Sunday, June 25, 2017

Sunday June 25th, 2017

It was warm and sunny at Avila beach with an air temperature in the upper 70's and a water temperature of 59 degrees.  No wind to speak of, an occasional 3 to 4 foot wave and nice clear water. We had a nice crowd today; Niel, Sylvia, Duke, Dave Van Mouwerik, Steve, Heidi, Sydney, Katy, Maria, Jonny, John Hampsey, and Peter Kelly. 
It was nice to see Dave VM. He joins us when he needs to do some ocean acclimation prior to an ocean swim, which are anywhere between 6 and 20+ miles. Steve is a friend of Dave's who was over from the valley and joined us. Katy is from Utah and is here for the summer.

Sylvia and Peter would do their own swims. The rest of the group decided to swim the buoy line from the Avila Pier to its east end and to then see how everyone felt about distance and conditions. At the east end of the buoy line the water felt wonderful and everyone was enjoying themselves so we decided to swim to the end of the Avila Pier. 

Dave and Steve


 From the end of the pier we could head for the mouth of the creek which would end up being a 1 mile swim or head over to the Cal Poly Pier and come back which would be a 1.5 mile swim.  Everyone voted for 1.5 miles so to the Poly Pier it was. 
Grouping up at the Cal Poly Pier

From the C.P. Pier we swam back to the mouth of the creek, along the buoy line to our starting point on the east side of the Avila Pier and came in. I had 1.52 miles. Dave and Steve did an additional 1/2 mile along the buoy line. 
Steve Snyder and Nan joined us after the swim. The had come to the beach to watch the launch of a Falcon9 rocket from Vandenberg at 1:25, so I hung around. The launch was to put 7 (?) or 9(?) communications satellites into orbit. This photo is just after launch. The flare from the rocket is just above the gray line of clouds on the horizon and to the right of the white clouds. I think that the dark object above the white clouds is a bird. 

 You can see the flair of the rocket clearly in this picture.  Steve had some powerful field glasses and he could see the body of the rocket. 
 Gaining altitude. 
I lost sight of it when it was double this distance above the horizon. Just after that Steve saw the separation of the first stage and we began to hear the roar of the rocket.

Wednesday Evening Swim

There will be a swim this Wednesday evening. In the water at 6. We'll see if we can keep this going this summer.

Next Sunday we will plan a 4th of July Swim. Details will be in next Sunday's post. 


Friday, June 23, 2017

Wednesday Evening, June 21, 2017

Our First Wednesday Evening Swim of the Summer!

Wednesday Evening Swim, Johnny & myself had a nice chat (he has some most excellent travel stories) as we waited for anyone else who might show. Brenda, Amelia rocked up & that became our group of participants. Very nice weather on the beach and with no one having swam to the point, that became our route. Very minor surface chop with the temp being somewhere around 58°.
As we regrouped at the point I described the course for the Triple Martini. (we think Brenda took it to heart, since her direction looked like she was going to attempt it right then and there :) All in good fun. A very successful swim with the ladies following it up by adding a hike directly after.  See y'all Sunday.

Have Just a Magic Day !

Monday, June 19, 2017

Sunday, July 18th, 2017

I was out of town so this week's post if provided by Duke.

Pretty much perfect conditions for the Sunday Swim and at 10:58am and it was just ..... Duke. (Angela had dropped him off crutches & all). Then Sarah rocks up extremely  pumped to get in (fresh from Alcatraz Tri. where they had canceled the swim). It was just her and I ready to head out when two more ladies walk up that had seen the post on Facebook wanting to join in. (Brenda & Amelia). Sarah elects for a group photo and we head into the water. It seems about 55/56° and a bit rough. We had elected to swim the buoy line where the ladies are introduced to the word  "Maytag Swim" but they handle it great.  Upon returning back to the first buoy there sits Johnny with the comment "Duke, I think this is the first time I've ever beaten you to the buoy" (good laughter). He then joins us under the pier to the last buoy on the other side. A return to the beach with the ladies and Johnny completes swimming as we did solo. A very nice Father's Day Swim for all. 

On a side note, it's looking like 4 of us are planning this Wednesday afternoon a 5:30 PM Swim. Any & all who are of interest would be more than invited to join. 

Have Just a Magic Day !

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Sunday, June 11th, 2017

Niel, Jonny, John, Jim, Maria and Pete swam today. There was a strong breeze out of the SW and whitecaps on the windward side of the pier. The water temperature was 57 degrees. Pete did his own swim. The rest of us did a triangle counterclockwise. The direction of the four legs of the swim relative to the wind and chop would  be; into, across, with and into.  

At the first buoy. Jim, Jonny and MAria wondering where John is going. 

Maria, John and Jonny at the creek mouth.

John arriving at the end of the Avila Pier.

John and Jonny

Maria and John. Everyone was doing a cap adjustment at the end of the  pier.

Except Jim

It is nice to have the water warming up. We'll start thinking about some longer swims now that conditions are more comfortable.

Neither John nor I will be swimming next weekend. If someone will take some notes and forward them to me I'll get them posted. 


Sunday, June 4, 2017

Sunday, June 4th, 2017

A Beautiful Day But Possibly A Bit Sharky

We has a beautiful day at Avila Beach today; no wind, clean and 54 degree water, flat conditions, just beautiful for swimming. The only issue was that there were baitfish gathering offshore which were attracting birds and a party boat which came in close to the end of the pier to give the anglers on board a chance at the larger fish that would be below the bait fish. The larger fish attract seals and sea lions which are popular shark food. There had been no sightings but it is prudent to avoid an area where all of the other animals swimming in the water are either having lunch or are on the menu. 

So, we decided to stick to the buoy line.We would start out buy swimming down to the mouth of the creek and work out the exact route and distance from there.   

We had 13 swimmers in the water today; Niel, Sylvia, Peter, Amy, Jim, Heidi, Maria, Tara, Sam, Sydney, Sue, Johnny and John. 

This made for a nice crowd out at the first buoy,

and at the creek mouth. 

From the creek mouth we swam to the last buoy on the other side of the pier,

and then further on  to the far end of the beach near Fossil Point where we turned around and headed back to the pier. 

I had a total distance of 1.44 miles. 

A big smile  😉 and a 'hang in there'  to Duke who forgot to keep the rubber side down last weekend, crashed on his bike and has a badly bruised hip. 🚲  Nothing is broken and I understand that everything will heal except his pride. ♿


Monday, May 29, 2017

Sunday, May 28, 2017

We had a great swim on Sunday. The water was 55 degrees, flat and clear with small waves. Niel, Heidi, John and Jonny were joined by Kris, Joe, Sue, Archy and three other new swimmers who were new to the group and I never got their names.  We swam out to the buoy line and to the left to the las buoy. At this point Sue and Archy, who swim without wetsuits, kept going in order to keep warm. Two swimmers joined them back down the buoy line. One reformed, the rest of the group returned to where we started. Some additional people dropped off leaving Niel, Joe, Jonny, John and Heidi to swim to the creek and back with an extra buoy addin in at the end. That made it just over a mile for the group. 
Something was sticking to the lense of the camera, making the photos kind of a mess. Sorry about that and the lack of a plot. I'll try and not repeat the technical problems next Sunday.   


Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Whitie Is Back In Town

On Thursday there was what the lifeguards termed a 'credible' sighting of a white shark near the end of the Avila Pier.  No other sightings had occurred by Sunday and the beach wasn't closed so Niel, Jonny, Heidi and Duke got in and enjoyed the warmest water we have had this year. Since New Year's Day the water temperature had been between 49 and 53 and today I measured 55 degrees off of the Avila Pier. Spring conditions may be behind us!

It was warm in San Luis Obispo but surprisingly cool and foggy at Avila Beach. There were holes in the gray and a hint of wind so chances were that the wind would come up enough to clear off the fog.  

