Today's post is written by John Hampsey
There were four swimmers today—Niel, Tom, Amy, and myself. The sky was gray and the water chaotic-looking. The predominantly north-east wind of the past 5 or 6 days was reluctantly giving in to a shifting south-east wind that was promising to bring rain. The breaking waves were large at times but tumultuous rather than linear. The four of us entered the sea slowly and eventually swam 1/3 of the way along the pier then turned left to head to the reef buoy. The rock and roll of the water, and the large swells, made for a challenging swim. At times it was hard to site. Next to the buoy I could feel the push and pull of the cross currents.
We decided to head for the end of the pier, which I thought would take us beyond the high swells. But it was Proteus’s day and the swells were rising and rolling even out past the pier, a rare condition. At that point we decided to head back to shore for what proved to be the most interesting leg of the swim because, even though we were moving in the same direction as the waves, the currents underneath were pulling back against us.
We were in the water for an invigorating 46 minutes. The water temperature was 54 degrees by the shore and probably 52 farther out. We swam about 4/5 of a mile and earned every inch of it.