Monday, May 31, 2010

New Open Water Swim Spot

Well it doesn't look like I am going to be able to go out and fine my own canyon to explore this weekend. I *forgot* that I am in the middle of remodeling the living room, and I spent most of the day installing lighting fixtures and prepping the walls and ceiling.

But I did manage to try out a new open water spot down in Belmont Shore today. I've known about it - It's actually closer to me than Corona Del Mar. But I'd never been there. For some reason, I tend to head south to go do things. Belmont Shore is north. I know this sounds a little weird, but I'm not sure what to tell you.

Belmont Shore from the air. I swam along the beach running left to right in the upper mid left of the photo.

Belmont Shore is a really nice place. Though it's part of Long Beach, it definitely has it's own community vibe. The beach I swam at is at the south end of 2nd Street, which reminds me of Rodeo Drive with a beach community vibe. No Prada or Gucci shops, but there are a number of high end "California Couture" boutiques, and plenty of great restaurants.

The swimming spot is in Alamitos Bay on a little strip of beach parallel to Bay Shore Drive. Since it's in the Bay, the water completely calm and I dare say the water is a few degrees warmer than the ocean at the moment. There is a quarter mile buoy line along the beach. What is cool about it is that the buoys are never more than 50 feet from the shore, so I felt OK about swimming by myself. In contrast, you need to swim a couple hundred yards off shore to hit the buoys at Corona Del Mar. That's a little creepy when you are alone.

The buoy line.

I swam a mile. Part of me wanted to go longer, but I could feel that my stroke mechanics where breaking down. And since I've been working pretty hard with a coach on stroke lately, I didn't want to fall back into bad habits just for the sake of yardage. Plus I forgot to bring Body Glide, so my wetsuit was wreaking havoc with my neck.

You can barely see it, but I either just got back from the prom or I had a run in with my wetsuit. I assure you it's the latter and I promise you it hurts worse than it looks.

I liked it. Though I prefer Corona Del Mar due to more "open water" swimming conditions, it's good to know that I've got a back up, especially (or actually whenever) I need to swim alone.

From there I drove home in the Holiday traffic. As I predicted, the inland folks are back.

My world until Labor Day.


Matty O said...

I too have forgotten all of the home projects that my wife kindly "reminds" me about haha.

I wish we had warmer water around us. Still in the low 50's for another few weeks.

Even the wetsuit doesn't help cause your face freezes!

Nice job on the swim!

KovasP said...

Great new look on the blog, Patrick. So jealous that you have a cool backup to your amazing open water swim place. We're heading over to Michigan in a week or 2, so I'm going to try and brave Lake Michigan for some OWS.

skierz said...

don't you hate when the work projects cut in on the important training stuff! looks like a great swim spot. i am with you on getting freaked out on open water big swims, I bought a kayak and my wife actually spots me now. Have a great day!

Unknown said...

Patrick, my house and yard are both in serious disrepair right now, such is the life of the dedicated Triathlete, I guess?

I did an OWS yesterday with some friends and went sans wetsuit for the first time. I was a little slower but did about 2000-M with no problems. It is really amazing how just "doing" OWS's make you better at OWS. Enjoy the rest of you day!

Julie said...

Nice job on your open water swim! The beach looks gorgeous:) Sorry about the ouch on your neck! Body Glide next time:)

Happy Memorial day!

Caratunk Girl said...

Sweet new spot - it is good to have a place to go when you are alone - I have a spot I go to alone, but I swim dock to dock instead of buoy to buoy. Chafing sucks. Love the new look to your blog, BTW.

Tri-James said...

Nice wetsuit bite!

But down here in Mississippi we shed the wetsuits a couple of months ago!

KC (my 140 point 6 mile journey) said...

I just found a little hidden gem for an OWS a stones throw away from where i work. Now just gotta recruit a friend to spot me. Sorry about that wetsuit!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

ALways fun to find new spots to workout


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