There were a lot of seals on the rocks to the west of the creek mouth so we decided to do a mile on the left side of the pier. 

Heidi, Duke and Jonny wading in. 

Heidi, Jonny, doing his shark imitation and Duke

What a difference a few degrees and sunshine makes!  We had wonderful swimming conditions with no sense of urgency to keep moving or to get out of the water. The wind did come up out of the SW, cleared out the fog and pushed up a 12" wind swell that was running towards the beach across our line, making things interesting.

We covered 1.01 miles and had a great time. 


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

Blown Out

Jonny, Heidi, Christina, Maria and Niel swam today and we had real ocean conditions for our swim.  The air temperature was about 60 degrees with thin high clouds cutting down on sunshine.  There was a strong and steady wind out of the NW that was making flags standing straight out and umbrellas take off down the beach.  When we were getting in there was 6 to 12 inch chop but not yet any whitecaps. I had recorded a water temperature of 52 degrees from our pier. 
The water temperature took 1 to 2 degree drop when we cleared the surf line. We swam under the pier and down the beach towards the last buoy at the creek mouth.  In the water the chop was more like a foot plus with a strong current making it a lot of work to make headway and to try and not swallow too much water. The was Christina's first time in rough conditions. It was cold, windy and she was trying a new top that was opening up in the water, so she headed for the beach. Jonny went with her. The rest of us went to the last buoy and came back along the buoy line and picked up Jonny.  We swam to the end of the pier and then in along the lee side of the pier.  We all had a great swim but .75 miles was enough. 
The leg down to the buoy at the creek mouth was almost into the wind and if you could figure out the chop it was just work. The leg out to the end of the pier was across the chop and was rough. I was doing best by breathing on my right so I could see when the chop was going to break over my head and catch a breathe on the left side. Coming in along the lee of the pier was the easiest leg as we had a bit of a push.

Heidi, Christina, Maria and Jonny before heading under the pier. 

Heidi at the creek mouth

Maria and Heidi at the same spot. The swell was messing with my photography 

Jonny, Heidi and Maria arriving at the end of the pier. The chop was starting to whitecap now.

Heidi and Maria.

In June of last year we were enjoying water temperatures in the upper 50's.  If we see that again this year it will be time to start planning some longer swims.


Sunday, May 7, 2017

A Rainy Sunday in May

I didn't go to the beach today. Maybe it was just the strangeness of going from 85 degrees to cool and gray in 2 day just put me off. It began raining around midnight Saturday and was still raining at mid-morning. While the water would have been warmer and the swimming nice I had been looking forward to sitting on the beach and relaxing, so, no beach for me today.

Next week for sure.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Avila Beach was warm and sunny today with almost no wind, 2' waves with nice clear water and the buoys are back for the season.  There was almost on one in the ocean.  I waded out and got a water temperature of 51 degrees in knee deep water.  The shallow water inside the waves is usually warmer than that which is outside the surf line so most beachgoers were finding it too chilly.  We confirmed this during the swim. The water temperature was about 1 degree lower outside the surf and the water between the Poly and Avila Piers was probably two degrees colder yet.
We had a big group today with some new faces; Niel, Christina, Heidi, Duke, Amy, Jim, Sam, Sydney, John Hampsey, Pete, Maria, (both had done the SLO 1/2 marathon this morning), Margarite, Sara and Sue.
Most people swam the route in the plot. Christina (this was her first ocean swim and no wetsuit) and Sam doubled back from the stop at the creek. Jim didn't come in along the pier but continued to the last buoy on the east side of the pier and came back parallel to the beach. 
I lost track of one or two people.

Getting in

Grouping up at the Avila Pier

Part of the group at the creek mouth

Sue, Jim, Sydney and Duke at the Cal Poly Pier

Sydney, Duke and Margarite

The water temperature should have bottomed out today so we should start seeing conditions more supportive to longer routes in May.