12

I like a few features on my snorkels. A purge valve on the bottom near the mouthpiece. This allows for much easier purging since you don't have to push the water all the up the snorkel. A splash guard of some kind at the top. This greatly reduces the amount of water that can get in the tube. The ball & cage you mentioned works well. Replacing the ...


11

Here are some things I've noticed in my relatively limited snorkeling experience: Fins with straps are quite annoying. The strap never really holds well, and you already have enough problems being awkward with fins on that you want them to at least be secure. An open toe will allow them to drain when you get out and the vent makes them easier to get on and ...


10

The first thing to understand is that fins are not strictly necessary snorkeling gear; I've often snorkeled without them. Fins compensate for not using hands while swimming. If you have an underwater camera and/or anticipate strong currents, you'll want to use fins in order to help you propel yourself along under water. Even if these don't apply, having fins ...


9

Wet suit thickness is a very personal thing. I for instance dive in a 3mm shorty in 15C and higher and 3mm one piece for temperatures under 15C and above 6C Remember that you can also layer. So I would say a Dry Suit with thick under garment or a 7mm wet suit with a 3mm chicken vest underneath. Some nice thick gloves and hood and if you really cold then ...


8

I haven't been diving/snorkeling in 10 years. But, back then I was looking at the U.S. Virgin Islands because the dive/travel websites and travel books I read told of nice snorkeling beaches on those Islands that were easily accessible and not crowded at all. Back then those islands were overlooked and not crowded. I never made it there. I'm not sure about ...


6

Defogging a dive mask is usually done with a soap solution. You get two effects that help keep moisture from forming on the glass: cleaning and a soap residue. Baby shampoo works for me, is cheaper than specially branded mask defogger, and smells baby fresh to boot. I've used it on my prescription lenses and on sunglasses. I haven't actually used it on ...


5

I keep the snorkel in my mouth during 'duck dives'. When nearing the surface, I look upwards - that makes the snorkel point downwards, and just a small trickle of air can purge it, since the air is 'trapped' inside the downwards-pointing snorkel. Just when surfacing, tip the head, so you are looking downwards again (the timing may take a little practise) - ...


5

Usually the face mask is the important decision when purchasing snorkeling gear. I bought a pair of prescription lenses, for example, that has made all the difference. Once you have the mask, it usually comes with a snorkel, and attaches in some fashion. What you are looking for is something that is comfortable, easy to clear, and easy to attach. The shape ...


5

The prime benefit with a more flexible fin is you get greater efficiency vs a bare foot for a minimal cost in increased resistance when kicking. I've found that to be generally true with split-fins as well because the split makes the "scoop" of the fin more flexible. I've never swam with the really long free-diving and/or monofins but their length/size ...


4

I'm sure someone will give you a nice answer to the general pros and cons to different fins/recommendations, but I just wanted to make a few comments: (1) what are you snorkeling around primarily? You may want a short stubby fin if you are going around corals (to avoid damage) or if you are moving around/through tight rocks crevices (to be more maneuverable. ...


3

Since most high-tech fins are made for scuba diving, you may want to consider wearing small 1.5mm neoprene dive booties with dive fins. This eliminates several issues with: fin straps falling off your heels chafing / blistering around your fins where they rub the skin toes getting compressed in your fin in order to get a snug fit. low selection ...


2

It's a question of the right tool for the job. For diving in temperatures below 14 degrees Celcius, a drysuit is best. When diving below 7 degrees a wetsuit really isn't the right tool for the job and is dangerous as you'll be extremely cold and will suffer on the surface. Even diving a 7mm wetsuit with a shortie over the top still isn't sufficient when ...


2

I'll say full boot (more comfortable, and you don't need to buy booties), open toe (for water and sand to drain), solid (more sturdy against accidental strikes), and on the shorter end of the models. I found length to be specially important for maneuverability when snorkeling near riffs. Plus it's easier to put on/off, and it's not a burden during the whole ...


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