Having been raised at the beaches of southern California
, and until recently living on Kauai
island for several years, and sailing the caribbean
and South Pacific
, we are acquainted with all kinds of currents.
We are also PADI certified divers and we also snorkel a lot from our boats, and from beach entries. Same goes for SCUBA diving
You both are probably correct in your thinking, but you have to have a whole lot of respect for shore entries and the ocean entries. Mother ocean is totally unforgiving, and does not love us.
1. Snorkeling from shore: We look at the ocean conditions, currents, wind
, swells, other people snorkeling who are not finning and watch their drift or if they are laboring to swim into a current. We also heed any Strong Current Warnings that are posted.
2. If all those pass inspection
from shore, we enter the water. Mask and snorkel in place, and carry our fins into about chest deep water. Looking down into the water we then put on our fins and slowly swim out a ways.
3. We then stop and float horizontally and do not fin. We can then look at the bottom and see if we are effected by the set and drift of the current.
If we are moving across the bottom too quickly.....we get out.
4. We also look up from our snorkeling and take bearings from the entry point. We do not want to get so enthralled with the snorkeling, that we wind
up drifting too far off shore. Also, we stay clear of reef passes, where the water coming over the reef will run out of the pass back into the ocean. You are gone bye bye.
Boat entries: ( sailing vessels )
Usually snorkeling, or checking out the mooring
, and the depth
under our keel
I swim a close 360 around the vessel, mask , snorkel and fins.
Also, as mentoned , we trail a fender
tied on to a long line from the stern, down current.
When we enter the water, we check our set and drift. Usually, we can tell immediately if the current is too strong, and we just grab on to that
trailing line and pull ourselves easily to the swim step. Only one of us goes in, the other stands by at the stern of the boat and keeps a close watch. If the swimmer was swept away, the dink is ready to go to the rescue
If at sea, we would not both go into the water too swim or cool down at the same time. Some currents are way to strong to swim against, or the
wind can blow the vessel away and you cannot get back to it.
Shore, beach entry, or entry from a boat ( usually anchored or moored ), we check the currents and conditions before entering.
Many of our drownings on Kauai
, were people swimming alone, and caught in current, rip or long shore, and swept away. They tried to swim into the current, become exhausted, panic and drown.
Those are our thoughts.
The OP mentioned sharks
Sharks. We have snorkeled and dove with sharks in Tahiti
, and in the Coral Sea
. No problem.
However, a BVI Shark story. We all must remember the ocean is the sharks home, they are there.
Many years sailing and snorkeling the BVI we never saw a shark. However, at Norman Island, we had bbq'd steaks of the stern for dinner
the previous night. Two dear friends were sailing with us.
Well, it was time to drop off the next morning and sail back to Road Harbor. As I was getting ready to reave the bridle
free of the mooring
eye, I remembered that we had not emptied the ashes from the bbq.
Not wantng to get smothered and ashes all over the boat, we dumped the bbq coals and ashes off the swim step into the water.
Within a very few seconds, there were four reef sharks, tearing back and forth at great speed in a total frenzy. Their speed and agility were amazing. Point being, those those sharks could smell the blood in the bbq ashes, and figured it was meal time.
Therefore, we learned never to drop ashes from a bbq, with anyone in the water. And that means boats and people in the water next to us. Just passing that incident along as a point of interest and safety