Wetsuit for Snail Shell

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Wetsuit for Snail Shell

Postby PaulSiegel86 » Oct 25, 2011 9:05 pm

What is y'alls recommendations for wetsuits, particularly for snail shell cave? I have a 3mm farmer john from NRS, and was planning on wearing that and my lost creek coveralls with a poly pro shirt for good measure. Should that be enough? I'm not particularly cold natured, but I've never been on a trip like this before.

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Paul
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Re: Wetsuit for Snail Shell

Postby Cody JW » Oct 25, 2011 9:08 pm

It might depend on if you are using a flotation device or not, many do.
It only takes one person to surrender a dog to a kill shelter ,but it takes many to rescue it.
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Re: Wetsuit for Snail Shell

Postby PaulSiegel86 » Oct 25, 2011 9:14 pm

Thanks, Cody. Yes, I am planning on using a PFD.
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Re: Wetsuit for Snail Shell

Postby Cody JW » Oct 25, 2011 9:26 pm

I went in the main entrance a few years ago to the intersection of Grand Canal without a wetsuit or flotation device, some swimming and some wading . I had double layer poly pro and a cave suit.I had bottles in my pack that provided some flotation.We were just doing a quick trip on the way down from Indy. Some got cold and turned around early, we were just going to take a quick look at "dry stuff". This was in low water during November a few years ago . If I went further I would use a shorty if I were able to float on a device. I have seen trip reports where most do use wetsuits of some type. I suspect you will be fine with what you plan to do. I am thick and buoyant and can take cold water well and a strong swimmer as I swim 4 miles per week and have for a couple decades.
It only takes one person to surrender a dog to a kill shelter ,but it takes many to rescue it.
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Re: Wetsuit for Snail Shell

Postby rchrds » Oct 28, 2011 2:40 am

Paul, that will be enough for a 3-4 hour trip, as long as you keep moving- fast. Of course it depends person to person, and if you go upstream or downstream and how far. The upstream you swim for 30-40 minutes straight- if you kick the whole way (fins) with a good floaty, you will stay warm enough to be alright when you finally get out of the water and start climbing your way around to the sump. If you go downstream, you probably wont kick as much going in, and you are going to eventually get pretty cold. The floaty is the key here- a PFD is not really the best answer, as it keeps you too low in the water- something that you can climb partially up on, or that you can get your chest halfway out of the water makes all the difference. We have a small walmart boat that we pile gear in, and then you can sort of lay on the back and kick it upstream. a double swimming kickboard is also a good option. Just don't get the cheapest floatie that deflates in the back of the cave on you, leaving you no other flotation.... Bad Scene.

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