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pwb
August 23rd, 2011, 12:25 PM
Start tracking the water temperatures here -- http://www.surf-forecast.com/breaks/La-Jolla-Cove/seatemp -- and get excited for America's premier rough water swim, http://www.ljrws.com/. This is an all ages blast of an event.

Who's going?

Who's doing the Gatorman?

Who's doing the Daily Double?

I'll be there and wimping out with the mile only; this will be my 6th year doing the mile. I attempted the daily double in both 2008 and 2010 and will try that again in 2012.

Tips for maximum enjoyment:


Spend $100 to become a century sponsor for the event (supports the kids event) and get front row seats and a super-sweet parking pass.
Arrive on Saturday so you can check in and get a practice swim in.

Hoping for warmer conditions this year than last.

jkormanik
August 23rd, 2011, 12:30 PM
I'm registered for the Daily Double. I haven't yet made my travel arrangements, however. The budget is looking TIGHT, but I hope to be there!

sbegonia
August 23rd, 2011, 12:48 PM
I'm signed up for the mile. It'll be my 3rd year and very, very excited that it's poised to be much warmer than last year (brrrr....). I actually dreamt about it last night! The week before La Jolla, I'll be doing the Maui 'Aumakua swim. Very excited about both.
:bliss:
Gatorman is a lifetime goal for me - I think I can do the distance but not sure I can withstand the cold... Even at low 70's (2 yrs ago), I was shivering at the end. I have very little insulation. Last year was hellacious for me.

RobbieD
August 23rd, 2011, 01:43 PM
I'm signed up for the Gatorman since I can't make it to Big Shoulders this year... pretty stoked to give this swim a go!

pwb
August 23rd, 2011, 02:28 PM
I'm signed up for the mile. It'll be my 3rd year and very, very excited that it's poised to be much warmer than last year (brrrr....). I actually dreamt about it last night! The week before La Jolla, I'll be doing the Maui 'Aumakua swim. Very excited about both. Very cool. The Maui swim is on my bucket list.


Gatorman is a lifetime goal for me - I think I can do the distance but not sure I can withstand the cold... Even at low 70's (2 yrs ago), I was shivering at the end. I have very little insulation. Last year was hellacious for me.Last year was horrible. It took me well over an hour after the Gatorman sitting in the sunshine with three top layers (t-shirt, long-sleeve shirt, hoodie) to warm up again. If it does end up being cold again this year for some reason, I highly recommend wearing a neoprene cap with ear plugs. That made it somewhat more bearable (at least for the mile) last year.

yedswim
August 25th, 2011, 02:45 PM
I am very green in OWS, I plan on swimming the Gatorman this year. I did the Newport Beach Pier to Pier early this summer (my first race) and I felt like I had "gas in the tank" left for a longer race.

I am also monitoring the see temperatures...but I am afraid that the temperature in surf websites is not very accurate, sea temperatures can vary a lot during the day. La Jolla had a range between 62-69 during the past few days:

http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/show_plot.php?station=ljac1&meas=wtmp&uom=E&time_diff=-7&time_label=PDT

Luckily the Gatorman is at 1:30 when the water could be the highest of the day.

orca1946
August 29th, 2011, 03:11 PM
After reading this - I need to get a better nick name !:bolt:

pwb
August 29th, 2011, 08:07 PM
The temperature peaked around 72 degrees today in the cove -- http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/show_plot.php?station=ljac1&meas=wtmp&uom=E&time_diff=-7&time_label=PDT -- so we'll hopefully have ideal water conditions.

All you east-coasters sick of the mean Atlantic, get you a ticket for an aeroplane (you might still have time for a fast train) and come swim in the wondrous Pacific. As an added incentive to fly, we even have power coming out of our wall sockets in the wild west.

Day of registration is available -- www.ljrws.com (http://www.ljrws.com)

Kurt Dickson
August 29th, 2011, 10:36 PM
Last year was horrible. It took me well over an hour after the Gatorman sitting in the sunshine with three top layers (t-shirt, long-sleeve shirt, hoodie) to warm up again. If it does end up being cold again this year for some reason, I highly recommend wearing a neoprene cap with ear plugs.

I clearly need to bulk you up...maybe take you to smashburger or something. If you are a fatarse like myself, the cold has never been noticeble.

I'm doing daily double and likely getting thrashed by people with magical open water skills..definitely consistently my crappiest open water swim...cannot beat the Ghiradelli hot fudge sundaes (downtown San Diego) of which I had five in one weekend last year.

Maui is nice...not a big fan of the swim unless you like to go for a 12 foot dive after swimming 2 miles all out (you get a minute off your time if you go through the arch which I did not even see until I was well past and probably could not have done anyway):)

knelson
August 30th, 2011, 12:28 AM
Maui is nice...not a big fan of the swim unless you like to go for a 12 foot dive after swimming 2 miles all out (you get a minute off your time if you go through the arch which I did not even see until I was well past and probably could not have done anyway):)

Cool, it sort of like swimming's equivalent of the steeplechase!

