Is a drysuit overkill in the Galapagos?

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paulthenurse

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We're headed to the Nortada on Sept 11th. We normally dive in New England and ALWAYS wear hoods and gloves and full 7 mm suits or drysuits. The water around here is in the mid 50's once you get below 40-50 feet and colder below that, so we're pretty used to the cold. That said, I like to be warm. I only want to bring one suit, but which one?. Wet or dry?

Thanks
 

divad

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I read that the air and water temps during Sept/Oct. average mid to low seventies and (water) down to sixty, so I would just take the drysuit.
 

decompression

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Not at all. Especially if you're doing multiple dives.


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pridkett

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This year I'd say that the drysuit is probably overkill. We were on the Nortada at the end of July and the water was very warn - far above normal. Darwin and Wolf were 82°F/28°C. Our coldest dive was at Pinzón Island where the water was a "frigid" 73°F/23°C. We dove in 7mm the whole time and were very toasty. Much of the boat were diving in 5mm suits. About half the boat was using hoods. You also should know that the Nortada is a small boat - although the dive deck is moderately spacious, donning and doffing your drysuits will likely be challenging.

You'll have to keep in mind that you can throw "normal" temperatures out the window this year thanks to El Niño. The Humboldt Current just hasn't brought the cold water and plankton this year. You'll want to take a peak at the NOAA El Niño report (NOAA El Niño: Research, Forecasts and Observations) before making a final call. More recent reports indicate the water has cooled slightly since we were there, but not much.
 

TSandM

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I dove dry in the Socorros, with water temps in the high 70's, and regretted it not a single bit.
 

WhiteSands

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I would definitely pack the drysuit. The water temperatures are one thing, but it's what happens after the dive that really makes me grateful for a drysuit. I especially dislike putting on a cold, wet wetsuit early in the morning.
 

hilljo88

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Dove the Galapagos in March 2014. No one brought a dry suit. A few of us dove Hollis semi-dry and were comfortable to hot. We did 4 dives a day, including a night dive and didn't really experience anything colder than late summer NE water temps. if you have the same conditions you could easily dive 3mil, with maybe a hood. Ultimately depends on water temps.Reports are that water temps have been even warmer lately. Enjoy the trip, definitely bucket list!!!

---------- Post added August 17th, 2015 at 05:32 PM ----------

One more thought: Aside from thermal comfort, the dives at Wolf and Darwin typically have you drop down on the rock wall and settle in to watch the show. Consequently, there can be a lot of abrasion around your knees. So which ever suit you bring, you might want to consider how it will hold up with some relatively rough treatment.
 

divad

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One more thought: Aside from thermal comfort, the dives at Wolf and Darwin typically have you drop down on the rock wall and settle in to watch the show. Consequently, there can be a lot of abrasion around your knees.

Do have to settle on your knees to watch the show?
 

diver_dj

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When I went, roughly half the boat dove dry and the other half dove wet. The wet half were making fun of us at the beginning of the week, but that didn't last long. By the end of the week, we were standing around waiting for them to pull on their cold wetsuits under the hot shower.

Take the drysuit. If it gets too warm, change out the underwear for something with less insulation.
 
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