Those of you that have followed the Adventure Beard and I across the last 5+ years have probably noticed that there hasn’t been a lot to follow recently. At the beginning of the year I turned my attentions towards academic pursuits at the cost of my blogging time. After thinking about it for a couple months I’ve decided to wrap up Rob Aquatics for now. I’m not going to stop swimming. I’m not going to exit the ocean swim scene. I’m just not going to be writing for a yet to be determined amount of time. However, if the inspiration strikes I imagine that I have plenty of blogger friends who would humor me by allowing a guest post :)

Although there wasn’t much broadcast here I was very busy throughout “channel season.” I crewed Julian R’s successful San Miguel Island to Santa Rosa Island swim (a first!), Observed Bob N’s Santa Cruz Island attempt, crewed Lynn K’s Anacapa Island Circumnavigation attempt and follow up Santa Cruz Island to Anacapa swim success (another first!), and pace swam JC M’s successful 15+ hour battle with Catalina Island.

Lynn K tries to round Anacapa

post San Miguel to Santa Rosa high five for Julian

This summer also saw a lot of swim adventure planning. I helped plan and put together a Triple Martini swim, a 4th of July Pirates Cove 5k swim, and an Avila Dolphins field trip to visit the Monterey Kelp Crawlers. We even got a new night of swimming on the local schedule with Friday night swim and tailgate time at Lopez Lake. In the middle of all this local activity I got to bring quite a few new swimmers online and get them settled and comfortable in open water, that always makes me happy on the inside!

Fast Brad at Lopez

Making the turn at Pirates Cove

the gang visiting Pacific Grove!

I mixed in some other watersports… I participated in the Harmount Pier to Pier Paddle that runs from Avila Beach down to Pismo, and I also took an intro to rowing class from the SLO Rowing Club up at Lake Santa Margarita.

start line for the Harmount Pier to Pier Paddle

Rowing is fun! Too bad the club is 45 minutes away...

I was fortunate to be able to take part in a couple adventures as a swimmer by acting as an extremely late addition to a Santa Cruz Island relay which covered the 19.9 miles to the mainland in a little more than 12 hours. I also swam all the piers in SLO County (San Simeon, Cayucos, Morro Bay x 2, Avila Beach x 3, and Pismo) with some Laguna Beach Oak Streaker friends.

2 Victorious Santa Cruz Island relays celebrate on the beach in Oxnard

Climbing out of places that no one should swim in Morro Bay

One of the coolest things that came out of this season was the release of the movie Driven which features Marathon Swimming in the Channel Islands. It follows 3 swimmers, Fiona, Cherie, and Evan on their attempts from last year. Since I was on 2 out of 3 of those boats you’ll spot me all over the place in the film! Narcissistic big screen amusements aside, the film does an outstanding job of showing the public what the sport is about and what it is we’re doing out in the ocean in the middle of the night. You can buy a copy here.

If you’ve been a fan of the blog and would like to high five me on the way out, I’m involved with Will Swim for Food again this year which is a mid-December swim around the Santa Cruz Wharf that raises money for Food Banks. Last year Will Swim for Food raised over $50,000 which is an absurdly fantastic amount of money. I’m getting some of my Avila Dolphin friends to join me and hopefully we can contribute a meaningful amount to the fundraising totals this year. $5, $500, whatever you don’t need right now… anything is appreciated! Click here to donate or to learn more about Will Swim for Food click here.

Click to Donate! Please and thank you :)

I really want to sincerely thank everyone who has read Rob Aquatics, left comments, befriended me in real life, invited me to share your swims, loaned me goggles, supported my causes, given me rides, emailed me questions about fins, let me sleep on your couches, shared your stories of how something I wrote helped or encouraged you to try something new, bought zebra striped swimsuits, and came to visit me in Avila for a swim. You guys are the ones that made it worth all the writing and picture editing and traveling. You kept me motivated to keep training and achieve higher and higher goals. When I came back to swimming I had a hard time with 200 yards. I peaked out somewhere around 12+ miles and I still have some substantially longer swims brewing in my head for the future.

being enthusiastic will get you a lot further than being good

Don’t think of this as goodbye so much as a double crossing… I just need to sit on the beach a minute before I swim back to the other side :)

Your friend in salty adventures,

Rob D.

3 Responses to “Swimming Off Into the Sunset”

  1. Evan says:

    A sad day for the rest of us who have selfishly taken your writing for granted, but I know it represents progress and other good things happening in your life.

    What an adventure it has been! Come back anytime, y’hear?

  2. Bart Cobb says:

    All the best Rob. When I first started marathon swimming a few years back you were among the first people I met at an Oak Streakers swim. I have benefitted from your experience and insight. Thank you for promoting this great sport and it’s people.

  3. IronMike says:

    You (and Evan) are the reason I started blogging. I’ll miss reading your blog.

    You are, of course, ALWAYS invited to guest blog over at Iron Mike’s Marathon Swims!

    Cheers brother,