looking towards Pismo contemplating how much work it is to swim there...

Apparently we have a week’s worth of storms en route to the California Coast which is probably going to put a damper on my ocean swimming for a little bit. We’re leaving the possibility of swimming open for Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday but we’re going to have to play it by ear based on water quality and surf conditions. A little rain never hurt anybody… especially somebody out to go swimming… but rain induced run off isn’t such a good deal so we’ll see.

it was gorgeous for lunch, but the rain started hitting this evening

Although you could feel a change to the weather coming it was very nice out for lunch. Visibility was good with some scattered clouds and the wind wasn’t too noticeable. The ocean itself was calm, mainly little mushy waves with the occasional surprise set of 3 or 4 footers rolling through. Niel measured 54.5 off the pier, but it felt way colder. We’ve been averaging 55 for the last 2 or 3 weeks and I gotta say that felt like way more than a half degree drop! Yikes!

Getting in was a little hard just because the cold was pretty serious feeling today, luckily a set of bigger waves helped speed up the process for me… you can’t really fight the process anymore when a wave breaks on top of your head! We came up with a plan while walking out through the waves… we’d swim to the tip of the pier, cut over to Fossil Point, and then swim back down the buoy line to the pier. According to Google Maps it’s about 1.25 miles.

Niel in the water

Niel took off swimming first and after a little more acclimating and cursing I tossed myself in and chased after him. I definitely felt the burn of the cold on the way down the pier, but by the time we stopped to regroup I had largely gotten over it. From the tip of the pier you could see all the way down the coast to Pismo and I definitely had my upcoming Pier to Pier swim on the brain. I can’t wait to get out and do that!

Our next leg was a nice unbroken stretch of about 750m. Our plan was to stop a little short of the point though because it looked like some waves were breaking down there. As we neared the point the water started to get a little scuzzy. Gross little bubbles and it didn’t smell so fantastic… fun! My hypothesis is that there was a big flotilla of birds out there earlier in the morning. If you get enough of them in one spot for long enough they leave an oily stinky sheen on the water for a while. Ew.

frothy... ewww

We didn’t hang out for too long in the middle of all that… we took a straight shot all the way back to the pier along the buoy line. We took a quick pause there next to the pier and then decided to swim it in. I tried to catch a wave en route but it was a no go. I set my sites on a pretty decent wave, positioned myself pretty well, but without fins I just wasn’t fast enough to catch it. I was like 3/4 of the way there but couldn’t quite tip into it.

look how red I am from the cold!

Later in the evening I added on a little pool swim to round out my day. I had grand plans of like 3000m but that didn’t exactly happen. I got in a few hundred meters short course and then they got to work moving the bulkhead for LCM. This turned into a 20 minute trip to the hot tub for me and major momentum killer. I swam another half hour or so, but nowhere near what I wanted to, oh well. At least I went and I’m building up the habit of going in the evenings to swim solo again.

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