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Old 12-08-2010, 11:31 PM
 
3 posts, read 5,387 times
Reputation: 11

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Beth wrote: You can get very close to them.

You will have to because visibility sucks in SW Florida.
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Old 02-07-2011, 06:53 PM
 
Location: Lakewood NJ/Murrells Inlet SC/ N. Naples FL/Swainton NJ
3,665 posts, read 5,558,911 times
Reputation: 2939
OK, the water is warming up, I bought what looks like a decent (US Diver) snorkling set at Costco and just ordered a snorkle vest and fin socks online. Hopefully I will be ready to snorkle again soon (have not done so in years, but love the activity). I will review any suggestions in this thead, but welcome any new suggestions about possible spots in SW Florida.
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Old 02-07-2011, 06:59 PM
 
Location: Lakewood NJ/Murrells Inlet SC/ N. Naples FL/Swainton NJ
3,665 posts, read 5,558,911 times
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Found this online:

I have snorkeled in Naples around the the rocks off of Clam Pass lots of Snook even seen a manatee once.
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Old 02-15-2011, 03:51 PM
 
Location: Lakewood NJ/Murrells Inlet SC/ N. Naples FL/Swainton NJ
3,665 posts, read 5,558,911 times
Reputation: 2939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellwood View Post
John Pennekamp State Park in the Keys is a coral reef state park. It is in Key Largo so is at the beginning of the Keys.
That sounds like a destination. I will check it out. Thanks.

According to Google Earth, it would be a little less than a 3 hour drive for me. Sounds good.
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Old 02-15-2011, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Olde Naples
256 posts, read 681,443 times
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Looe Key is another great place to snorkel. The reef is a National Marine Sanctuary. This will tell you about it.

Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary | Big Pine Key & Lower Florida Keys. That's a little farther down the overseas highway. Lots of snorkel tours there.

Beth
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Old 02-16-2011, 01:17 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,498 posts, read 8,927,878 times
Reputation: 5839
tmozer,
I rec'd going to a local SCUBA joint and getting certified. Your interest in snorkeling will be magnified/expanded by an enormous factor when you can dive, imo. While diving is sketchy locally, having that C Card and some good diving experience opens up a whole new world.

Snorkeling is fun, but snorkeling to SCUBA is like a tricycle to a motorcyle...

Not Jacques Cousteau here, but after ~400+ dives, it remains one of most magical things I do, and it is not age restricted for us serious adult aged people.

Not selling anything, but something to consider, as you read like you have those kinds of interests that SCUBA would be aligned with, imo.
My 50Cts...
GL, mD
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Old 02-16-2011, 01:28 PM
 
Location: Lakewood NJ/Murrells Inlet SC/ N. Naples FL/Swainton NJ
3,665 posts, read 5,558,911 times
Reputation: 2939
Quote:
Originally Posted by motordavid View Post
tmozer,
I rec'd going to a local SCUBA joint and getting certified. Your interest in snorkeling will be magnified/expanded by an enormous factor when you can dive, imo. While diving is sketchy locally, having that C Card and some good diving experience opens up a whole new world.

Snorkeling is fun, but snorkeling to SCUBA is like a tricycle to a motorcyle...

Not Jacques Cousteau here, but after ~400+ dives, it remains one of most magical things I do, and it is not age restricted for us serious adult aged people.

Not selling anything, but something to consider, as you read like you have those kinds of interests that SCUBA would be aligned with, imo.
My 50Cts...
GL, mD
Scuba certification and diving trips is on my list of things to do before I die. Snorkeling will warm me up to diving.

Along that line, since the Gulf (and the Atlantic I imagine) is not that warm currrently, and since being in the water for a couple hours even when it is in the mid 70's will chill you down, I am thinking about shopping for a wet suit of some kind. One I can use now for snorkeling and later if I get into diving. Any suggestions?
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Old 02-16-2011, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,498 posts, read 8,927,878 times
Reputation: 5839
Yes, any suit you get can be used snorkeling, diving, whatever the outdoor/underwater activity...
2 ways to buy, imo: local shops (not that many in SW FLA), or on line, but 'fit' varies from mfg'er to mfg'er; sort of like buying shoes or any clothes, on line. Prices tend to be better on line, as is selection.

Suits are tossed into a few categories of 'style', but basically 'shorty' and 'full length', and for very cold water, the 'farmer john pants & top', but academic, imo.

Shorties are easy on, but leave legs bare from lower thigh down. Full length offers more protection, and a fully encapsulated feeling. The 'mm' or millimeter thickness is also slightly variable by manufacturer, but a "2 mm" or "3 mm" suit will give you considerable comfort time in most of FL's waters, and will work well for diving even in multiple dives, where one's skin temps are eroded.

"Skins" are also pretty good for warmer water diving: easy on, very flexible, cheap...though as water temps get into the 70s, skins get cool as they have little insulating value.

'Booties' are not comfortable for me, and I just use 'beach slippers/surf shoes' when using strapped flippers; in warmer waters or casual dives I actually prefer my pull on heeled fins for feel.

