the lower back helps to prevent chafing from back bands. The three-quarter length cut adds a bit of extra warmth over the knees, and is more comfortable to wear in a kayak than standard knee-length board shorts.
In our testing, the Shambala is the most comfortable option for this type of shorts but, unfortunately, they run a bit on the expensive side. For a slightly cheaper option, check out the Immersion Research Courier Guide Shorts. The outer shell is a heavier material that dries more slowly, but they are still a great product. ($97, immersionresearch.com)