the K&N intake comes with the shroud that pretty much seperates the filter element from the rest of the engine compartment. If your going to be getting water that high up, you have other problems to worry about besides the intake. The shroud will keep flung water and mud off of it. The filter is the same height as the the stock one too, so if your going through water that high, either way your going to get water in your intake, stock or not. Also, the K&N filter uses the oil on the cloth gauze, which repels water, making it water resistant. The stock one doesn't. So if anything, water and mud are not threats to the k&N any more than the enclosed airbox filter. Plus, with the K&N, you get the power gain benifits too.