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FishFood
03-08-2008, 21:48
Bashing snorkels seem to be a theme around here. Ive read comments ranging from "drop the snorkel after OW" to "snorkels are for noobs"...

This has been bothering me for a while so I decided to make a thread about it. A snorkel is a safety item! Ive seen divers carry an air horn, smb, and signaling mirror, but not have a snorkel. A snorkel is not a noobish item or an item that should simply be discarded after OW class. It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

Sure, it's not always needed. Ill leave mine on shore when Im diving the springs or quarries. However, anytime I do a beach/boat dive, Ive got my snorkel. I feel all these snorkel bashing threads are going to give the many new divers here the impression that "professional divers" do not use snorkels, and that's just not the case. Smart divers do not make fun of being safe.

Oh, and before someone chimes in saying something like "Well, DIR says...", I don't care what DIR says.

jwdizney
03-08-2008, 21:55
Well said, FishFood. i have to agree. we have redundant everything else, how much more trouble to carry a snorkel? I don't have a folding snorkel, but that looks like a good alternative for those who don't want to mess with one dangling from their mask strap. could stick it in a pocket, or tie it off on BCD. besides, snorkeling can be a fun way to swim out/in on shore dives and conserve air....

anxious to see how this thread develops....
:smilie40:

Tom A
03-08-2008, 21:56
always have my snorkel

Firefyter
03-09-2008, 00:00
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

No it's not. It's a convenience item. Pure and simple. I don't care whether you wear one or not, but don't act like it's life and death.

scubacat80
03-09-2008, 00:15
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

No it's not. It's a convenience item. Pure and simple. I don't care whether you wear one or not, but don't act like it's life and death.

FireFyter - Why do you feel this way? While I am used to it by now, probably because of the way I was taught, I am interested to hear the opposing view point.

St.jimmy
03-09-2008, 00:18
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.
Um, how so? my snorkel has only impeded me as of yet, it snags on my long hose, pulls on my mask when I hit the water, and tangles during ditch and don.
now, I see how it can be useful and almost necessary on shore dives, but in the ocean?

Athena2c
03-09-2008, 11:21
I almost never wear mine for boat dives, it just gets in the way. I do believe they can be helpful for shore diving, but even then, when the seas are too rough, they are useless (yes, even the dry snorkels).

FishFood
03-09-2008, 11:50
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

No it's not. It's a convenience item. Pure and simple. I don't care whether you wear one or not, but don't act like it's life and death.

Odd coming from someone who has devoted their life to public safety. Come back after you find yourself in trouble on the surface and can barley keep your head above the water. Come back then and tell me "it's not a safety item". No one ever wants to deal with the small inconvenience of a snorkel untill they find out first hand WHY they need one.

Here are some examples:

I was on a boat dive in the gulf. Seas where border line "Small Craft Advisory". My dive buddy had become extreme sea sick after getting in the water. I jumped in to help him get to the guide line. He was very disoriented and we did a bit of struggling in the rough seas. We were both breahting heavily. He was sucking down his air, but I was using my snorkel.

Sure, you can say "You could have used your air". Yes, however what if this had happened on the way back to the boat? My dive buddy is struggling and I run out of air because I didnt plan on getting into trouble ON THE SURFACE.


Here's another example, my dive buddy does a crappy job watching his air and we end up buddy breathing back to the surface. We are both out of air by the time we get to the boat. Seas are 5 feet and we are trying to get on the ladder. The snorkel not only made is much easier to get back on the boat, but made it much easier to keep calm on the surface.

I could go on and on.

Sure, if sea are flat, leave it on the boat. But if they're no, it's needed.

Personally, I dont care wether you where one or not either, as you have a good amount of diving experience and you can make your own choices. However, for the large quantity of new divers on this board reading all these snorkel bashing posts, their needs to be anothter side to the story. A new diver is more likely panic in rough conditions on the surface. A snorkel will help, period.

