Sunday, August 20, 2023

Sunday, August 20th, 2023


The Best of the Summer at Avila Beach -

The water temperature is holding at 61°. The water is getting a little murky and red/brown in spots but even at 11AM it was still flat and glassy.  There were pelicans and guls diving on bait fish on both sides of the pier.

Christopher joined me today for his first try at ocean swimming. We went down and back along the buoys on the right side of the pier. He enjoyed himself and I think we will see more of him. 
I swam from the first buoy to the Poly Pier, went out to the end of the pier and looped around to the end of the Avila Pier.  

Tom L. said Hi as we were getting ready to get in. He had just gotten out and was a happy camper. 

8/20/23 is the 20th anniversary of Debora Franzen's fatal encounter with a white shark while swimming at Avila Beach.

I will be on the road and not swimming until next Tuesday.  😞


Saturday, August 19, 2023

Saturday, August 19th, 2023


It was a beautiful morning in Avila Beach today. Swimming at 7 were Paula, Avery, Eline, Jodi, Niel and Terra. It was Terra's first time with us. She is doing the Santa Barbara tri in a few weeks and wanted to get in some open water time.
It was about 55° when we got in and 75° when we got out and very comfy at the showers.  The water was 61°, smooth and glassy with some occasional 4'+ waves. The water felt very comfortable when we were getting in. 

Terra wanted to do a mile so we started out with a 1,550M triangle. She went in at that point and after some discussion the rest of us swam the 1,000M directly to the end of the Cal Poly Pier. We came back in along the pier to the second crossbars, turned east towards an anchored sail boat to avoid the kelp and the otters that were closer inshore, turned left at the boat and swam back to our starting point. 

Tom L. says that he saw whales near Avila Rock when he was swimming yesterday morning.
Lucky guy.
I'll swim tomorrow at 11.


Thursday, August 17, 2023

Thursday, August 17th, 2023


After a week away I was back in the water this morning and it was great to be swimming at Avila again. The water temp was 61°, the air was 62°, the water was glassy and flat so the swimming was easy. 

Swimming down to the point and back to the other end of the buoy line seemed like the thing to do. It was short of my usual distance but it was what felt right this morning.

 I plan on being back on Saturday at 7 and Sunday at 11.


Thursday, August 10, 2023

Thursday, August 10th, 2023

The same gray, flat great swimming conditions this morning. I work up early, felt energized and got to Avila at 6:30 so I got started early.  With no wind and a 59° air temperature it was nice. The 58° water did not feel like almost 60°, more like the mid 50's.  The waves were their usual small selves except for a set of two 6 foot sneakers.     

There was a lot of house cleaning going on in my head and heading from the end of the CPP towards the reef buoy I was actually on course for the Avila Rock. If I had not passed close by the marker buoy for the end of the discharge line for the Avila treatment plant I might have made it to the rock before I got corrected.

I'm going to have to miss a few swims but I'll probably be back Saturday at 7 and Sunday at 11. 


Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Tuesday, August 8th, 2023


It has gotten a bit busy around here. I did swim Tuesday AM and am just now getting around to posting. 

Tuesday morning featured heavy overcast, no wind, 59° and 58° water. Tom and I agree that the water swims more like 56°. Afterwards I was feeling the cold more than I should have. It must be the fog factor, the lack of sun and light making the water feel colder. 

I did a relaxing couple of triangles with a finish our and around the pier.

I'm swimming tomorrow at 7.


Sunday, August 6, 2023

Sunday, August 6th, 2023

Summer's Back -
Just as easily as it slipped away last week summer came back today. With no explanation, the water temperature was back up to 59°. Avila Beach was sunny, 70°- 75°, with little wind and clean flat water with a bit of a swell. The swimming conditions were wonderful.  
I saw Tom L. along Front Street. He had just gotten out and said that it was sweet out there. 
Our group was Tom I., Jamie, myself and Dave. Dave is a surfer and a pool swimmer and this would be his first ocean swim. 

The four of us swam to the #4 buoy on the east side and to the end of the Avila Pier. Jamie and Tom swam to the end of the Poly Pier while Dave and I swam in to the #1 buoy on the west side. Dave continued in from there and I swam over to the third crossbars on the CPP in time to meet up with Jamie and Tom. We swam back to the end of the CPP, over to the end of the Avila Pier and in to the beach.  It was so nice out there nobody wanted to get out. 

Dave and Niel at the end of the Avila Pier.
The water really did look this nice today. 

Jamie, some of Niel's toes and Tom before Jamie and Tom swam over to the end of the CPP.   

At the second crossbars. Tom pulling by on my right and 
you can just see Jamie's orange cap in the background.

Tom was swimming over near the dog beach yesterday and stepped on a stingray.  He said that it was one of the most painful experienced he has ever had. He had to get out of the water. He has a knot on the top of his foot from the sting but seems to be feeling OK. 
I'm going to hang up my winter wetsuit for a second time and swim on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings this week at 7 and next Sunday at 11.


Thursday, August 3, 2023

Thursday, August 3rd, 2023

 Winter Returns To Avila Beach -

I'm grateful to Tom Lorish for texting me a heads up yesterday about his Wednesday swim. He said that his toes told him the water temperature was 54°. This was hard to believe but Tom's Toes are pretty well calibrated. Forewarned, I wimped out and this morning came in my full winter swimming gear and was very glad. The water was 12°C/53.6°F according to my thermometer, toes, hands and face. A decent shock to my feet, hands and face getting in and just plain cold after that. Eight degrees is an unpresented drop over the four days since last 
Sunday.  Make me wonder if we are going to see any more 60's until some time in 2024.

Sunday, 62°, Tuesday, 58°, Wednesday, 54°, Thursday, 54°  

The Avila Pier is in the middle of this frame with a giant dragon on the left, or maybe it is some kind of shark jaw at my shoulder. 

It is fun the way the accidental framing of the previous photo 
allowed me to see the bumpers on the Poly Pier in a new way.

Other than the water temp the conditions were great and
very relaxing once I was sufficiently numbed up. 

Could it be even colder on Saturday morning?

I'll know at about 7:05 that morning.


Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Tuesday, August 1st, 2023

The sharky signs are still up since Saturdays confirmed sighting of two sharks at Pirates Cove.  

I did the Yo-Yo on the west side. There are two yachts anchored in line with the routes from the number 4 and 3 buoys to the end of the Avila Pier so a bit of swerving is necessary.  

I was cold while swimming. I was cold last night too so I wasn't sure if it was me or the water. 
At the end of the Avila Pier I read 14.5°C/58.1°F.  That is enough of that. I hope we are back to proper summer water temperatures on Thursday.

Otherwise, conditions were the mostly the same as they have been; flat water, small surf, no wind, an air temp of 57° when I got in. The only change was the overcast that was thick enough to have it almost drizzling.  Everything was wet when I got out. 

I'll get in at 7 on Thursday.