Right now, one of the most underrated activities when it comes to recreation on the water is snorkeling. It is not necessary to travel to a location in the tropics to go snorkeling. In fact, if you have the right gear, you can spend time snorkeling is some great locations in the northern latitudes.
However, it doesn’t matter if you are in the Caribbean or Lake Tahoe, you should still aim to have the best snorkel gear you can buy, ready for your underwater explorations. These include excellent fins, a mask, and a kick-ass snorkel.
Selecting The Right Snorkeling Equipment
When you are checking out snorkel gear ratings, make a point of paying special attention to the mask. The mask must fit you well. Otherwise, condensation and fog will come inside of it and prevent you from seeing things clearly. Because of the materials that are used in the manufacture of masks, new ones have a tendency to get foggy.
Tribord Easybreath Snorkeling Mask
- Wide field of view (180 degrees)
- Shatterproof polycarbonate window for extra safety
- Watertight ergonomic design
- Easy to use adjustable elasticated textile strap
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This impressive mask is the original full-face snorkel mask. It’s fashionable, soft, and extremely comfortable. It has wide viewing angles, comes in four standard sizes, and is suitable for most users. The Tribord Easybreath has independent double channels that are used for exhaling and inhaling. The breathing tube uses the full dry-type design and works extremely well for surface snorkeling. The headband is used to maintain the shape and the level of comfort when wearing the gear. If you buy any other full face mask just be aware that it is more then likely a cheap knock off and came after the Tribord was designed and released. Tribord does hold the patent and I would stick with these guys until there was a competitor that introduced a new and improved design concept.
However, that problem is readily solved by scrubbing a small amount of toothpaste onto the inside of the mask. To prevent fogging it is vital that you find a mask that fits correctly.
You should also always use de-fog or some toothpaste on the inside of the mask once you have it at home. Skipping this step will only lead you down the road of frustration whenever you go diving in the future. The last thing you want is to be missing all the action trying to clear your mask of fog when you’re out on the water.
Tip From The Pros: It is not a good idea to inhale to determine whether a not a seal on your face is created by the mask. When you do this, you run the risk of making a bad mask look like it fits your face. Either take your regulator or snorkel with you in order to get equipment that works well together, or buy a good snorkeling kit that includes all the necessary equipment.
Promate Snorkel Scuba Diving Dry Purge Mask Gear Set
- Patented upper valve (100% dry snorkel)
- Adjustable buckle
- Hypoallergenic silicone face skirt
- Snorkel swivel that offers you superior comfort throughout your dive
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The Promate combo set includes the Cobra dry Whistle and the Pro Viewer Purge Mask snorkel. The purge mask is built in to offer an additional channel for breathing air out while keeping the mask waterproof. Additionally, with the routed skirt design, the system will direct the bubbles away from your view.
You can choose from a range of different styles. The mask comes in 4-window, 3-window, and 2-window options to complement any type of face.
The dry snorkel with a signal whistle is uniquely designed. Air can get into the snorkel easily for unobstructed clean breathing. The specially designed cover prevents water from splashing into the snorkel. The patented hinged seal restricts water from entering when the dry snorkel is submerged. Once you surface, the hinged seal will open to let air in.
Snorkels look like very basic equipment. However, part of the process of learning to snorkel is being able to choose the best possible snorkel for your needs. It should not feel like it is pulling on your mouth. Look for comfort. In order to get the snorkel to stay in place, you should not have to bite down hard. Most beginners select the dry option although there are other possibilities including semi-dry and open tube snorkels.
Your final consideration should be your fins. Look for ones that are comfortable. To make sure that you can easily dive down and maneuver to see interesting things below you, the fins you select should feel secure on your feet.
Pay Close Attention To Snorkeling Gear Reviews
In order to be sure that the snorkeling gear you are considering will meet your expectations, look for reviews both online and in print. Once you begin shopping for your gear, you will be led in the right direction when you have access to this information. The best snorkel gear will get great reviews and when shopping online it’s the reviews for each product that will help you make the decision on which gear is best to buy.
U.S. Divers Adult Tucson LX Snorkel/Magellan Purge LX Mask
- Dry-top, submersible system specially made to keep water out of the snorkel
- An ergonomic mouthpiece to offer comfort and reduce jaw fatigue
- A flex section to maximize comfort and improve the fit
- A whistle for alerting a buddy or getting attention when on the surface
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This is an adult mask designed as a one-size-fits-all solution, with a hypoallergenic silicone face skirt that offers the user ultimate comfort. It also comes with a Pro Glide buckle system that enables easy adjustments. The mask has a two-window design, which is great for a wonderful field of view. The tempered glass lens mask has a wide split strap design for ultimate comfort and a perfect fit on your face. The mask is also equipped with a one-handed nose pocket. At the bottom of the nose, pocket is the one-way purge valve, for effortless purging of water and improved comfort.