NoTime58
03-09-2008, 16:10
Never been on a dive without mine. Some dive operations require a snorkel as part of your gear, (SubTropic, Key West FL. RedSail Sports, Grand Cayman, Pattaya Dive Centre, Pattaya Thailand). I use mine after I enter the water waiting for everyone else in the group......saves my air. Diving in Key West a couple of weeks ago we had to wait on the surface so a diver could change out his BC (air bladder would not deflate). Took @ten minutes to climb back onboard and change out. My wife was using here reg. to breath and sucked @ 500 psi before we descended.

Splitlip
03-09-2008, 17:01
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

No it's not. It's a convenience item. Pure and simple. I don't care whether you wear one or not, but don't act like it's life and death.

Odd coming from someone who has devoted their life to public safety. Come back after you find yourself in trouble on the surface and can barley keep your head above the water. Come back then and tell me "it's not a safety item". No one ever wants to deal with the small inconvenience of a snorkel untill they find out first hand WHY they need one.

Here are some examples:

I was on a boat dive in the gulf. Seas where border line "Small Craft Advisory". My dive buddy had become extreme sea sick after getting in the water. I jumped in to help him get to the guide line. He was very disoriented and we did a bit of struggling in the rough seas. We were both breahting heavily. He was sucking down his air, but I was using my snorkel.

Sure, you can say "You could have used your air". Yes, however what if this had happened on the way back to the boat? My dive buddy is struggling and I run out of air because I didnt plan on getting into trouble ON THE SURFACE.


Here's another example, my dive buddy does a crappy job watching his air and we end up buddy breathing back to the surface. We are both out of air by the time we get to the boat. Seas are 5 feet and we are trying to get on the ladder. The snorkel not only made is much easier to get back on the boat, but made it much easier to keep calm on the surface.

I could go on and on.

Sure, if sea are flat, leave it on the boat. But if they're no, it's needed.

Personally, I dont care wether you where one or not either, as you have a good amount of diving experience and you can make your own choices. However, for the large quantity of new divers on this board reading all these snorkel bashing posts, their needs to be anothter side to the story. A new diver is more likely panic in rough conditions on the surface. A snorkel will help, period.

Boy somebody's panty hose are in a bunch today :).
99% of my diving is drift diving off boats. I see no need for a snorkel and IMO believe it is detrimental in those applications.
It get's tangled on float and granny lines. The current or entry can dislodge the mask seal. In a heightened state of anxiety the mouth piece is often mistaken for a 2nd stage or confused with a BC inflator.
Not to be too critical, but in the scenarios above, you see a need for a snorkel. I don't.
My BC keeps my head above water. I usually swim on my back at the surface. Snorkels have no place around lines. In my experience snorkels are ineffective in rouigh seas.
Just my opinion as I say.

Osprey
03-09-2008, 17:24
I'm not even out of my dive classes yet and I hate my snorkel with a passion. Sure, it drains in a mere moment, and I never have worries about snorting water (dry snorkel), but it gets in the way. Even when snorkeling in the ocean I've been annoyed with the snorkel LOL!!! It's just cumbersome. I'm not saying I'll never need one, but I sure don't like it. As soon as this class is over, investing in one of the foldable ones for my BC pocket

FishFood
03-09-2008, 17:25
Split, your bias will make you see what ever you want :smiley2: :smilie40:

Kokomo
03-09-2008, 18:28
I always wear my snorkel. I don't even realize it's there anymore. It's especially good shore diving because there is usually plenty to see between the shore and the reef and you don't want to be using up your air.

Athena2c
03-09-2008, 19:04
Yes, snorkels are good for surface swims, so you don't use up all your air, but using them so you don't use up air is not the same as needing them for safety. IMO the bigger safety issue would be to make sure you surface with enough air, rather than needing your snorkel.
But, perhaps I am biased too, because I am really annoyed by mine
:smiley2:

scubacat80
03-09-2008, 19:24
Interesting stories. I only dive once or twice a year so I guess I haven't been on enough to find it a “nuisance.” I started with one, it just seems like a part of me now.

Splitlip
03-09-2008, 19:30
Split, your bias will make you see what ever you want :smiley2: :smilie40:

Not bias. My opinions are quite objective. Based on my experience.

I stopped keeping track of my dives in the 1970's at about 200. Don't know exactly how many I have now, but it is a lot.

I have never, ever found a snorkel to be an advantage in scuba while drift diving. Particularly in rough seas. All those negatives I described earlier, I experienced.

whse56
03-09-2008, 19:50
I've gone diving with and without my snorkel. If I think I'm going to be surface swimming for any distance I'll bring and use my snorkel. If I'm boat diving and will be surfacing near the boat I'll leave it behind. Just my way of diving, not a suggestion to anyone.

det4220
03-09-2008, 21:39
Bashing snorkels seem to be a theme around here. Ive read comments ranging from "drop the snorkel after OW" to "snorkels are for noobs"...

This has been bothering me for a while so I decided to make a thread about it. A snorkel is a safety item! Ive seen divers carry an air horn, smb, and signaling mirror, but not have a snorkel. A snorkel is not a noobish item or an item that should simply be discarded after OW class. It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

Sure, it's not always needed. Ill leave mine on shore when Im diving the springs or quarries. However, anytime I do a beach/boat dive, Ive got my snorkel. I feel all these snorkel bashing threads are going to give the many new divers here the impression that "professional divers" do not use snorkels, and that's just not the case. Smart divers do not make fun of being safe.

Oh, and before someone chimes in saying something like "Well, DIR says...", I don't care what DIR says.

1) Who cares what anyone else thinks. If you like a snorkel, wear one. If you don't, don't.
2) It's hard to make the claim that it is a necessary safety item when you don't even wear one on every dive.
3) Professional divers (military, public safety, commercial) don't usually wear a snorkel. The only "professional" divers that usually wear a snorkel are the ones trying to sell snorkels (recreational instructors).

FishFood
03-10-2008, 07:10
Bashing snorkels seem to be a theme around here. Ive read comments ranging from "drop the snorkel after OW" to "snorkels are for noobs"...

This has been bothering me for a while so I decided to make a thread about it. A snorkel is a safety item! Ive seen divers carry an air horn, smb, and signaling mirror, but not have a snorkel. A snorkel is not a noobish item or an item that should simply be discarded after OW class. It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

Sure, it's not always needed. Ill leave mine on shore when Im diving the springs or quarries. However, anytime I do a beach/boat dive, Ive got my snorkel. I feel all these snorkel bashing threads are going to give the many new divers here the impression that "professional divers" do not use snorkels, and that's just not the case. Smart divers do not make fun of being safe.

Oh, and before someone chimes in saying something like "Well, DIR says...", I don't care what DIR says.

1) Who cares what anyone else thinks. If you like a snorkel, wear one. If you don't, don't.
2) It's hard to make the claim that it is a necessary safety item when you don't even wear one on every dive.
3) Professional divers (military, public safety, commercial) don't usually wear a snorkel. The only "professional" divers that usually wear a snorkel are the ones trying to sell snorkels (recreational instructors).

Who cares what anyone else thinks? Obviously everyone here. Why else would anyone come to this board?

Thats hardley true. Every dive is different

Military and commercial divers use surface supplied air, of course they dont use a snorkel.

OTGav
03-10-2008, 08:01
45 minutes on the surface post drift dive waiting for the boat (trouble with anchor). Nice healthy chop, all of us were on snorkles and good job too - 5 minutes without and you'd had a bellyfull of salt water.

I can see them being a pain in kelp, but never had any trouble with mine at all.

