How to get out of the boat!

Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:22 PM
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How to get out of the boat!

Could anyone give me some information about snorkeling tours? To date we have only snorkeled from the beach, which we enjoy very much, however, it sounds like we may be missing LOTS by not taking a tour. My biggest fear is getting in & out of these boats....Do you have to climb ladders? walk out? How difficult is it to get back into the boat from the water. Do you need a lot of strength to pull yourself out? If anyone has information on trips that were especially convenient & enjoyable I'd love to hear from you! Particularly in the areas of USVI,Aruba,Bahamas,Mexico. Thank you!
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Old Mar 5th, 2005, 02:41 AM
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It does depend on what kind of tour you take.

Many of them are on catamarans, and the better ones have BIG wide stairs they drop that allow you to walk right in and out of the water in a nearly normal manner. (Put on your fins at the bottom stair and take them off in the water before you get back on.)

Some smaller boats ahve a small boat ladder that everyone climbs down or up.

Some boats you have to jump off the side and then you climb back in on a ladder.

I have been on LOTS of them and seen people of all ages getting in and out of various boats.

One of the easiest is the Fury tours in Cozumel Mexico with the big drop down stairs.

The good reputable tours will ALWAYS have one or more people to help anyone who needs aid.

Some of the very best snorkeling is accessible only from boats, so don't let your worries keep you from going.

That having been said, the whole process does get complicated if the water has surge, so be sure that the tour you are thinking of taking will not go if the water is rough.

In my experience, a general rule of thumb is - the bigger the boat, the easier the access, but the trade-off is a larger group of people.

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Old Mar 5th, 2005, 12:15 PM
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I understand your concern. I love to snorkel but don't like boats. On the boat trips I have taken, it was always easier to just jump off the side of the boat to get into the water. I guess it is more like sliding in from a sitting position. Then you use some sort of steps to get back up - I have never had to use a rope ladder - most of them are the metal ladders. I do not have great upper body strength and I have still always been able to pull myself up high enough on the ladder to get my foot on a rung. Also, the people manning the boat should be ready to assist you right away. If they are not, don't be afraid to ask one of them for help or tell them your concern before you get in and ask that they be on hand to give you a hand.
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Old Mar 5th, 2005, 04:16 PM
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You can jump in or go down the ladder. When you want to get back in the boat climb out on the ladder. Take your fins off before you try to climb up the ladder.
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Old Mar 6th, 2005, 05:44 AM
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I think that I've been through all of the methods described above. I personally don't like jumping off with all of my gear on (I'm not the best swimmer). So, I generally lower my self down a ladder and then put my fins on. Typically I wait for everyone else to hop in first. Since I'm kind of slow, I don't want to hold everyone else up. I also make sure my husband doesn't wander too far away before I get in.
On one trip we didn't have a ladder (in either direction) of any sort. I lowered myself over the edge of the boat. Getting back in was rather challenging. But between pulling myself back up and someone in the boat giving me a hand, I made it in. I should add that this was actually on a fishing trip where we stopped to snorkel along the way.
I was also on one snorkeling trip where we were over a wreck in pretty rough water. This boat had a ladder. When I went to reach for the ladder, a wave hit the boat, and the boat came towards me. I smacked my knee into the boat and ended up with a nice bruise. Since this trip, I've learned to kind of watch the boat as I'm approaching to see how much it's moving before I get too close.
With all this said, I still go on the boat trips! I like being out on the water, you see lots of different things, and you meet new people. I've also found that typically between the guide and the other people on the boat that everyone tries to help each other out. I would say go for it! You'll be fine
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Old Mar 6th, 2005, 07:43 AM
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While on the subject, Sam's club has snorkel kits by Body Glove now for adults and kids. The adult package includes fins, mask, snorkel and carrying bag for $39.99. The snorkel has the splash guard at the top and supposedly closes when you go under water to keep water out - I've never used one like that - we'll see if it works.
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