View RSS Feed

Chicken's Nuggets

A Clayton's Season

Rate this Entry
2011 was a strange open water season for me.

I knocked back a chance at doing the Memphremagog and the Ederle swims, pinning all my hopes on Catalina. Catalina didn't work out this time, and as a result I've been moping and thinking 2011 was a complete failure.

Not so!!!!

After much delving I've been able to dig up some wonderful memories of my 2011 aquatic season including an unconventional marathon swim or two. My memories are a little fuzzy, 2011 already being about seven times the length of a conventional year (2011, the Dog Year?), but here goes.

After floating around in the 50-odd degree lake for most of June, I headed east to Maine to celebrate the nuptuals of KGirl and swim the 2.4 mile Nubble Light Challenge. The Nubble swim was first done in 2010 and was apparently very cold indeed. I was quite nervous going into the swim but on the day the water was 65 and smooth. It was wonderful! I loved swimming around the headland between the mainland and the lighthouse I'd only ever seen before as a non-swimmer tourist. I think I ate 7 lobster rolls on the weekend I was there and had a really fabulous weekend. Can't wait to go back!

Here's a photo of the Nubble course



and a picture of the lighthouse:



The remainder of July and August were uneventful. Lake Michigan was very very warm in 2011 and I spent those months at Promontory Point in high 70's water. Very strange for the lake. I even developed a rash.....

On 1st September I swam what was to be my first and only "marathon" swim of 2011 (and calling it that is really pushing the definition).

I drove to Promontory Point at the devil squealing hours of the morning and swam a mile in the dark. A mile at Promontory is one loop to the pier and back to the ladders. I was the joined by the usual 6am Point swimmers group and we did another mile. The sun was now up and I did a few more mile loops, feeding at the ladder and lurking around the 2nd buoy to see if I could find the watch I'd dropped down there two weeks prior. I got out a few times at the ladder to take some photos and play a few moves at Words with Friends, just to keep from getting too bored

The water was pretty calm until about mile 9-10, when it developed the disorganized, washing machine type chop that we're pretty used to at the Point. I felt pretty good until mile 12. I was joined by Vivebene, thank goodness, because mile 12 felt rotten. Miles 13 and 14 felt great though. I called it quits after 14 loops because I was kind of bored and needed to go to the toilet. So that was it, I guess. THe water was 78 degrees when I began in the dark and possibly a little warmer when I finished.

Here's the Point, as it usually looks:



A week later I did a 15k yard workout in the pool and felt surprisingly good.

Two weeks later I returned to the Point. Back pain defeated me that day and I drove back to the 'burbs after 8 miles. I took some Advil and finished another 8 miles in the pool for a total of 16 miles. At least the lake was 65 degrees that day so, aside from back pain, I was able to enjoy the water!

Three days later I swam Big Shoulders and didn't come in as slowly as expected. It was probably one of my most enjoyable Big Shoulders, as the water was 65 and quite smooth. I've finally identified the building to sight off on the second leg of the triangle. Better late than never.

Here's a photo me with some of the 6am Promontory Point swimmers who left our little south-side sanctuary to swim in the race:



Late July/early August saw an unexpected trip home for a family funeral
While I was there I did some swimming at the Entrance Baths, a 50m sea water pool cut out of the rock platform at the end of The Entrance Beach (just north of Sydney). I was also able to swim off the beach at Toowoon Bay, where my nephews and niece do nippers. Such a beautiful place, it was more like snorkeling than swimming! I lurked around the area where the blue grouper supposedly frequented, but didn't see him. The people at the surf club might have been pulling my leg about that one! The surf lifesavers in this photo were practicing rescues with their zodiacs the day I swam.



Although I didn't have time to swim, I was able to go for a quick visit to my place of origin, Freshwater Beach. This is where I was hatched and where I'd like to be flung after I die. I suppose I should be cremated first.



My last swimming experience before leaving Oz was a paddle at the famous Bondi Beach and then 1000m at Bondi Icebergs club. I paid $6 to swim in the 59 degree water (watched by a row of crabs on the pool deck) and then had a sauna. The weather couldn't have been better. There was practically no surf and I could see someone swimming across and back between the headlands just inside where I assume the nets were. I wasn't brave enough for that




Aside from the Catalina crewing adventure and attempted swim, that's it for 2011!

2011: the season you have when you're not having a season. Bring on 2012, please!

Submit "A Clayton's Season" to Digg Submit "A Clayton's Season" to del.icio.us Submit "A Clayton's Season" to StumbleUpon Submit "A Clayton's Season" to Google

Updated December 4th, 2011 at 09:09 PM by Chicken of the Sea (I accidentally wrote "site" instead of "sight". Highly embarrassing!)

Categories
Uncategorized

Comments

  1. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    I completely forgot to include the little swims I did when I was in Australia in August!!!!!! revisions coming soon
  2. chowmi's Avatar
    Totally awesome post, and the pictures are great!! Make sure to post pix of Austrailia in August post! PS which one is you in the last pix?
  3. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    I'm in the Navy suit with the cap sticking out. Fresh out of the water. Note the others already dried and dressed hehehe
  4. The Fortress's Avatar
    You are an indomitable force! I suspect 2012 will beat 2011 in all respects. Please consider coming for a Zones reunion even though it has nothing to do with marathon swimming!
  5. swimsuit addict's Avatar
    Those are beautiful pics! Makes me want to try Nubble. Here's to an awesome 2012 for you! Maybe you'll come back to NYC sometime?
  6. rxleakem's Avatar
    Nubble is such a great lighthouse to admire, although I usually get lost trying to find it! Congrats on the varied OW season - the best is yet to come ...
  7. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by swimsuit addict
    Those are beautiful pics! Makes me want to try Nubble. Here's to an awesome 2012 for you! Maybe you'll come back to NYC sometime?
    Can't wait to go back to NY! I was going to apply for Ederle but noticed that the race is early next year (strange) and the signup is soon. Have no idea who I'd put as crew and as usual the NYC Swim crew policy is discriminatory against people who have to travel.

    Maybe a leg of the 8 Bridges would be the way to go....
  8. gigi's Avatar
    I'd say you had a spectacular swimming year! Just spectacular! Nice pics too!
  9. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    You are an indomitable force! I suspect 2012 will beat 2011 in all respects. Please consider coming for a Zones reunion even though it has nothing to do with marathon swimming!
    I would LOVE to come to Colony Zones, and can make anything look like a marathon swim
  10. ViveBene's Avatar
    You did so much in the season that was not a season!
    Eight Bridges is a swim with a difference. And 2012 will be one smashing success after another!
  11. dc_in_sf's Avatar
    I wonder how many folk reading this post know what "Claytons" is :-)

    Sadly the only version of the commercial I could find on YouTube is an out take : [nomedia="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3yvqHRA6r4"]Funny video - Jack Thompson Claytons TV commercial outtake 1979 blooper - YouTube[/nomedia]
  12. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    I looked and looked and couldn't find it anywhere either! All I wanted was the line.."the drink you have when you're not having a drink"
    the outtake is funny!