Alternative saftey item - if your a baldy, stuff a hat in your BC, sure makes the sun burn less of a problem after 45 mins floating.

emcbride81
03-10-2008, 08:53
I guess I am lucky, so far I have never gotten mine caught on anything, so mine has yet to be a pain. It has been helpful in the ocean as well, in rough seas. The only time I had an issue with it was my fault...I descended with it in my mouth thinking it was my reg...got about 4ft under with it...brilliant move on my part.

Grin
03-10-2008, 08:56
I think it comes down to comfort on the surface, which comes with time on the water, good equipment, and proper set up of wisly chosen equipment. I have no need for a snorkle with my settup, but I remember needing one when I first started diving. When I infate my BC(BP/wing) I float on my back beautifully, and I often flip my mask up on my head, as the boat comes to get me. I had a fold up snorkle in my BC pocket for a year when I first decided to ditch it. I too feared I might need it in a emergency. But once you dive for a year without it attached to your mask you will probably realize it is good for nothing. But that is only if you have found yourself comfortable on the surface. If you struggle to keep your face above water on the surface, it could be due to the way your BC positions you, or a bunch of things. Everyone seems to prefer certain different aspects to the way they rig themselves. I still tweek little things often, after a days diving, to get the next dive easier on me as to the way I want to do it.
If your only fear is getting lost, and needing a snorkle then, you should get a fold up snorkle and stick it in your BC pocket. You will love not having that snorkle on your head.
Comfort level is the entire discussion here. If you need one, you need it, nothing wrong with that! If you carry one for years without ever using it, then it only makes sence to think about ditching it.
I am thinking a proper wing(BC Bladder), and properly placed weight makes a huge difference in how you BC holds you on the surface. And the design of the mfger also. You see many different designs to place bouyancy higher or lower, for what the mfger and the diver think they need. Most new divers get a BC and don't have a clue what they think is correct. What they think is proper for under water and while on the surface. Some people refine and adjust, and some just dive the same, their entire life, as the day they got certified. A poorly settup rig is probbaly very likely to place you directly on your face on the surface. Obviously, if this is you, you would have a hard time wondering how you could survive without a snorkle. But you may set yourself up for a weight/bouyancy distribution for while under water, that makes you happy, and have to live with your surface positon. Who knows! There is no right or wrong. But just because you think you need a snorkle does not mean everyone else needs one for a safety device.

det4220
03-10-2008, 09:07
Who cares what anyone else thinks? Obviously everyone here. Why else would anyone come to this board?

Thats hardley true. Every dive is different

Military and commercial divers use surface supplied air, of course they dont use a snorkel.

That's right, every dive (and diver) is different. Use one if you like, who cares what someone else thinks about you wearing one.

Um...military divers use SCUBA, too. Surface supplied is only required for mixed gas. There are also some guys that use rebreathers.

For commercial divers, the cool pictures of them are while using surface supply, but they also use SCUBA as well, especially now with the homeland security stuff at ports.

SarahBella
03-10-2008, 10:07
The only time I have not worn the snorkel was on my last pool dive at the Y...I used it when I dove the Gulf of Mexico last July-save me from a nasty wave while waiting my turn at the ladder. I use it but I make it a point not to warn others they may want it.

ReefHound
03-10-2008, 11:04
There are situations where a snorkel may be a safety item but there are more situations where in my opinion they are a hazard item. I have seen so many problems caused by snorkels, usually snagging on something or causing a leaky mask. A leaky mask is one of those things that can stress out inexperienced divers and lead to greater problems. And it gets in the way of your inflator hose sometimes.

To avoid drinking salt water in rough seas, face the waves so you know when to breath or not breath. If water is rough you really need to keep your reg in your mouth anyway. It's far more reliable and most of the problems I've seen on exits are by divers who take the reg out of their mouth. If you fall off the ladder back into the water your snorkel will be useless. Manage your air so you have plenty left on the surface.

I only wear a snorkel for classes but carry a folding snorkel in a pocket.