Keep in mind that when you have chosen the right equipment for snorkeling, it will stay securely on your body and feel great to wear for hours at a time. In order to have a positive experience when you are snorkeling, you must get many different components to work together well.
Throughout the entire swim, you must have good visuals, no leaks, and a high level of comfort when wearing your gear. To get a better fit and a more comfortable experience, consider replacing padded straps for the plastic straps that come with most masks in order to improve the overall fit.
In order to provide you with the power you need while you are in the water, you don’t need your swim fins to be clown shoe sized either. In fact, half-size fins work well for snorkeling because they travel securely and they pack well. They should also be able to generate a sufficient level of force and the majority of the time comes equipped with a quick release strap.
What Makes The Best Snorkel?
Dry snorkels tend to be the best because they work well under most conditions. If a wave catches you, you won’t swallow water when you are wearing one of these. You have more options during your swim because they tend to keep water out of the tubes during your dives.
Cressi Supernova Dry Snorkel
- Dry top Snorkel with a patented valve to completely keep water out
- No need to clear the snorkel when you return to the surface
- A large and easy purge valve system
- Mouthpiece rotates to prevent fatigue on those long dive days
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This is an adult mask designed as a one-size-fits-all solution, with a hypoallergenic silicone face skirt that offers the user ultimate comfort. It also comes with a Pro Glide buckle system that enables easy adjustments. The mask has a two-window design, which is great for a wonderful field of view. The tempered glass lens mask has a wide split strap design for ultimate comfort and a perfect fit on your face. The mask is also equipped with a one-handed nose pocket. At the bottom of the nose, the pocket is the one-way purge valve, for effortless purging of water and improved comfort. These features along with the flexible tube below the keeper point make this mask ideal and super comfortable when diving. Spearfishing and freediving enthusiasts will especially love this snorkel.
During the process of shopping for a snorkel, there are some features that you may wish to consider:
Purge Valves: A purge valve is designed to help you to get rid of any water that enters the snorkel. These valves are one way. That means no water can enter them, but water can exit through them. Some must be activated, but others are more like drains that automatically work. To make sure you don’t breathe in or swallow any water, look for snorkels equipped with a collection reservoir if there is no purge valve.
Flexible Barrels: Nowadays, there are sections that are flexible and are attached to the main barrel at the mouthpiece. When compared to the standard snorkel which is somewhat rigid, this tends to be more comfortable.
Rotation: Some snorkels are equipped with a rotating mouthpiece design. When out on a lengthy swim, this reduces the jaw fatigue level since it moves with you as you maneuver about during your underwater explorations.
It is a personal preference that determines which options you select. Some people prefer to blow out the water from their reservoir after it builds up, while others opt for the purge valve. In order to get the best snorkeling gear for your needs, you must obtain a snorkel that does the job for you.
How Much Will You Pay Today For The Best Snorkeling Gear?
It is surprisingly affordable for beginners to buy a basic set for snorkeling. On Amazon, you can buy a very good set of snorkeling gear at the $60 price point. This type of kit is perfect for people who just want to get an idea of what snorkeling is all about.
Phantom Aquatics Speed Sports Signature Mask-Fin Snorkel Set
- Open Heel snorkeling fin plus an adjustable strap
- Low internal volume silicone mask
- Comfortable fit
- Liquid silicone skirt for watertight sealing
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The Phantom Aquatics snorkel set is an exciting and fun set for snorkeling at any skill level. Swimming enthusiasts will enjoy the unique speed sports fins, which come with an adjustable strap for ensuring a comfortable and secure grip. This will allow you to minimize the energy you expend and maximize your power in your swimming activities.
With its dry snorkel, this kit essentially reduces water entry on the surface and stops wind spray or chop from entering the breathing tube. The silicone two-window mask lets you enjoy the view, while the quickly adjustable buckle is great for simple adjustments.
The set comes with a snorkeling mesh bag, which has a drawstring strap that makes this a very useful boat kit bag.
In general, the price you will pay is dependent upon the equipment that you need to buy. Typically, you can find snorkel prices starting at $25 and increasing from there. Fins are priced similarly. The best snorkel gear and masks that deliver a true comfort fit can top out at $100. However, you can find an extremely good mask for around the $50 mark.