A cheap neoprene head hood, while not fashionable, lol!, does wonders for keep head heat loss down. Gloves are very thin, and really for slight protection, but not necessary, imo.

Most sites offer some reasonable fitting guides and return policies. Suit should be 'snug', but not constricting and easy to put on, as in long back zipper, etc.

Even a 1.5 mil suit, makes any water activity more tolerable, in non-summer months. Remember, 80 degree water, (nice!) is still 17 degs less than your body temp, so that 70 degrees chews away at us, over time.

The only slight downside to a suit or shorty, is that is provides a touch of positive buoyancy, so snorkeling is easy on the surface, but a bit more difficult when you want to kick up, and go down to see something at 10-30 feet below. Most "skins"/non-neoprene, are close to neutral buoyancy.
Weight belts counteract that poz buoyancy tendency when scuba diving...


Some Links:
wetsuit guide, your interest is for water temps 60ish & warmer:
WATER TEMPERATURE CHART*-*360Guide

A couple sites I have bought wetsuits and SCUBA gear from, but no dawg in the fight:
Scuba Diving Wet Suits, Warm - Cold Water Scuba Wetsuits at Scuba.com

Wetsuits: SCUBA Wetsuits | Triathlon Wetsuits | Surfing Wetsuits

Big brand names are ok, but so are 'private label' brands, in my experience.
For beginning snorkelers/divers, an econo suit is worth it, as why put big dough into
gear you may not use much. 50-100 dives later, one figures out what stuff works
and what doesn't last.
GL, mD
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Old 02-16-2011, 02:23 PM
 
Location: Lakewood NJ/Murrells Inlet SC/ N. Naples FL/Swainton NJ
3,665 posts, read 5,558,911 times
Reputation: 2939
Quote:
Originally Posted by motordavid View Post
Yes, any suit you get can be used snorkeling, diving, whatever the outdoor/underwater activity...
2 ways to buy, imo: local shops (not that many in SW FLA), or on line, but 'fit' varies from mfg'er to mfg'er; sort of like buying shoes or any clothes, on line. Prices tend to be better on line, as is selection.

Suits are tossed into a few categories of 'style', but basically 'shorty' and 'full length', and for very cold water, the 'farmer john pants & top', but academic, imo.

Shorties are easy on, but leave legs bare from lower thigh down. Full length offers more protection, and a fully encapsulated feeling. The 'mm' or millimeter thickness is also slightly variable by manufacturer, but a "2 mm" or "3 mm" suit will give you considerable comfort time in most of FL's waters, and will work well for diving even in multiple dives, where one's skin temps are eroded.

"Skins" are also pretty good for warmer water diving: easy on, very flexible, cheap...though as water temps get into the 70s, skins get cool as they have little insulating value.

'Booties' are not comfortable for me, and I just use 'beach slippers/surf shoes' when using strapped flippers; in warmer waters or casual dives I actually prefer my pull on heeled fins for feel.

A cheap neoprene head hood, while not fashionable, lol!, does wonders for keep head heat loss down. Gloves are very thin, and really for slight protection, but not necessary, imo.

Most sites offer some reasonable fitting guides and return policies. Suit should be 'snug', but not constricting and easy to put on, as in long back zipper, etc.

Even a 1.5 mil suit, makes any water activity more tolerable, in non-summer months. Remember, 80 degree water, (nice!) is still 17 degs less than your body temp, so that 70 degrees chews away at us, over time.

The only slight downside to a suit or shorty, is that is provides a touch of positive buoyancy, so snorkeling is easy on the surface, but a bit more difficult when you want to kick up, and go down to see something at 10-30 feet below. Most "skins"/non-neoprene, are close to neutral buoyancy.
Weight belts counteract that poz buoyancy tendency when scuba diving...


Some Links:
wetsuit guide, your interest is for water temps 60ish & warmer:
WATER TEMPERATURE CHART*-*360Guide

A couple sites I have bought wetsuits and SCUBA gear from, but no dawg in the fight:
Scuba Diving Wet Suits, Warm - Cold Water Scuba Wetsuits at Scuba.com

Wetsuits: SCUBA Wetsuits | Triathlon Wetsuits | Surfing Wetsuits

Big brand names are ok, but so are 'private label' brands, in my experience.
For beginning snorkelers/divers, an econo suit is worth it, as why put big dough into
gear you may not use much. 50-100 dives later, one figures out what stuff works
and what doesn't last.
GL, mD
Thanks Dude. I will check it all out.
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Old 02-16-2011, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Olde Naples
256 posts, read 681,443 times
Reputation: 103
If you wait till May to snorkel the keys, you won't need a wet suit. Surface water temp will be around 86+. You'll find better deals on snorkel trips as well and less people on the reef. Water is generally clearer too.

I do recommend wearing a t shirt. Helps with sunburn on your back and the occasional jellyfish. There are little places to snorkel all over the keys besides the parks.

Beth
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