MSilvia
03-10-2008, 13:15
I love my snorkel... when I'm snorkeling. When I scuba dive, I find it creates a lot of problems without really providing me any tangible benefit.

When I swim on the surface, I'm on my back with my head well out of the water. A snorkle doesn't help with that. If I were to swim face-down, I wouldn't see anything anyhow, as vis here is rarely better than 10-15'.

I've done ocean dives in 5' seas, and as ReefHound said, timing your breathing is a perfectly manageable way to avoid drinking seawater. As someone who's been stranded by the boat for hours with a group of 6 other divers, I can honestly say that at no point did it ever seem like our comfort would have been increased by using snorkles. It's a bit hard to judge the sea state on that occasion, but it was sufficiently "not flat" to make three of the floating divers seasick.

While I haven't personally seen much benefit to scuba with a snorkle, I have experienced a number of problems while using them with dive gear. I've inadvertantly grabbed it instead of an inflator, I've gotten it caught in a rat's nest of monofilament fishing line, I've had it flap against my head in a current causing a persistant leaky mask, and it definately interferes with the smooth deployment of a long hose for air sharing.


A snorkel is a safety item! Ive seen divers carry an air horn, smb, and signaling mirror, but not have a snorkel. A snorkel is a safety item. Pure and simple.

To each his own. I find more potential problems with carrying a snorkle than I see potential benefits, so for me it's freediving gear only. I won't argue that for some people and styles of diving, a snorkle might make someone more safe, but to say that the matter is "pure and simple" shows either a disregard for or lack of understanding of the negative impacts on safety a snorkle can introduce to a scuba dive. There are pros and cons, and each diver needs to evaluate for themselves where snorkles (along with most other pieces of gear) fit into their diving.


Smart divers do not make fun of being safe.
Nor do smart divers accept that gear, practices, or advice will keep them safe without applying a healthy dose of critical thinking to the problem.

Firefyter
03-10-2008, 19:07
A snorkel is a safety item! <snip>It is a safety item. Pure and simple.

No it's not. It's a convenience item. Pure and simple. I don't care whether you wear one or not, but don't act like it's life and death.

Odd coming from someone who has devoted their life to public safety. Come back after you find yourself in trouble on the surface and can barley keep your head above the water. Come back then and tell me "it's not a safety item". No one ever wants to deal with the small inconvenience of a snorkel untill they find out first hand WHY they need one.

You're right, I have devoted my life to public safety. Part of that entails debunking poor information like "it's a safety item" or "it's life support!!". The safest thing to do is train and work on your skills. The snorkel is not, I repeat NOT a safety item. Your training should teach you everything you need to know to handle yourself in the situations you describe. You should plan your dive with air consumption in mind. You should face the waves when there's a chance you could take on water. You should keep your reg in your mouth until you get out of the water in those situations. You should swim on your back when possible. My whole point here is that training, practice, and common sense are the real safety items, not some $10 snorkel. A snorkel can be a real convenience at times, but that's all it is, and only at those times. At others, it's a real PITA, if not a safety hazard.

As I said before, I don't care one way or the other if you wear one every time or not at all. Just realize that when you're insisting that a convenience item is a safety item that you're clouding the real issue, which is that of proper training and practice being the real safety items.

I have to wonder how much of a favor you're doing newer divers with this rant.

MicahEW
03-10-2008, 19:25
So both sides have good points. I doo feel that a snorkel is a good good piece of gear to carry its like a knife just because you have it doesnt mean you are gonna use it but when you need it you dont wanna be without it. I got a folding snorkel that I lashed inside of my BC and it is not in the way of anything.

FishFood
03-10-2008, 19:30
As I said before, I don't care one way or the other if you wear one every time or not at all. Just realize that when you're insisting that a convenience item is a safety item that you're clouding the real issue, which is that of proper training and practice being the real safety items.

