Yesterday was a good day. I was able to get in two open water swims, see the sun rise and set from the water and spend time with friends.
Bountiful Lake - 6:30am
The first swim was early Wednesday morning at Bountiful Lake. When Gordon and I met in the parking lot it was still pretty dark and the air temperature was still pretty cool. The water temperature had cooled down considerably from the last time I was there. I guessed about 64, but after our swim Gordon's thermometer read 62.
In the past, when getting into cold water, I have usually waded in slowly to try to get used to the water before starting to swim. Recently I have adopted Gordon's cold water entry strategy: wade in until you are about to your waist and then jump in and go for it. I think that by wading in slowly until I am up to my neck I actually make myself more cold because I spend more time just standing in cold water and lowering my body temperature instead of swimming in it to raise my body temperature.
It was dark for all of the first lap and most of the second and I was wishing I had worn my clear goggles instead of the tinted and mirrored ones I had on. On the third lap the sun finally came up over the mountains. Although it did little to warm up the water, it was a welcome sight. I can't imagine doing a channel swim where you have to start in the middle of the night and swim in the dark (especially in the ocean).
There were a few spots where I got into a really good groove and felt like I was swimming fairly fast and efficiently. Even then, I still couldn't keep up with Gordon (who is a swimming machine)!
Both Gordon and I felt pretty good about spending an hour and a half in 62 degree water but if we get a relay team together for Trans-Tahoe we are going to have to get used to swimming in much colder water.
Lincoln Beach (Utah Lake) - 6:00pm
We walked a little ways down to the beach and got ready to get in. Luckily Jim had a can of mosquito repellent with him because they were out in full force! I have never seen that many mosquitoes in one place before.
We had to wade out into the water over sharp rocks for about 100 yards before it was deep enough that we could swim. There were a couple boats on the water and a few fishermen, but other than that we had the lake to ourselves. The water was calm and as smooth as glass. I didn't take the temperature but I would bet it was around 68 degrees. I have only swam one other time in Utah Lake and the water was pretty murky. I was hoping that on this side it would be a little more clear, but it was about the same.
Once we got out into the lake far enough that we could swim, we headed west towards the setting sun. I love swimming in the evening and wish that my schedule worked out so that I could do it more often. Seeing the sun set from the water is something that everyone should experience.
From the water we saw what looked like and island but was actually a mountain on the opposite shore. I immediately starting thinking about swimming from that point back to Lincoln Beach. After looking it up on Google Maps it looks like it's only about 4 miles, but would still be a fun swim. Karen volunteered to kayak for me if I decide to do it.
It was a great day and I was lucky to get as much swimming in as I did. I am also lucky to have great friends that share my love of open water swimming and are willing to go on these adventures with me.