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Belize's water temperture in early December???

Discussion in 'Belize' started by djanni, Nov 13, 2005.

  1. djanni

    djanni Photographer

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Cozumel, MX
    We're wondering if 2mm shorties are enough during early December. We're taking our 3mm full suits and hoods but we're thinking about taking the shorties for a change of pace; that is unless we would get rediculously cold.

    One resource gives this statement: October-December Air temperatures can be 75° F to 80° F. Water temperature is usually 82° F to 86° F and in late December it drops to 80° F.

    Another resource givers this statement: The waters of Belize are temperate and clear, making it ideal for divers and snorkelers. Temperatures range from 77-78 degrees Fahrenheit during the winter months to 83-84 degrees during the summer.

    I can see a minimum 3 degree variance in those reports and that's enough to make a difference.

    Does anyone have some accurate information?

  2. DiveMaven

    DiveMaven Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Kihei, Maui & Vancouver, WA
    Peterbj7 (who lives in Belize) posted that the water should be about 81 degrees in December.

    What exposure protection you wear depends on your personal cold tolerance. We'll be in Belize mid-December and my husband plans to dive in his 3mm full and I'm diving in my 5mm full.
  3. Ayisha

    Ayisha DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Toronto, Canada
    A full suit also provides more protection from the environment, such as jelly fish, etc.
    Of course, a full suit will also keep you warmer than a shorty.

    In 80F water, I wear a 3mm full wetsuit, which keeps me comfortable. After multiple dives over multiple days, though, I find that I start to get a little cold, especially on the night dives when there's no sun to warm you up after. I have never worn a hood in warm water.

    Like DiveMe said, it depends on your cold tolerance. But if you were to use a 2mm, a full 2mm would be better, I believe.

    Probably if you're too warm in your full 3mm and you just don't wear the hood, you'll be fine. You can also let a little water into your suit if you get too warm - there's a quick fix.

    If you get too cold during a dive, which is quite possible with extended dives, there's nothing you can do, but being too warm is easy to fix. ;)
    anklefoot likes this.
  4. djanni

    djanni Photographer

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Cozumel, MX
    Thank's for the advice and comments but I'm actually trying to locate a source that reports water temperture or an individual who lives in Belize or has a lot of experience there during the month of Dec.
  5. hil71

    hil71 Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Scotland
    Have been down there 3 times at that time of year (wish i was going this year!) and have only worn a shorty - was fine most of the time - bit chilly one night after a night dive though!
  6. Jeff88

    Jeff88 Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Independence,KY
    I was just there last week. Dove off off Ambergris Caye and Turneffe...water temp all 3 days was 82 degrees. I was fine just wearing a dive skin.
  7. Hank49

    Hank49 Instructor, Scuba

    I live here in Belize and right now it's colder than usual. We've had some cold fronts come through with 18C air temps in the morning. I could see my breath last Thursday just before sun up. Been snorkeling and diving in a full 3mm and a 4x3 (it's a bit old though) and I was cold. I mean shivering a bit. It may warm up a bit though.
  8. peterbj7

    peterbj7 Dive Shop Owner

    # of Dives:
    Location: San Pedro, Belize and Oxford, UK
    Air temperatures have been a bit low lately, but they're now back up to normal. Water is still around 81F, though it varies a bit depending on the direction of the tide (incoming tide = lower temperature). I dive most of thetime in a skin and have no problems, though after 2 1/2 hours in the water yesterday I was beginning to get a little cool. Nothing serious, though. On the boat I have a windproof jacket if the breeze is cold, but yesterday I didn't feel the need to wear it.

    But all said and done, what's toasty warm to one person can be frigid to another. I think most people would be fine here in winter with a 2 or 3mm full suit. I personally prefer a full suit for the protection reasons others have mentioned, though for warmth a shorty would be fine.
  9. djanni

    djanni Photographer

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Cozumel, MX
    Peter and Hank:

    Thanks to both of you. Yesterday we talked to the Nekton people in Florida. They said the reports they are getting from Belize is the water is running 75 to 79 degrees. They qualified that by saying we err on the cold side.

    Anyway, we decided to buy 2 new 5/4 wetsuits and hoods. So we'll have 3/2's and 5/4's with us on the trip next week.

    We're more concerned with how cold we get after 2 or 3 days of diving so hopefully we'll be fine with those 5/4's and a hood.


  10. vimaldude

    vimaldude Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: SF Bay Area
    Just came back from Belize last Saturday. Stayed at Hamanasi and dived the Southern Barrier Reef.

    The water was just fine. It was about 75-77 air temp in the morning. The water temp was a bit cold at the surface (about 72-74) but nice and warm at the bottom (at 40', it was about 78-80). We did encounter a thermocline at about 20' so it was a bit cold when we were waiting at the safety stop. I was wearing a dive skin and was not uncomfortable at all. Some other divers were wearing 3 mm shortys..

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