So I’m in Long Beach this weekend for the SPMA SCM Championship meet and well I’m really not in meet mode. My sprinting has been non-existent and that “speedy” gear is nowhere to be found, so…. I decided to make the most of spending the weekend in Long Beach by setting up a swim date with Beth from ikayak4u.com to take a cruise around Naples Island!
I met her down on the beach at 7 and we caught up a little bit while I got myself ready to swim. I was in ankle deep water and it was definitely colder than I would have anticipated for this far south. When I was ready to get going I started to walk into the water and at about my waist I decided that this wasn’t going to work at all, it would take me forever to get all the way wet. Instead I made my way over to the dock right there and threw myself off it… way faster!
From here the plan was simple, swim around the island. Like I usually do I kept Beth on my right and she guided me across the water to the island and then around. We had all kinds of rowers to dodge today, they were everywhere and all different types. Beth was on high alert yelling or whistling at anyone that got to close to let them know there was a swimmer in the water. During that first 30 minutes I wasn’t feeling too hot, I hadn’t quite found my stride. After a quick feed I started feeling better and could kind of lose myself in the swim.
On the backside of the island we took our feed break a little early because there were some rowers coming that were looking a little squirrelly and we didn’t really trust too much. It was funny to see the looks from the rowers as they passed… wait a minute, someone’s IN the water :)
Once they were going we kept chugging along and had more boats pass us. In passing one dude yelled to Beth “you gotta get that guy a wetsuit for Christmas!” As much as I would appreciate the gift I’m not sure it would get used so much :) Pretty soon after that we swam under the last bridge on our route and it became very apparent to me that the tide was very high. The flag on the back of Beth’s kayak was hitting the bridge above! Yikes!
Back at the beach were we started I got all my stuff back off the kayak and finally found out the real water temp… 56… not crazy cold, but cold enough! My towel was in my truck so I did a brisk walk across the street to go get it and dry off. I think I was quite the site to see crossing the street dripping wet in a brown and green zebra Rob Aquatics suit in December! I’m pretty sure I got a bit of a look from the guy waiting for me to get across at the stop sign!