Swim Report – January 29, 2012 – Deep Freeze

The general consensus of this morning was that it was one of the coldest – if not the coldest – swim outing we’ve had since we’ve been doing this…

By the time we arrived at MSW, the west wind had picked up considerably, bringing with it some snow flurries to add to the fun.  Nick had measured the lake temperature before we showed up, and the official reading came in at a bone-cracking 32.5F.  We were already mostly suited up, so we quickly donned our gloves and hoods and trotted out to the ladder since our hands were already getting numb – and we hadn’t even gotten in the water yet!

I climbed down first and got in right away – and it was a pretty rude awakening.  The water temperature was about even with the air, and we had that nasty west wind in our face right from the start of the swim.  So I just buried my face in the icy waters and pounded out swim strokes.

Nick and Mike blazed past me, and I caught up with them by the lighthouse.  I shot a quick video and stuffed my camera down the front of my wetsuit – which let in a torrent of very unwelcome 32F water.   We all turned back, and – being the slowest of the three – I got to watch from a distance as Nick and Mike finished up and absconded the chilly lake in favor of their warm cars.

I finally made it to the ladder and snapped off a few more shots before trudging back to the parking lot.  Once there, the deep freeze really set in as the wind intensified to a hearty gust that blasted us non-stop as we changed out of our neoprene in the unprotected parking lot.

Nevertheless, we survived the ordeal and bested the lake once again.  And I’ll take a half-mile in this hell over a boring pool workout any day of the year!

Chilly morning

Nick and Mike pre-swim

The view from the ladder at water level

The author post-swim

Today’s video!

2 Comments

  1. Daniel Davis
    February 3, 2012

    Hey guys what are the swim laws there in lake michigan?
    I am starting to train for my first 70.3 and want to get in there asap
    can i start in april or may ?
    will a xterra wet suit vector 3 be fine ? help me

    • Steve
      February 5, 2012

      Hi Daniel. We’ve found it’s best to swim in a group, and preferably with fellow swimmers with lifeguard certifications. That’s what we do, and so far we haven’t had any problems swimming year round. You should be fine with a regular triathlon fullsuit. We use these now – the only things we add are gloves, hoods, and booties!


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