We had a lovely winter day at Avila Beach today; sunny, no wind, 1 - 2 foot waves, 55 degree water and an empty beach and a nice group of swimmers. Rob and Allison were here to get some sun and beach exposure before returning to Arcata. Joining them were Rick, Niel, Dave Van Mouwerik, Sylvia, Stephanie, Amy, John Hampsey, Dale and Pete Kelly. Allison was going to paddle with us in her little white kayak and DanniLu and Brett were on the Big Red tandem kayak. Dave and Rob, the no wetsuit contingent, were happy with doing about a mile along the line where the buoys are in the summer so we swam out to the catamaran and turned left.
We grouped up at the big rock near the end of the seawall and headed back the way we had come, went under the pier and continued parallel to the beach down to the mouth of the creek.
We had nice swimming conditions the whole time. After our amazing summer of warm water I am having to work at getting reacclimated to more normal water temperatures. The first 5 or 10 minutes is now like the first couple of hundred meters in the pool or the first mile of a run on a cold morning, something that has to be pushed through before I get comfortable.
Changing the sampling setting on my GPS made only a small improvement to the accuracy of the plot. I'm going to do two things next Sunday to see if the plots improves. First, on the last two plots I had forgotten to change the sport setting in the device from Running to Ocean Swimming. I'm hoping that the Swimming setting does more buffering of the data, to both account for the movement of my wrist and the occasional loss of signal, and thereby smoothing out the plot, and I'm going to run both my old FINIS Hydro Tracker and the new Garmin 910 on the same swim and see how they compare. The FINIS has always produced a very accurate plot. It attaches to my goggle strap and rides on the back of my head and has a much more stable location while I'm swimming.
It was great to see and be on the water with Rob, Allison and Dave.
Rob and Allison, travel safely and we hope to see you again in a few months.