Thrashing Slug
August 30th, 2011, 07:21 PM
The temperature peaked around 72 degrees today in the cove --

Where is the temperature buoy? There's no way it could be 72 degrees out over the canyon.

I really wish they would schedule this swim a week earlier. If it were the last weekend of summer vacation instead of the first weekend after the kids go back to school, then I could do it.

sbegonia
August 30th, 2011, 08:30 PM
The temperature peaked around 72 degrees today in the cove -- http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/show_plot.php?station=ljac1&meas=wtmp&uom=E&time_diff=-7&time_label=PDT -- so we'll hopefully have ideal water conditions.


I'm always amazed at the daily temperature range - I guess it has to do with the tides... but 12 degrees within a 24-hr period?! I hope the temperature during the swim is closer to the high end of the range.

yedswim
August 30th, 2011, 11:21 PM
Where is the temperature buoy? There's no way it could be 72 degrees out over the canyon.

I really wish they would schedule this swim a week earlier. If it were the last weekend of summer vacation instead of the first weekend after the kids go back to school, then I could do it.

I tried to figure that out a few weeks ago and I concluded that this station is not on a buoy but on the Scripps pier. That station does not list the water depth and the coordinates point to the Scripps Institute.

yedswim
August 31st, 2011, 01:43 AM
I'm always amazed at the daily temperature range - I guess it has to do with the tides... but 12 degrees within a 24-hr period?! I hope the temperature during the swim is closer to the high end of the range.

For some reason that station has a huge temperature range, much higher than others in the area. My best guess is that is due to the underwater canyon present there.

If you look at the bathymetric map (attached here) you can see that there are 2 arms in the canyon (the upper being closer to the pier and the lower roughly in the middle) also you can see that there is a huge "underwater funnel" as you go into deeper ocean.

My theory is that with the rising tide the cold water (at the bottom) is pushed through the funnel into the arms and eventually closer to the surface lowering the temperature.

splacke
September 4th, 2011, 08:43 PM
Try the Oceanside Pier Swim which happens every Labor Day. It is a true rough water. No kelp to swim through only large waves.

cheetah
September 8th, 2011, 10:30 PM
I am doing the Gatorman this weekend. Does anybody know whats the best grease to use?
Thanks.

sbegonia
September 9th, 2011, 12:01 PM
uh oh...

http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Local-Beaches-Closed-Due-to-Sewage-Spills-129528448.html

Only a couple of miles north of the cove. I hope the current moves the crap north.

sbegonia
September 9th, 2011, 12:12 PM
Ok, according to swellwatch, looking promising that it will flow up in this case before dispersing. :D

And looks like we'll have calm conditions for Sunday

yedswim
September 9th, 2011, 12:35 PM
uh oh...

http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Local-Beaches-Closed-Due-to-Sewage-Spills-129528448.html

Only a couple of miles north of the cove. I hope the current moves the crap north.

not good....the main current is southbound. I hope see life and currents are able to dissolve 3.2 million gallons in 2 days.

E=H2O
September 9th, 2011, 12:56 PM
I am doing the Gatorman this weekend. Does anybody know whats the best grease to use?
Thanks.

For something of that distance I would use simple vaseline on the places where skin rubs together: under the arms, around the neck & between the thighs. However, no mater what you use, this is definitely what you should use to get it off:

Gator Grease (http://www.solvent-systems.com/solvent/html/Grease_Gator_Aqueous_Cleaning_Solution.htm)

cheetah
September 9th, 2011, 09:13 PM
Thanks for the info.

hannahb
September 10th, 2011, 05:39 PM
Hi Everyone,

I am new to the forums and fairly new to Open Water swimming.

I have a question about the start line for the La Jolla Rough Water Swim. I know its a chipped event, but i've always been a little confused about where the official Start Line is....does anyone know? It must be buried?

Also, what does everyone think about strategy for the start? Get up front and be with the fast folks, and risk being pummeled and out paced? Or, hang back to have a more mellow start, but risk being stuck behind folks that pace slower than you?

Thanks guys :)

Thrashing Slug
September 12th, 2011, 11:49 AM
So how was it? You lucky bastards.

:bump:

pwb
September 12th, 2011, 12:57 PM
So how was it?Awesome, awesome day.


