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Thread: Safety of snorkeling Lac Bay

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    27

    Default Safety of snorkeling Lac Bay

    On our first trip to Bonaire two years ago we snorkelled Lac Bay with Rene and loved it. We subsequently talked to an experienced snorkeling couple who they said they would never snorkel Lac Bay without Rene because the current was quite dangerous and it was possible to get pulled out into the ocean.

    Has anyone had experiences with the current in Lac Bay? How safe is it? We will likely book another tour with Rene, but depending on the weather and her schedule I don't know if it will work to do Lac Bay. If not, I would like to snorkel it, but not if it is not perfectly safe (that and my wife is terrified of seeing a shark).

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    534

    Default

    There is a wicked ocean ward current over at La Cai side (north end). You can see this current from Goggle.



    That blue area just before the arrow head is the Tarpon Hole, milkey water and loads of Tarpon.

    Anyways, there is some most excellent snorkeling on the other side at the fisherman's pier. Easy in, easy snorkeling and MANGROVES and upsidedown jellies, also under the pier is way cool.

    If you are adventuresome and want a long walk, walk out to the barrier reef from the wind surf place. Long walk but some of the best reefs.
    and Joe said, Far from the things of Man.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default Lac Bai mouth current

    Cecil,

    Is that current 'tidal', i.e., ingoing during flood? Or at least diminished: no infinite source of water in the bay, is there, and normally an 'ingoing' wind? During 'normal' easterly winds it 'should' be tidal.

    How about exits 'outside' for emergency recovery?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    What happens (I think) is the tradewind blows the water into the bay and that is the channel for the excess water to exit. I have done that dive twice and both times the outbound current was quite strong and to get back we had to crawl sideways over the rocks starting from Baby Beach.
    and Joe said, Far from the things of Man.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Default

    Thanks for that. We have done the fishermans pier but I was more interested in the reef.

    So does that mean that it is safe to snorkel the bay side of the reef is you stay away from the channel on the north side? Any concerns on getting 'sucked' into that area? Is it easy to recongnize that you are getting close to that channel?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    534

    Default

    I have not snorkeled the south side but it's looks to be about a half mile walk from the wind surf place to the reef. Now that is through 2-3 foot deep water. Some people have done it and the comments generally were great snorkeling, long walk.
    and Joe said, Far from the things of Man.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN
    Posts
    28

    Default

    We have snorkeled the reef at Lac many times. True - long walk, great snorkel. But would recommend you don't attempt it when there are strong easterly winds and especially if the tide is coming in with those winds. While it is nothing short of spectacular when you get out there, in these conditions the water is deeper and the walk then swim into the incoming water pouring over the reef can be a real work-out. So yes, a highly recommended snorkel, but choose wisely the conditions under which to do it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    16

    Default

    That makes sense, Cecil: the easterly wind is my 'infinite source' of water, pushing lots in over the broad shallow area.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Default

    We are in Bonaire the first week of October so that is suppose to be the calm season so hopefully it is just that, though I am not sure that we will be able to tell how windy is too windy or how much water is coming in over the reef.

    I suspect that we may hold off and see if Rene can take us. Thanks for the advice

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Boca Raton
    Posts
    14

    Default Snorkeling Lac

    Nice pic Cecil.
    Your arrow points to the inlet part of the bay.
    The white hole where the school of tarpon usually are is not in that
    aerial shot, but rather south of their, also easily seen on Google Earth.
    I have snorkeled Sorobon and Lac about 100+ times in my 30 trips to Bonaire. My favorite area is still between the reef on the inside to look at the myriad of juveniles in the full colors and ultra clear water that is shallow but swimable (watching for urchins). Outside the reef (on calmer days), past the white hole is probably the best place to see turtles, but I recommend going with an experienced guide or person has done it before.
    Access the reef with an easy walk through the shallows starting at the fisherman's hut south of the Sorobon Resort.
    Also fun a night but do it in the day first to get your bearings.

    Bud

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