View Full Version : Snorkels question

03-30-2004, 03:11 PM
Going to Hawaii next week and purchased a snorkel set online last year. I was loading the stuff into my suitcase when I decided to put the mouthpiece into my mouth just to get a preview.

Much to my dismay, the mouthpiece was attached to a flexible rubber tube which made the air tube droop rather forlornly. The only snorkels I have ever used in the past were made of rigid plastic and simply stuck out of the water. This one is different. Not to brag or anything, but I've never had to deal with a flaccid breathing tube before and I'm just not sure what I'm supposed to do.


Apparently, it's a "dry" snorkel. I guess that means that I'm not going to have to keep blowing water out of the tube. That's all well and fine but how is the tube to stay erect and out of the water so that I can breathe? Breathing IS a top priority for me. Does the water pressure push it up? It does have a clip on the tube? Am I supposed to clip it to something, perhaps my ear?

Finally, has anyone snorkeled in Maui? Will I need my fins or should I just stick with aquasocks?

03-30-2004, 03:28 PM
Coincidentally, I snorkeled in Maui just last week. :) I'm not sure what determines whether you need fins... nearly everyone we saw was wearing fins. I did appreciate them the time at Kapalua Bay when I was about to get dashed on the rocks due to not paying attention and staring at all the fishies. If you don't want to pack them, you can pick up a cheap pair at the Walmart right near the airport. (It has normal Walmart prices.)

03-30-2004, 03:49 PM
The snorkel is meant to clip onto the strap of your mask. When positioning it, don't forget that when you are standing or sitting, the snorkel should be pointing straight back, not up.

MC Master of Ceremonies
03-30-2004, 03:54 PM
The clip to clip on your mask is attached to the rigid part of the snorkel, the important thing is to clip it to your mask, but you should do that with rigid snorkels anyway (I've got a couple of snorkels just like the one in the picture, you get less leakage through the top than you do with the cheap rigid ones). The snorkel has a resvoir on the bottom too, to collect any water that does get in and there should be a valve on the bottom to empty that resvoir.

If your skin diving you should always wear fins to conserve your energy (and weights too), though I admit I don't always bother.

03-30-2004, 03:56 PM
You clip the snorkel to the strap of your mask. The flexible tube makes for much more pleasurable snorkeling.

As to fins for snorkeling on Maui I go back and forth. I hate toting a lot of stuff with me and when I'm being particularly lazy I skip them and just wear my Tevas. When I know I'm going to be doing a lot of swimming again being lazy I wear the flippers. I bought little shorty kind of flippers last summer, you can get them in Lahina. I find them much better for snorkeling vs the long diver type fins.

When I snorkel at my favorite place (Airport Beach) I just walk north until I don't feel like walking anymore then hop in the ocean and drift back to where I started. No fins necessary.

We will be on Maui this summer as well. Can't wait for: Roy's, Hula Grill, Slack Key Festival, Poke, Ahi, the Rodeo, ferry to Lanai, mmmmmmmmmmm

03-30-2004, 04:10 PM
The other advantage for a flexible snorkel is that the snorkel mouthpiece drops out of the way when I switch to the regulator.

I've never used a dry snorkel; I look forward to your post-trip report.

You definitely want to wear fins when you go snorkeling. The fins are to help move you through the water.

And a wetsuit is also a good idea, even off Maui.

03-31-2004, 04:55 PM
Thanks for all the advice. I will report back how pleased I am with the "100% dry" snorkel.

Ben, is the wet suit reco for bouyancy, for thermal protection, or for both? We don't own any and I'm not sure how cost prohibitive it would be to rent.

03-31-2004, 05:27 PM
Ben, is the wet suit reco for bouyancy, for thermal protection, or for both? We don't own any and I'm not sure how cost prohibitive it would be to rent. I certainly wouldn't want to put words in the mouth of any Doper with "Scuba" in their username, but I'm a diver too and I'll venture my opinion.

The wet suit would be for thermal protection. You won't need any additional bouyancy in the salt water, though of course the wet suit will provide some.

Remember that even in warm ocean water, say 80 degrees, it still leeches a LOT of body heat away from you. After all, there is at least a 16 degree temperature differential between your body temperature and the water temperaure.

Cost? I'm not sure since it's been so long that I've had to rent one. Perhaps $15?

I always wear my wet suit. People tend to laugh at me, but when I dive the Caribbean I use a head cover in addition to my wet suit. I just HATE getting chilled. It detracts from the wonderful enjoyment of the environment.

Definitely wear fins. And as others have said, the flexible snorkle is actually the good kind.

If you get the chance, take the trip to the Molokini crater. I dove there, but I believe closer to shore they have snorkle trips.

Little Cloud
03-31-2004, 06:05 PM
I'm with Algernon. I, too, wear a wetsuit in the Carribean to keep from shivering and the water in Hawaii is considerably cooler. However, that's for diving. You won't chill as fast snorkeling as the surface water is the warmest part. If you do wear a wetsuit for snorkeling I would recommend you also wear a weight belt to counteract the extra bouyancy. Without it your legs tend to stay on top of the water and your kicking is much less effective.

Can I come with you? Please?

03-31-2004, 08:31 PM
Little Cloud, Mr. Pundit might be annoyed but hey, the more the merrier. Can you bychance fit into a 26" suitcase?