I have to wonder how much of a favor you're doing newer divers with this rant.

Hardley a rant Sir.

I disagree (partially) with your statements there.

Your training *should* teach you to do with situations, but usually it doesn't. As you said, practice and experience is how you learn to deal with situations. However, new divers don't come out of the box with experience.

Panicy situations that turn serious should NEVER have turned out serious if you step back and take a look at what happened. Inflate your bc, grab the reg that is directly behind you, stop floundering and think, etc. Of course, that usually doesn't happen. A new diver panicing at the surface kicks and bats at the water's surface because of somehting radiculas that happened that makes them stop thinking rationally and start panicing. Flounder around on the surface while properly weighted (or in most new divers case, over weighted) and your head WILL go below the surface. Never seen this happen?

Previous posters mentioned timing your breathing in accordance with the waves. That's great for experienced divers. However, a new diver with little experience in choppy or rough conditions will probably find themselves overwhelmed. Time their breathing? Doubtfull as they will be breathing too hard :smiley29:

If someone wants to think "critically" about something, they must do it from a new divers POV. Which is often an irrational blur. Life threatening or dangerous problems usually dont just all of a sudden happen, they are a string of events.

All Im advocating in this thread is a little thought before jumping on the bandwagon and saying "ditch the snorkel". Sure, calling it a safety item "prue and simple" may be out of line. Ill concede that. However, whatever makes a new diver "comfortable" in the water, expecially during conditions that are a little nerve racking, will quickly become a "saftey item".

I sure would hate to see a manageable situation become a serious problem simply because a new diver took advice from someone on the internet that based their advice on THEIR experience level.

EDIT:

BTW, good dicussion here. Thanks for keeping it civil yall.

ReefHound
03-10-2008, 19:37
Previous posters mentioned timing your breathing in accordance with the waves. That's great for experienced divers. However, a new diver with little experience in choppy or rough conditions will probably find themselves overwhelmed. Time their breathing? Doubtfull as they will be breathing too hard :smiley29:

New divers fresh out of the box shouldn't be in those kind of rough seas in the first place. One of the reasons I don't recommend brand spankin' new divers going out to Flower Gardens. And if they are panicing to the point they cannot inflate their BC and reach behind for their regulator then I doubt they will use their snorkel either. BTW, I think someone breathing too hard to time their breath will have a hard time getting enough volume through that snorkel bore, which will time itself to the waves even if you don't (because when the wave crashes over the top you are either going to get water or no air, depending on type of snorkel).

That said, as a DM I don't go around telling new divers to ditch the snorkel as soon as possible. By the time they recognize on their own that most experienced divers in the real world aren't wearing one and ask why I figure they are ready to hear the reasons why.

Clanggedin
03-10-2008, 21:11
I don't use my snorkel ever.. Maybe it's because my dives are primarily close to the shore in small lakes and ponds where waves and swimming out a bit aren't really a factor.

Zyxistal
03-11-2008, 08:29
So both sides have good points. I doo feel that a snorkel is a good good piece of gear to carry its like a knife just because you have it doesnt mean you are gonna use it but when you need it you dont wanna be without it. I got a folding snorkel that I lashed inside of my BC and it is not in the way of anything.


Same here, I keep a folding snorkel in my BC pocket.

