Open Water Swimming UK 2019

The last few days have made a huge difference. Our place went from 13 on Saturday morning to 18 last night. It certainly wasn’t 18 everywhere with some warmer and colder patches around the lap but positively balmy by comparison.

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Inter web said it was 18 degrees and I got all excited dreaming about a non-wetsuit 400m mini-loop.

Was it frig!
More like 15-16.

Still, swam a lovely 1.9km in an easy 31:38.

Really enjoying swimming at the lake.

Second OWS of the year. Salford Watersports centre, sign said 16C but consensus was around 14-15. Anyone able to confirm its an accurate 500m lap? 910 consistently got it around 450m each time but times would suggest its further.

I was supposed to be doing a 3.8k swim in Ullswater on Sunday but have asked to be dropped down to the 1 mile, I just can’t see me managing ~68 minutes in there before I’d get out. It’s at the far end where the Helvellyn tri is and I reckon it will be barely 13-14c, far too cold for me.

Bit annoying as it was going to be a useful tester before Hamburg.


I did the Great North Swimrun Sprint in Windermere over the weekend. Temp was 14.2C and felt ok even though I was in a shorty wetsuit. It felt colder in a local lido which was apparently same temp. I think race day adrenaline helps!

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Yeah but @jeffb is a whimp in the cold :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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Ha, I don’t deny it GB, especially when swimming or cycling!

Not sure why after living oop north all my life :joy:



Last yearI didn’t do any OWS that wasn’t in the sea, either UK or Portugal. In the years before that I swam at Mychett Quays a fair bit which I enjoyed.

There is a lake at Eastleigh, near Southampton Airport (I think it’s called Lakeside) run by HOWL sports. It’s a pretty nice set up, change rooms, showers and a big gazebo for keeping you bags covered. It’s only 400mtrs though but I liked it, much to the horror of my neighbour that thought I’d get mugged, stabbed or cut my leg on an abandoned shopping trolley. :laughing:

Just swam for 20 mins in Frensham pond. Fook it was cold. Drove home in my wetsuit!

Not as cold as say 10 or 11 degrees as per celtman / norseman. Garmin says it was 14 degrees

Was going to pop down to Jesus Green Lido in Cambridge over lunch, to test the AlpKit Terrapin wetsuit I’ve got on their try before you buy scheme. Seems there was some sort of incident last/over night and they’re shut until further notice. So guess I’ll be going to Milton Country Park tomorrow evening instead. If the wetsuit fits, I might sign up for the 5KM at the Great East Swim on the 22nd…

Well…because the majority of the people on the M6 and M1 can’t drive in the rain and rear end each other; I didn’t pass the lake until 7pm tonight after the drive home. And it was mildly moist. So I gave it a miss.
:beers:is much nicer for it


I have found a couple of lakes (mere’s) closer to my house than the paid for lake (which is very nice, to be honest)
Means I can swim early doors, or when I want.
But…what do you do with your bag/car key?

I would be totally solo, like a hike (if I don’t text you back at certain time, call the rescue squad), but that’s just like a bike ride/run if you fall off descending, or collapse due to the heat.

Basic safety measures seems obvious - bright cap, let someone know where you are going and for how long.
What are those inflatable things you tie around your waist called - with the neon buoy type thing you drag around? I can’t seem to find them on the google…

Tow floats, some are also dry bags so can take your car keys and maybe some flipflops and a small towel


Check if the lakes allow swimming, many don’t, legally (in England) it is trespass if they don’t, but all they can do is ask you to leave.

Also look for navigable rivers - swimming is allowed in those. I was in St Ives (Cambridgeshire) this week on business so went for a dip in the Great Ouse.

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They allow it - Hatchmere and Pickmere. They both have reviews on TripAdvisort.
The latter is super close and whilst the signs say no swimming, the parish council have confirmed you can swim there (according to the OWS Society website)
The former has actual signs and markers out, permanently.

So long as the lakes are on public land and you don’t trespass to enter them, you are okay.

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Just hide your car keys somewhere in the undergrowth. Make sure you can find them again…

I’ve swum in Pickmere a few times, there’s a little sandy beach to start from at the village end just to the left of centre, and you can walk down to it through the field so can leave your shoes in the car. Mornings are best as motor boats are banned before 10am (or thereabouts)

Planet X were selling off swim tow buoys cheap the other day btw

Unless you drive a Renault Scenic, then you know, not the end of the world…:grin:


Cheers r0bh.
I’ve walked the dog there a fair few times, he likes jumping off the jetty halfway round :rofl:
I was aiming to swim at 6am ish, so the car park won’t be full at all and was just going to walk down the normal path, past the new estate.

I’ll have a look at PX now

If you go into the field from the car park, past the Turton Pavilion and down to where the orange and green canoes/boats are that’s the best starting place.

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Nice one, I’ll have a look at that :smiley: