Thursday, December 1, 2022

Thursday, December 1st, 2022

Today's Tom's Toes Report (without the water temp guess) - 

Tom swim report for Thursday, December 1: cloudy and breezy at Avila this morning. Air temperature was 55 at 9:45 when I got in the water. There was a significant wind chop that was counter to the direction of the swell. It made for a good rough water worth (?), water swim!  Overhead the clouds were thick in places, and at the same time, there were several streaks and spots of blue sky showing. The air quality was amazing - I could see Point Sal like it was next door.  I'll be back on Saturday for another round.


Niel - 
I'm healed up and ready to swim, but I am going to see how much rain we get between now and Saturday morning before deciding about the water quality.  If San Luis gets the inch plus that is predicted I'd be concerned about the bacteria load.


niel 

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Tuesday, November 29th, 2022

Tom's Toes Report - 

Toms, swim report: my toes were in the water at 9:45. Air temperature was 52°, water temperature 51. A slight breeze, a bit of a bump on the water, and clear blue skies. Another beautiful fall day of swimming at Avila.  


I been thinking of having some fun by dropping in a plot of one of my runs but don't see the humor is sitting out. 
Trying to swim through the rash on my neck was a mistake. I've been able to do that before but this time it was bad enough that it wasn't going to get better until I stopped. I have been planning on swimming this Saturday but it will rain Thursday/Friday, so I may have to sit out the buggy water.

niel 

Saturday, November 26, 2022

Saturday, November 26th, 2022

A Tom and Niel MIA Swim Report -

Tom is in the Bay Area this weekend. I expect he will be swimming at Avila on Tuesday. 

Me, I'm waiting out the wetsuit rash on my neck to not be scabby before I get back in the water.
I did my part trying to emulate Duke and Jodi by swimming through the injury to my neck but the solution was to just stop and let it heal.  I'm estimating next Saturday for my return.

A Black Friday Deal On a Patagonia Wetsuit -

I'm selling my almost new Patagonia R3 Front Zip Wetsuit. I have used it for 6 swims and it is just not going to be for me.
The R3's are a great wetsuit. I've worn out 7 R3 back zip's. They are 3.5/4.5. They got me through the coldest water temperatures and kept me in the water through every winter. I decided to try the front zip version this time and getting it on and off is too difficult because of an old injury to my right shoulder.  I can do it but it feels too risky. 
So,  It is a Medium Tall. $489 new. Yours for $225.

Call or TEXT - 805.704.1817 

niel


      

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Thursday, November 24th, 2022

 Tom's Swim Report - 

Tom swim report for Thanksgiving morning: clear blue skies, air temperature was 60° when I got in at 945. There was a rolling bump on the water along with a 3 foot wave.  The water continues to be a solid 51°, although I hit some spots that I am calling 50 on the west side.  All in all, I am thankful for the beautiful water and swim! And, thankful for the brownies that Blog Master Niel brought me after my swim! Treats!  





Great to see you Tom. Kris and I had a very nice walk along the seawall. The Holiday's in the Central Coast can't be beat!


niel 

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2022

The Word For Today Was:

Stimulating?  Invigorating?  Inspiring? Shocking?........or

It was obsoletely beautiful in Avila Beach this morning except at 7:30 the air temperature was 32°F Only 19 degrees less than the water.  Everything else was the same, clear water, a swell out of the SW. Getting in didn't seem too bad. I sure didn't linger once I got out of my car. I already had my wetsuit on, just grabbed my cap and goggles, kicked off my Uggs and in my haste almost locked myself out of my car. Not being able to get to my stuff and my swim and dry off would have been too much extra fun.     

I did the Big Triangle, which can be close to 2000M if you get the corners in the right places.  

I had some trouble with my wetsuit. I didn't get it on right and the inner collar kept coming out letting water in. 
Unfortunately, I've got a bad rub on the back of my neck and will need to site out for a week (?) until it heals.  

I saw Tom parking as I was leaving. He sent this swim report:  

Solid 51 in the water today! Significantly, smaller bump, though. Beautiful day, beautiful swim. Oh, whenever you make those brownies, if you're willing to share, I would love to have one. :-)
(I had a box of brownie mix on the front seat) Tom probably needs the extra calories more than I do so I'll oblige him. 

niel

 

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Sunday, November 20th, 2022

 Winter At Avila Beach -

Super clear skies, light winds, no crowds, a clean ocean with no red tide and great visibility in the cold water. 

 
Tom was getting out when I arrived. I spoke with him as he was getting out. He thought the conditions were the same as yesterday. 
 
The air temperature was in the upper 60's, the water was 52° (my thermometer said 53°+ but Tom, David and I say 52°) and there was the same short period swell out of the SW that was pushy but not bothersome. It didn't look like much from shore but it grave the water a nice character.
 
David and I went out to the end of the Avila Pier and did four crossings between the Avila and Cal Poly Piers. We swam to the second crossbars, to a spot on the Avila Pier directly across from us, to the third crossbars and back to the end of the Avila Pier. It turned out to be a nice distance.  


David and Niel at the third crossbars on the CPP.

I expect to be back Tuesday morning at 8.

niel 


Saturday, November 19, 2022

Saturday, November 19th, 2022

Saturday was another great day for swimming at Avila. At 7:30 the air temperature was already about 60°. It was clear and sunny with an offshore breeze and small, short period swell from the SW. The water was 11°C/51.8°F. I took a lap around the CPP on the west side and the reef buoy on the east side.   

I saw Tom arriving as I was leaving.

I'll be back tomorrow at 11.

niel

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Wednesday, November 16th, 2022

My schedule is all messed up this week, so here I am swimming on Wednesday morning.

The conditions were great. at 7:00 it was 49°, sunny and there was an offshore breeze from the NE. The water was nice and clear and 11°C/51.8°F. Some 3 to 4 footers would sneak in amongst the smaller waves. 
The County's water samples from Avila Beach on Monday were within state standards so I swam on both sides of the pier. The wind freshened during my loop back to the start making things a bit pushy and bumpy.     



Cal Fire Pismo was there training new recruits.  

I'll be back on Saturday morning.


niel
 

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Tuesday, November 15th, 2022

 Tom's Swimming Report - 

Clear blue skies, glassy calm water. 51° air temperature, 51° water temperature when I got in at 9:30.  Beautiful day of swimming. A prediction: The water will be in the 40s by early December. 

Thanks Tom

niel

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Sunday, November 13th, 2022

 
Avila's numbers for Sunday: Air temp. - 60°, Clouds - 0, Wind - Light but getting gusty, Water temp. - 11.5°C/52.7°F, People to share the beach with - Less than 10, Surf - 1 foot+.  The surface of the water was picking up some texture and looked like it could get blown out later.    

I'm going to avoid the west side of the pier at least until Thursday. The county will have water samples from Monday morning to see if the funk from last week's rain has washed out.
I decided to swim to Avila Rock and to come back via Fossil Point instead of doubling back. 

On my right four pelicans on Avila Rock and on my left Fossil Point.

The water is beautiful, very clear with great visibility. It felt warmer today than yesterday morning. I think that was the warmer air and sunshine and not me feeling a .5° increase in the temperature.  On the way out I had an easier time of it than it realized. The wind was picking up and coming back was pretty bumpy and a bit of a slog.

Tom swam earlier. We both saw Duke, Tom when he was getting in and myself when I was getting out. He is planning on being back in the water to swim a U Burner on December 15th. I'll be there.

I'll swim Tuesday morning on the east side of the pier. 

niel   



Saturday, November 12, 2022

Saturday, November 12th, 2022

Somebody Turned Off The Water Heater While I Was Gone 

I was back in the water this morning after a 10 day break. It was a perfect morning for swimming with clear blue skies, no wind, flat and glassy water and knee high surf. The hiccup was that in the last 10 days the water temperature has cratered into the low 50's. Off of Fossil Point I measured a water temp of 11°C/51.8°F.  Over the last week Tom toes have been reporting 51° to 52° so he is well calibrated. 
When I got in at 7:40 the air temperature was 38° but the sun felt strong and it was going to warm up nicely. It was in the 50's at 9:30 when I left. 

 
The Blue Water Task Force numbers at Avila and up San Luis Creek from Thursday morning were high to very high (50X the limit for contact with the water) for bacteria so I planned to stay well away from the creek mouth and the right side of the pier.  

https://bwtf.surfrider.org/explore/34

I swam to Fossil Point, to the end of the Avila Pier, to the reef buoy and back to the pier.
This was a nice route and one that I have never done before. 

'Normal' winter water temperatures in Avila are in the mid 50's with a drop into the low 50's in the spring when we have offshore winds. Two years ago the water went from 55° to 51° Thanksgiving weekend and didn't pull above 52° until May. Last winter was back to 'normal'. I'm guessing that we are going to have a lot of cold swimming this winter.

Tom and I will be back tomorrow. I'll get in at 11.

niel

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Tuesday, November 8th, 2022

The county Health Dept. has closed the beaches for 72 hours due to the risk of bacteria in the water.
Tom and I will be in the water on Saturday.
niel

Saturday, November 5, 2022

Saturday, November 5th, 2022

Tom's Swim Report - 

Another excellent fall day here at Avila. Sunny, clear blue skies and scattered clouds.  Slight breeze, and a bump on the water.  The water was 53° again.  Excellent morning of swimming.

Thanks Tom, I'll be sitting out until next Saturday so it is all yours until then.

niel 

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Thursday, November 2nd, 2022

 Swim Report By Tom - 

Oh, Niel! We lost a degree this morning… My toes and teeth are telling me 53–54. Nevertheless, it was a beautiful fall day at Avila! Swimming was beautiful. 

Thanks Tom!

My Oh My. The usual winter water temps are around 55° so this is early for the water to be this cold. We may have a second extra cold winter ahead of us. 
Two years ago the water hit 51° right after Thanksgiving and didn't get above 52° until April.......

niel

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

November 1st, 2022

It was very fallish in Avila Beach this morning. It was getting light enough to swim at 7AM. There was a light wind. The ocean looked wintery or stormy with a small chop and a lot of swell. The waves are now 3 to 4 feet and are traveling faster and carrying a lot more energy. Even the whitewater wants to push me over.  The air temperature was 49°F and I measured a water temperature of 12.5°C/54.5°F at the end of the Avila Pier.  It didn't feel colder than last week but duck diving through the surf kept me from thinking about the water temperature. My feet are starting to stay cold for the entire swim so that is a sign of entering the lower 50's.  
I swam back and forth to the four buoys on the west side of the pier.
I'm guessing that last weekend was the end of the season for the lifeguards and that the swim line buoys will be coming out later this month.  



I have a meeting Thursday morning and will not be able to swim after. If this meeting becomes a regular thing I am going to need to find another day for my Thursday swim.

I will be back Saturday morning at 7ish. The time changes Sunday so I'll have more daylight for my early morning swims. NO, I will not be showing up at 6. 

As I was leaving I spoke to Tom as he was getting ready to jump in. If he texts' me I'll post his comments:   

Beautiful swimming this morning. Definitely fall conditions – my toes had 54°. Crisp, blue skies, scattered clouds. Decent swell, with a bump on top.  

https://www.npr.org/2022/10/31/1132768433/katie-ledecky-world-record-1500
If you missed this: Katie Ledecky broke the world record for the short course 1500M by 10 seconds. 

niel   

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Sunday, October 30th, 2022

 
At 10:30 it was 73°, clear, sunny and breezy in Avila Beach. The beach felt as empty as the photo. The water was clean, the lips of the waves were transparent and there were occasional 3 to 4 foot waves. The water temperature was 56°. 
David and I swam from the end of the Avila Pier to the second crossbars on the CPP, along the pier to the third crossbars, back to the end of the Avila Pier and then out to the end of the CPP and back. The wind was picking up and the leg from the Avila Pier to the end of the CPP was uphill all of the way and steeper near the CPP. The ride back had a nice push but was still choppy.  

Tom's report:
Swam at Cayucos again this morning...  wild conditions! Pretty decent size swell was in along with the wind chop. Made it a good adventure swim!  Water felt 56 again… 

I'll be back Tuesday morning at 7. 

niel

Saturday, October 29, 2022

Saturday, October 29th, 2022

 


Saturday morning I was in the water just after 7. Conditions were much like they had been all week; clear skies with a light offshore breeze, an air temperature of 42°, the water temperature was 13°C/55.4°F and a bit colder along the buoy line. 
I swam out to the end of the pier and then looped to each of the swim buoys on the east side.  


Tom and Sue were going to swim south from the Cayucos Pier to Whale Rock, about 1.5 miles.

I'll swim at 11 tomorrow. 

niel 

Thursday, October 27, 2022

Thursday, October 27th, 2022

I got in a bit after 7 this morning. It was clear with no clouds and a light offshore wind. The sunrise was going be beautiful. The air temp. was 44° and the water felt colder than Tuesday. I got in and pushed my swimming to get past the first shock and wound up never stopped until the first buoy on the east side of the Avila Pier where I took the water temp before heading for shore. I measured at water temp of 13°C/55.4°F which is fallish indeed. The water is nice and clean.  

I was too early for Tom or Sue to be there.

Tom's report -

56°, and choppy!  The air was crisp, and the skies were blue. Beautiful fall conditions.  excellent morning swim. 

I'll swim at 7 on Saturday and will use my winter wetsuit. Hopefully I won't spend as much time in the water thinking about the temperature and more about swimming.

niel

Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Tuesday, October 25th, 2022

Fall Comes To Avila Beach -

I arrived at Avila a bit after 7. It was clear and sunny with a slight breeze and an air temperature was 43°.  The asphalt was cold so I didn't want to take my UGGS off, but I could not figure out how to swim with them on, so I walked across the cold sand and waded in. 
The water felt colder but I couldn't sort out how much was due to a lower water temp and how much was because of the colder air temp and having cold feet getting in. 
I zoomed out to the end of the Avila Pier getting acclimated and then did a east and west triangle. 10 minutes in the shock and awe had passed and it was just colder, especially compared to a sunny 59° on Sunday. I measured 13.5°C/56.3°F along the buoy line. Usually the water temp will be 54° to 56° in the winter so I expect to see a lot more of days like today.
There was no red funk and the kelp is thinning out so the water is cleaning up really nicely.
Having cold concrete and the showers in the shade will require the relearning some lessons from previous winters. My toes were still cold when I got home.

If I can channel some of the days when Jodi and I swam with an air temp in the 30's and a water temp of 51° today would feel almost tropical.   


I sure is beautiful here this time of the year.

I texted Tom for his guess at the water temp. This is his report;

My toes are telling me 57. Sue and I did a full loop around CPP. I did not see even a hint of red funk, so that was really good. Sue managed to get the port authority barge that was out at the end of the Cal poly pier to blow off their siren to get her away from the barge! It was a little over the top in my opinion. They could've just waved her away. 

I'll swim at 7 on Thursday.

niel

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Sunday, October 23rd, 2022

 At 10:30 Avila Beach was sunny with surprisingly little wind. There had been much more wind in SLO. The ari temperature was 63° and still rising. It was blowing out to the west somewhere because there was a chop on the water from the SW. The water temperature was 59° but felt more comfortable than under cloudy skies. Niel and David swam a couple of big triangles which let us try eight different water conditions.  The chop was not large enough to slap me around and mess with my stroke but the current was strong enough to require a persistent correction into the push.    
In some places the water still has a reddish tinge. The wind seems to have pushed all of yesterday's loose floating kelp on to the beach.
I'll be back on Tuesday at 7 AM. It's kinda dark but the sunrises have been beautiful and I have a mid-day meeting and want to get my swim in.


niel

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Saturday, October 22nd, 2022

The Poly Pier Another Way -

It looked and felt like June Gloom today; all gray with 58° air, 59° water, no wind, glassy with a swell out of the south, pesky blobs of kelp in the water and still some red tinge to the color.
I got in at 7:40 and swam over to the end of the CPP and back.  



Nice and smooth.

I'll swim at 11 tomorrow. Hopefully it will be sunny by mid-day. 

niel




Thursday, October 20, 2022

Thursday, October 20th, 2022

 
   The start of the First Annual Avila Sharkfest 1 and 2K swims on Sunday, October 16th. They had 74 swimmers for both distances. Dave Horning is thinking of adding a 4K (2K X 2) next year. 

I got to Avila after an early meeting and got in at 9 AM. It was 62° and sunny with a light wind. The surf was like it always is and the water was 59°. There were still some areas of red tide which is odd for this time of the year but fits with the odd fog and overcast in October and the odd rain.  I swam the loop out to the end of the CPP and past the reef buoy.

Other than the red spots the swimming was beautiful. 
Spring and fall have the best weather.

As I was leaving I stopped and spoke to Tom at his car. He will be in the Bay Area this weekend for a full immersion water polo experience that doesn't involve getting wet. He and his polo team buds will hang out and attend several east coast vs west coast polo meets.

I'll be back Saturday morning at 8 and Sunday at 11.

niel  


Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Tuesday, October 18th, 2022

There was patchy fog in San Luis Obispo but Avila Beach was nice and clear with a slight offshore breeze. There wasn't any frost on the pumpkins but with an air temperature of 51° it definitly felt like fall. The water was colder as well at 14°C/57°F. I did an over to, down and back of the Cal Poly Pier.  I got in just before 7:00.


There were some nice clouds and contrails as the sun was coming up over Shell Beach.

I forgot to include this picture of Sylvia Glenn in Sunday's post about the Avila Sharkfest swim.  Sylvia swam with the Avila Dolphins for many years and taught me a lot of what I know about open water swimming. She has been swimming at Avila Beach since the 1960's (maybe the 50's?) and is still showing up!

 Tom's Report - 
Beautiful conditions today! Clear blue skies, glassy calm water. Another excellent October day of swimming. 

I'll get in on Thursday between 8:30 and 9.

niel 

Sunday, October 16, 2022

Sunday, October 16th, 2022

Tom swam around Avila Rock this morning. Conditions looked to be just like Saturday. 

I was at the beach at 7 to set up the Surfrider tent and promote clean water at the First Annual Avila Sharkfest Swim.
About 80 swimmers took part. It was great to see an event of this type at Avila Beach.
I saw a whole list of Dolphins; Big Steve, Sylvia Glenn, Dale McVay, Doug Parrish, Peter Kelley, Tom Israel and more.
That was it for me today.

I'll swim on Tuesday morning at 7.


niel  

Saturday, October 15, 2022

Saturday, October 15th, 2022

I'm back in the water 12 days after having my right meniscus repaired and it was so nice to swim. It felt like I'd been out a long time and it was nice to find out that everything still works.

It was overcast, gray and spitty but there was no fog. The air temperature was 58° and the water was 59°. There was no wind. Two weeks was long enough for me to loose my comfy factor with the water so even at 59° and gray it took some getting used to. I'd say it felt like 57° - 58°.  We'll see what Tom's toes have to say. I got in at about 7:25 and didn't see him or his car when I got out at 8:45.  I did have a seal cruising back and forth along the surf line where I got in to welcome me back.  The water was flat and clean except for some muddyness near the creek mouth. In this light I'm not sure if it was red tide or something else.   


Me at the reef buoy on the way back to my starting point with a  
strange difference in the exposure in the two photos.  

I will be at Avila at 7 tomorrow to set up and man the Surfrider pop up information booth at the Inaugural Avila Beach Sharkfest 1 and 2 K swims. I'll bring my stuff but I'm not sure that I'll be up for swimming after. I might be out of gas after several hours of standing and talking to people or getting in the water at 11 might be just wonderful.

niel        

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Thursday, October 13th, 2022

 Today's Swim Report By Tom -

I swam the second shift today – getting in at 10:15.  Clear blue sky, scattered clouds, and that beautiful air clarity that comes with fall. The water temperature was up a bit, around 59 today. There is a slight breeze and lots of bump on the water. I am convinced that the Avila pier repairs are having an effect on water quality… Not in a good way. But, of course, I have no way of knowing that for sure. Anyway, excellent day of swimming.

Thanks Tom

On Tuesday Dr. Laird reactivated me so I (sort of) ran yesterday and will swim on Saturday morning at 8! 
It is good to be back and to not let Tom have all of the water fun to himself.

niel     

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Tuesday, October 11th, 2022

 Today's Swim Report From Tom - 

Felt like late November at Avila today. Thick marine layer, drizzly wet, Beautiful clear and clean water, and excellent swimming. As it has been since Niel has been out, it was just me, my pelican friends, and whatever underwater wildlife was out and about.  My toes fingers and teeth tell me the water temperature was between 56 and 57.  Another excellent morning swim to get the day started. 

Thank Tom 

The water temp over at the port is 57.5. Sure feels like fall.
I've been out of the water for 9 days and it has been 7 days since my surgery. My knee and I are doing really well. I have my post op appointment today and should come away with dates to begin running and swimming.  I hope Tom doesn't use up all of the good conditions before I get there.   


niel

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Sunday, October 9th, 2022

 Tom's Avila Swim Report for Sunday, October 9th -


What can I say, the conditions were almost identical to Thursday again… 
Thick marine layer, glassy and calm water.
When I got in at 915, it 58° air temperature, 58° water temperature.  Beautiful swimming. 


Thanks Tom

Friday, October 7, 2022

Friday, October 7th, 2022

 A Friday Swim Report by Tom - 

The conditions were almost identical to Thursday...

... until the fog rolled in and I was suddenly in a white out. Luckily, I was pretty close to the Avila Pier and navigated accordingly. Then, within the space of about 10 minutes the sun burned through and there was clear blue sky, then, another 10 minutes and I was back in the white out. Crazy day. Nevertheless, the water was beautiful and the swimming was excellent. Can't swim on Saturday due to Water Polo 🤽‍♂️ commitments, but will be back Sunday. 

Thanks Tom


As for me, 3 days post surgery I'm doing great. Very little pain and the expected swelling but I'm getting about in a almost normal manner. I have my post-op appointment Tuesday. We'll talk about how soon I should be running and swimming.  I'll not be swimming until the incisions are completely healed so I may be running before getting back in the water. 

niel 

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Thursday, October 6th, 2022

 Swim Report By Tom -

Dingdong, the funk is gone! Hopefully, at least until next year. Excellent swimming conditions today at Avila. Solid marine layer when I got here at 9:15, water was glassy and calm. Three to four foot wave Rolling in and an estimated water temp of 58. My pelican friends were all stationed perfectly equal distance apart out on the end of the pier as they like to do. Great start to the day.


Thanks Tom

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Tuesday, October 4th, 2022

 Swim Report by Tom:

Tom's swim report: it was a beautiful fall day at Avila. Blue skies, a crisp light breeze that added a slight bump on the water. Air temp was around 60 when I got in at 915, and the water was about 58. Right along the break of the waves there was still some light funk remaining, but out beyond the buoys was nice and clean. All in all, a good day of swimming. 

Thanks Tom

As for me I spent from 11 o'clock to 12 in surgery having two (What!?) tears in my right meniscus repaired.  Dr. Laird found one that didn't show in the imaging.
Anyway, I nodded off right after I transfered from the gurney to the operating table and woke up in recovery. The staff was great. I've a bit of a sore throat that will be gone tomorrow and almost no post-op pain. There will be more discomfort tomorrow once the happy stuff they leave in the incisions wears off but past experience (yes, this is repair #2 on the right, 2018 and now 2022 only one on the left in 2006) will be no worse than a skinned knee from the school yard. Keeping it elevated and using ice for alternate hours.  No fun until after my post-op visit next Tuesday. No swimming until the incisions are completely healed, as an infection in the knee would be very dumb, embarrassing and could result in a knee replacement. 

I ll see how I'm feeling and may come Sunday to hang out. 

niel 

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Sunday, October 2nd, 2022

Today, right on schedule, we had fall conditions. AT 10:30 the air temperature was 60°, it was overcast with a light breeze out of the NW and a small wind chop from the SW. The water temperature was 59° and there were some patches of reddish brown water, but the majority of the ocean was nice and clean and beautiful to swim in. 
Swimming today were Niel, David and Tim. Tim and his family were visiting from the bay area. He usually swims at the Aquatic Park in San Francisco and he was looking to get in the ocean while he was here. I had been looking for a day to go around Avila Rock and today was going to be it. David had never been out to the rock and he was up for a bit of an adventure. Tim was comfortable staying along the buoy line. There was a bait ball way out there in line with the middle of the buoy line that didn't concern us. There were also a couple of big orange triangle buoys that marked the course for a regatta. In order to stay well away from the boats we decided to head to the rock from the end of the buoy line instead of the end of the pier which would keep us tighter in to the shore.     
We got in, turned left at the first buoy and met up at the 4th buoy. Tim headed back along the buoy line and David and I headed to Avila Rock.  2/3's of the way to the rock the wind had driven the bait ball almost too us. Fortunately it was behind us and we continued to the rock without needing to work around it. 

Tim, Niel and David at the forth buoy

David and Niel with Avila Rock in the background. 

The tide was high and it is late in the season so there was much less kepl to swim through near the rock.  The chop was just enough to make it feel real like the ocean but not enough to be bothersome.

Tom swam this morning. The water was nice and clean enough that he could see a seal looping under him. 
It was just a seal, right Tom?

I'm going to have the meniscus in my right knee trimmed up on Tuesday so I'll be beached for about two weeks until the incisions are completely healed.  I'll post whatever swim reports are sent to me while I'm in drydock. 

niel