The land weather was picture perfect -- sun, blue skies, 70ish degree air temp.
The water wasn't quite as clear as in years past, but much clearer than Saturday during pre-race warmup swims.
Temperature was still on the nippy 65 degree side, though it felt warmer away from the cove.
The waves were neither a positive (e.g., no surf into the shore) nor a negative factor this year ...
... but the "rough" part was made up in spades by some major kelp/seaweed forests. I assume the Gator-people swam through it, as well, but about 150 yds on either side of the 2nd buoy of the 1 mile course there were huge patches of it. There was really no way to go around it, you just had to claw your way through it. This was my 6th year and by far the kelpiest-seaweediest of the years. It was more like an obstacle course going through that portion, but fun nonetheless.
As always, the crew running the event, the safety folks, the cheerleaders with energy bars and electrolyte drinks afterwards, the party atmosphere was awesome.
To top off a great event, they had an awesome vendor there with fish tacos instead of the typical burgers and hot dogs for post-race nutrition.
... now, if only the city of La Jolla, so rich with likely property tax and sales tax revenue could renovate their bathrooms, this already awesome event could be one notch better!

knelson
September 12th, 2011, 01:03 PM
... now, if only the city of La Jolla, so rich with likely property tax and sales tax revenue could renovate their bathrooms, this already awesome event could be one notch better!

Definitely lots of taxes coming in, but keep in mind La Jolla is NOT an independent city--it's part of San Diego.

yedswim
September 12th, 2011, 02:52 PM
What a great day...everything was perfect except the kelp, I was able to drag myself over it on the way to the pier but returning from it..wow!..it drained all my energy. Also it was a bit choppy returning from the pier.

sbegonia
September 12th, 2011, 03:55 PM
I had a great time. Kelp Forest was a challenge - I heard a few "ughs" while going through it and it definitely sapped my energy and took a lot of effort crawling over and looking forward more for any openings. Kelp was definitely the topic du jour everywhere. The winning time for Masters Women was 23:13, which is pretty slow espcially considering how flat the water was, no doubt due to the kelp. And pwb, you failed to mention that you won the mile race!

So in my 3 years of LJRWS:
Year 1 (2009): The Year of Huge Surf
Year 2 (2010): The Year of Freezing Water
Year 3 (2011): The Year of Kelp Forest

I love how it's never the same race twice! Open water is FUN! :agree:

knelson
September 12th, 2011, 07:09 PM
I love how it's never the same race twice!

Forrest Gump would say it's like a box of chocolates.

Thrashing Slug
September 12th, 2011, 08:05 PM
Year 1 (2009): The Year of Huge Surf
Year 2 (2010): The Year of Freezing Water
Year 3 (2011): The Year of Kelp Forest

Maybe the year I finally get to do it will include all three :) Although I would gladly do without the freezing water.

Kelp forests are spooky to swim through. The last time I was in La Jolla there was monster kelp. I hallucinated all kinds of shadowy creatures lurking down below.. and that was during a short 1-mile leisure swim, with wetsuit. All of my non-wetsuit swims in the cove have been fairly kelp-free, so I can only imagine what it would feel like to have to claw your way through without the sensory barrier of a rubber suit.

sbegonia
September 12th, 2011, 09:31 PM
I find it curious that particiation has dropped significantly for the last few years, esp from 2009 to 2011. Some are daily double entrants so hard to say what the total number of individuals might be, but here's how it breaks down:

Year: 1-mile Men/1-mile Women/Gatormen

2007: 614/437/493
2008: 551/375/487
2009: 566/416/491
2010: 458/311/225
2011: 404/263/285

I find it even more strange since open water swimming and triathlons have become much more popular in recent years. What's going on?! :dunno:

pwb
September 12th, 2011, 10:29 PM
I find it curious that particiation has dropped significantly for the last few years, esp from 2009 to 2011. Some are daily double entrants so hard to say what the total number of individuals might be, but here's how it breaks down:

Year: 1-mile Men/1-mile Women/Gatormen

2007: 614/437/493
2008: 551/375/487
2009: 566/416/491
2010: 458/311/225
2011: 404/263/285

I find it even more strange since open water swimming and triathlons have become much more popular in recent years. What's going on?! :dunno:The last 2 years have been dramatically colder than the previous years. That's my bet.

pwb
September 12th, 2011, 10:34 PM
Gatorman start -- Gatorman start - YouTube

Gatorman finish Top 3 - Gatorman Finish Top 3 - YouTube


They ended up awarding Kostich, who comes in 3rd in the video, the win, but I couldn't quite understand the rationale that the announcer stated. He said it had something to do with registration, but I didn't catch his rationale. I'd have DQ'd the two guys at the lead for wearing leggings.

knelson
September 12th, 2011, 11:22 PM
Strange finish for sure. Not only with the two guys wearing leggings, but also the swimmer the lifeguards are assisting who damn near gets right in the way of the lead swimmers.

chowsh
September 17th, 2011, 04:20 PM
hey everyone! pwb is being modest and hasn't mentioned--he won the whole shebang in the 1 mi! way to go patrick!:applaud: