Wednesday nights swimmers were Ryan, Niel and Rob. I got a water temperature of 60 degrees off of the right side of the pier. There was a mild offshore breeze that was blowing from Avila towards Port San Luis and some big long swells that I could see moving through the water all of the way out at the end of the pier, but they were only making an occasional 3+ foot wave. Perhaps the shape of the swell was wrong for this beach? Other than a few pelicans and gulls, there were no birds and no seals. We swam an easy, and short mile, which was fine with me. I just wanted to get in the water and loosen up my shoulders after a day at my desk, Ryan is starting to taper before the Scott Tinley tri next weekend and Rob, our real ironman, was looking to 'do something easy' after completing a 10 mile solo swim in La Jolla on Sunday. That's right, 10 miles, in 4:42. I'd still be passed out on the couch. Anyway, we went in on the left side of the pier, crossed under and swam to the last buoy at the creek. There was a BIG temperature change between the two sides of the pier. How the water can change 4+ degrees in 50' is a mystery to me. From the last buoy we swam to the end of the Avila Pier, where there was another big cold spot, and retraced out course back to our starting point on the left side of the pier. It was a beautiful evening at Avila with a great sunset and after the hot weather getting in the water felt wonderful.
I'll be out of town this Sunday. Rob is getting caught up on work but will try and make it to the beach for Sunday's regular swim. If you see him give him an bit att'a boy!
It was hot at Avila Beach today but not as hot as just about anywhere else in San Luis Obispo County. At 10:30 it was warm, sunny and windless with flat water conditions and 3' to 4' surf. The water was fairly clear but had some clumps of kelp mixed in. The water temperature was 59, which was a pleasant surprise as the hot offshore winds that began Friday usually cause the water temperature to drop. There was a large raft of birds between the Avila and Poly Piers but they were just roosting and not feeding. I only saw a few seals and no pelicans. We had twelve swimmers today. Two new swimmers got there kind'a late, as I was getting in the water, and I didn't get their names. Those I knew were Sylvia, Duke, Chad, Brittany, Rick Marina, Gerry Gross, Kim, Allison, Pete and Niel. We took a route that would not involve swimming on the right side of Avila Pier where the birds were and would accommodate several different levels of experience and distances. The complete route was to swim down the buoy line on the left of the pier, past the last buoy and all of the way to Fossil Point, from there to the end of the Avila Pier and to return in along the length of the pier. The complete swim would be about 1.25 miles. Sylvia, Brittany, Allison, Kim and the new swimmers went down the buoy line to about half way to the point and came back. Duke, Niel, Pete and Chad went to the point. Duke and Chad headed back along the buoy line while Niel and Pete went to the end of the pier and in. Gerry did one and a half full laps of both sides of the buoy line. Pete and I were in the water for 42 minutes. Gerry swam for about 50 minutes.
Rob and I will be swimming Wednesday night. We meet at the same location and get in the water at 5:30.
A lot of our swimmers, including myself, will be out of town next Sunday so the group will be somewhat reduced.
We were 3 swimmers deep on Wednesday - Me (Rob), Ryan, and Pete. The weather was beautiful but there was a pretty healthy breeze blowing. You could see the water moving right to left at a pretty good pace. Since there was a little wildlife activity on the left hand side of the pier we decided to swim on the other side. The water temperature did not live up to the air temperature at all! The ocean buoy said it was 53 and I'd guess the temperature near shore where we were swimming couldn't have been more than 55. We swam out to the creek buoy then to the top of the pier. From there we turned around and followed the same route back. All told we were in for about a mile.
If you want to get in one of these Wednesday night swims you better hurry up! The days are getting shorter and the time change is almost upon us... once we run out of sunlight we're out of evening swims until next year!
We had ten swimmers today; Niel, Sylvia, Chad, Brittany, Pete, Margarete, Kim, Gerry, Christine and Duke. Margarete and Christine joined us for the first time and Kim was back for her second swim with us. The water temperature was 56, there was a very slight wind from the SW and a small surface swell from the NE. The water was very clean and there was an occasional 4+ foot wave. I didn't see any seals, pelicans or other birds of any consequence while I was out taking the water temperature. We got a slow start because fog was still hanging hanging along the beach at 11 and everyone was slow getting ready, waiting to see if the visibility would improve. By about a quarter after the fog was lifting and the buoy line was easily visible so we got started. With swimmers new to us along and the fog we decided to stick to swimming the both sides of the buoy line. That way, it would be easy to find the beach if the fog settled back in or someone wanted to swim a shorter distance. Instead, the sun came out and the fog burned off as we were swimming our first leg. With the sun out it felt wonderful in the water. This was Brittany's first swim since her accident. She has a good swim with no problems and got out at about half way. Kim went the full distance this time and was smiling when she got out. We swam for a half hour. After the swim it was very clear, sunny and warm on the beach with almost no wind.
Rob and I will continue to swim on Wednesday evenings until it gets too dark. I'll post it here when we are done with evenings for the summer.
We had four swimmers Wednesday evening; Eric, Niel, Pete and Ryan. The water was exceptionally clear and 59 degrees. There was a steady offshore wind, which in Avila blows from left to right setting up a current along the beach to the west and pushing up a small chop that was coming into the beach at 45 degrees from the left. There was a big raft of small shore birds that extended from off of the end of the Avila Pier half of the way over to the Poly Pier. They were just sitting on the water with not much feeding going on. I only saw a few pelicans and no seals. Not wanting to swim in water that was full of bird poop we elected to swam parallel to the beach on the left side of the pier. We swam out to the buoy line and down the beach to the left all of the way to Fossil Point and back. The chop was small enough to not be a serious challenge. We swam all of the way to the point, close enough for Ryan to climb up on an exposed rock. The water was clear enough that you could see a lot of detail on the bottom. The wind was dying but still had enough in it to give us a push on the way back. A couple of small seals picked us up when we got close to the Avila Pier and followed us in to the beach. We were in the water for 42 minutes.
We had nice swimming conditions today, it just could of been sunnier. The high gray clouds were hanging in over Avila and most of the rest of the coast. I could see Shell Beach but not Pismo and the fog was edging over the hills behind the port. There was a slight but steady breeze from the west and a small chop on the water. The water looked very clean, the waves were transparent and the water temperature was 57 degrees. I did not see any birds or seals in the water while I was out on the pier. Swimming today were Niel, Silvia, Duke, Kim, Bianca, Chad and Eric. Bianca is a guard a Paul Nelson Pool and knows Sylvia well. In fact Sylvia taught her to swim when she was 6 months old. Her friend Kim came along to try out ocean swimming, her previous open water experience having been limited to Lopez Lake. We elected to swim down the buoy line to Fossil Point and back. This would be a long mile and as it was all parallel to the shore it would give the new swimmers an opportunity to bail out at any point in the swim. We had a good swim. Sylvia spent some time with Kim, helping her get comfortable in the water. The wind had died down while we were getting ready but picked back up not long after we got started so the chop was building up, especially closet to the point. I had seen two seals in the water while we were getting ready and they tailed Sylvia and Kim for a ways, but they seemed to be more lonely than anything else. Dale McVay came by to say high and fill us in on her adventures in limited training (no biking or swimming) while she is waiting out her 6 week convalescence for a chipped bone in her elbow. She has about a week left before she will be good to go. Rob was in Chicago this weekend for the Big Shoulders 5K but he and I will be here Wednesday evening. Wednesday swims traditionally continue until the end of DST, but this year we go back to Standard Time on November 7th and it may well be too dark before then. You'll see if here first when we decide to quit Wednesday evenings.
It was Rob, Ryan and myself this evening. There were low clouds and fog at Avila at 5 PM. Visibility was about a half mile but varied considerably. I could not see Fossil Point or the rock from the beach but in to opposite direction the hills behind the port were clearly visible. It was perfectly still and the water was so flat there could of been lane lines out there. What waves there were were about knee high and I did not see any birds or seals. The water temperature was 58.5. Since the fog was thinner between the Avila and Poly piers we decided to go that way and planned a couple of stops for route checks in case the fog decided to move in. We went in on the right side of the pier and swam down the buoy line to the creek. The lack of sun made the water feel more like 55 to me. things looked good at the buoy so we headed over to the second crossbars at the Poly Pier. We could just see the end of the Avila Pier across the way so we stayed on our proposed route and swam to the end of the Avila Pier. This leg is about .4 mile so combined with the super smooth water conditions I was able to let my mind go and just think about my body position and my stroke. It was very help full that I am now much better at swimming in a straight line than I was when I started swimming in the ocean. At the end of the Avila Pier we were in the middle of four Pale Kai outrigger canoes who were forming up before heading out on their evening workout. We exchanged greetings and we headed in along the west side of the pier. About half way in the sun came out and quickly burned off the fog. It is surprising how much warmer I felt in the water with just the late day sunshine on me. This swim was just over a mile and I had us in the water for 35 minutes. Afterwards Kris and I had dinner at the Mercantile and at 7 PM the fog and clouds had completely gone leaving starry sky's. Rob is going to Chicago this weekend to swim the Big Shoulders 5K. I'll be at Avila on Sunday.
Today was an improved rerun of yesterday. Call if fog or low clouds, it was gray and visibility was about 2 miles. There was no wind, the ocean was flat and glassy and the water temperature was 57 degrees. There were lots of fishermen on the pier but almost no birds except for a few pelicans and just a few seals. The holiday brought out a few faces that we have not seen in a while. Swimming today were Sylvia, Niel, Rob, Duke, Kevin Watkins, Blake and Fred. I did not get Fred's last name but but he is friends with Kevina dn Blake and I believe that he used to swim with us in the late 90's. Kevin's son Charlie was along to paddle for us. As we were heading out we collected a guy who was out swimming by himself. Monte had heard of us but had not been sure how to find us at the beach. We did the triangle swim clockwise with three variations. When we got to the end of the Avila Pier Sylvia decided to head in. Blake, Kevin, Fred and Monte headed to the last buoy at the creek and Rob, Duke and I headed over to the second set of crossbars on the Cal Poly Pier. We only had a couple of seals pop up to check us out when we regrouped, nothing like the dozen or so that corralled us the last time we swam over there. We came back the the last buoy at the creek, along the buoy line, under the pier and in. It was about 55 minutes for us and about 1.7 miles. As we were heading to the showers a huge flock of sea birds wheeled in and settled on the water to the left of the Avila Pier, which was very good timing on their part. Rob and I will be back Wednesday evening to swim at 5:30.
It was not very crowded at the beach this morning for a holiday weekend. Not too many people on the beach and very few in the water. The atmospheric conditions could be described as 'fogcast'. Call it high fog or low overcast, it was very gray but visibility was over a mile, so navigating would not be a problem. The air was very still with glassy conditions on the surface of the water. There was no swell, the waves were knee high and the water temperature was 57. There were several individual pelicans about, occasionally diving on a fish and a large group of seals that seemed to be just swimming about amusing themselves. At the beach today were Sylvia, Niel, Rob, Joe, Allison, Duke, Chad and Brittany, and Gerry Gross. Brittany is still recovering from the soreness remaining from being rear ended so she was not swimming, but it was good to see her back at the beach. Nobody was feeling particularlymotivated to push so we wound up swimming the triangle route counter clockwise. The water felt colder than 57, probably due to the lack of sunshine. Still, the water conditions were about as accommodating as they will ever be and we all enjoyed ourselves. The sun made its appearance as we were rinsing off and the warmth was very welcome after the swim.
We will swim tomorrow at 11 and have a pot luck lunch afterwards.
Wednesday night was just weird. First off it was hot and totally sunny in San Luis Obispo all day. I didn't even think of taking a jacket with me when I left for the beach. The air turned cool and damp when I was getting off of 101 at San Luis Bay Drive and Avila was completely wrapped in a thick ground fog that extended half way from the beach to Avila Road. I couldn't see the buoy line from the sand. It was windless and the water was flat and glassy with only small surf. The water temperature was 60 degrees. Could of been great swimming conditions except for the fog and the birds. It was hard to see, but there were two very large rafts of 100's, maybe 1,000's, of sea birds, one on each side of the pier. All I was seeing through the fog was large dark areas on the water that could of been kelp, but there are no kelp beds that close in and in time I could pick out enough movement in the darkness to tell that it had to be birds. The one on the left side extended in to roughly half way between the buoy line and the sand. The one on the right was much farther out. I only saw two seals but with the visibility as poor as it was that was not an accurate count. Rob, Peter, Ryan and Eric showed up to swim. By 5:30 the birds had moved off out of site and the fog had lifted enough to see out past the buoy line from the beach, so the five of us decided to get wet. We decided to swim parallel to the beach keeping about half way between the surf line and the buoys. We started out towards the creek and the glare from the sun on the fog was so intense that it had me navigating by looking at the beach. The water was much colder by several degrees on the right side of the pier. A bunch of seals had us surrounded when we stopped to regroup at the creek. We headed back and under the pier. We were going to continue our course parallel to the beach and turn around a the big white rock at the end of the retaining wall, which is approximately the point along the beach where the last buoy used to be. However, just past the pier we found that the raft of birds had floated back in and was inside the buoy line, so Rob, Niel and Pete decided to head in while Ryan and Eric continued on to the turn around spot. The three of us waited on the shore for until they came in out of the fog, angling in to avoid the birds.
Kris and I stayed for dinner, and when we were leaving at 7:30 the fog had moved out to the end of the pier, leaving clear twilight sky's over the beach and no birds in sight.
Labor Day Swim - We will swim on Sunday at 11 as usual and on Monday, Labor Day, at 11 with a pot luck lunch afterwards.