cmburch
03-12-2008, 09:58
I always use a snorkel when SCUBA and free diving. I have been using a snorkel since I was a kid. There is a lot to look at in the Pacific Ocean. Some of my biggest ling cods have been underneath me in less than 25 feet of water when I was kicking on the surface. I normally put my Reg back in my mouth before swimming down to shoot it. I do not know if it is a safety factor in my case. It just allows me to look down from the surface without having to turn my head to breath or to loose sight of whatever I am hunting, reduces my chance of swallowing saltwater, and conserves my tank air while on the surface. If I did not have anything to look at, swam only in calm seas, or was able to swim on my back in areas without sea grass, kelp, rocks and other obstacles; I may not wear one. When I swim around Oahu or the Chesapeake Bay, I normally just use my swim goggles and no fins. I never had any problems with snorkels on entries. I have had kelp pull on my snorkel, but never where it pulled my mask off or caused a leak. I have the snorkel in my mouth at all times (under water and on surface) when free diving also, except when talking. I guess if I was under for a long time and surfaced with my hands full while freediving I may spit out the snorkel to suck in air faster without having to clear the snorkel, but this is not common. Sometimes when free diving I surface holding my catch, I like to look upwards at the sun's rays piercing the kelp. I may spit my snorkel out and exhale as I am surfacing to watch the bubbles rising through the opening in the kelp, then I break the surface of the water holding my catch and breath in the fresh air. It feels good/glorious. I am not necessarily concerned about what someone else may or may not be doing in the world at this moment unless it is someone near me having problems. I also when free diving swim through breaking waves with the snorkel in my mouth, but can just as easily not have it in my mouth. For me to free dive deeper than 30 feet, I have to calm myself down and work my way down with shorter dives. If I am swallowing saltwater or being tossed around in rough seas this is hard for me to do. My friends have no problems. They can swim 1/4 mile along the cliffs then turn upside down and free dive to 35-40 feet. 90% of my dives are in kelp forests and rocky sea grass areas. Abalone season opens April 1 in California. I am looking forward to it.

MSilvia
03-12-2008, 10:32
If someone isn't thinking clearly enough to time their breathing, what make you think they'll be thinking clearly enough to clear a snorkle each time a wave breaks overhead, and not just exacerbate their panic by either not providing air or giving them repeated opportunities to inhale a tube full of sea water?

Even if they do clear it properly, if they are really breathing hard, the additional dead air space in a snorkle combined with the restricted air flow it provides is hardly going to help calm them or keep them safe. I suspect it's more likely a paniced diver would spit it out and try to breath without it.

Grizbear98
03-12-2008, 10:41
I actually used my snorkel in Belize. I never thought I would need it, until I ran out of air in surf. I'm glad I have a semi-dry, it kept the water out for the most part until the boat came

CompuDude
03-12-2008, 13:21
If it makes you happy to use a snorkel, by all means use it.

If you don't see a huge need for it (or dive with a long hose), then get rid of it, or switch to a pocket snorkel.

I love my snorkel. For snorkeling.

If you're having trouble keeping your head above water in rough seas, and you feel your life is at risk, I'd submit it may be better to drop some weights so you float higher, than wear a snorkel at all times, whether it's needed or not. While it can SOMETIMES be a piece of safety equipment, I agree with the view and more often, it has the potential for more mischief than good.

Again, in certain circumstances, however, certain types of diving (hunting, surfacing swims over clear reefs, etc.) snorkels can add a lot of benefits. But for what I suspect is the majority of diving, I see more problems than benefits.

DollFin
03-14-2008, 14:05
Personally, I dont care whether you where one or not either, as you have a good amount of diving experience and you can make your own choices. However, for the large quantity of new divers on this board reading all these snorkel bashing posts, their needs to be another side to the story. A new diver is more likely panic in rough conditions on the surface. A snorkel will help, period.


Speaking as a new diver who HAS been in rough surface conditions (albeit I did not panic), my snorkel has come in handy a couple of times. First, when I was one of the first to splash and had to wait for everyone else before we could descend, it came in handy as I was able to conserve air until everyone was ready. 2nd, while on a shallow (25') dive, I discovered the hard way that I was underweighted. I had to fight to stay down and finally it just got to be too much. I popped to the surface a few hundred feet from the boat and had to fight a moderate surface current to get back, which got me pretty winded and would probably had blown through my remaining air before I reached the boat without the snorkel. I know I only have 10 dives to my credit, but so far, the snorkel has not been any inconvenience and has prooven useful more than once.