So we got our first big roll over last week. No big surprise. We always get a roll about this time of year. It went from a very comfortable 63F/17C to 56F/13C… in one day!
It may seem a bit counter-intuitive, but it is not the sun, or lack thereof, that makes the water colder… it is the wind. You see the sun warms the surface water across the lake. But if the wind comes from the north, then it pushes all that warm surface water over to the Rochester side of the lake… and the water over there is pushed to the bottom of the lake… which, in turn, pushes that cold water at the bottom of the lake up on the Oakville side. Conversely a south wind pushes the warm surface water over to Oakville. So cheer for south winds!
On the upside, that cold water that we have in Oakville is pure, clean, fresh water that was 500 feet down at the bottom of the Lake only a few hours ago… so it is very clean. Which is nice to know, especially when you are hearing that other beaches in Toronto are being closed because of e coli. That’s because the water doesn’t circulate well there. But it does on LOST Beach!
Having said that… we still had about 95 swimmers out last week! Largest of the season so far! It does help when the weather is nice and you can get out and it is nice and warm.
And while we are on the subject of cold water. One of my favorite quotes is “cold is a function of time”. Meaning that, how long you spend in the water determines the relative coldness of the water. 15C/60F is not bad. If you are going in for 15 minutes, or 30 minutes or so. But if you are in it for 12 hours (which is how long I was in water of that temp while swimming the English Channel… without a wetsuit, of course!), then 60F can be dangerously cold.
This was born out when a bunch of LOSTies swam at the North Shore Challenge on Sunday. The water was 12C/52F. That’s cold. Not crazy cold, but almost. I dropped down from the 3.8k to the 1k (I actually won it?!), not sure what my time was, but 10-15 minutes was about all I could handle (even in a sleeveless wetsuit!). Without the right training, which I haven’t been doing, the 3.8k (around 50-55 minutes) would be too cold. And 2 1/2 hours to do a 10k was completely out of the picture!
I was happy to see that there were a bunch of LOSTies there… and that they were by far and away the most well trained for cold water… and therefore had the brains and experience in cold water to know when to pull the plug. Lots of DNF’s that day. Which is a good thing when the water is too cold.
LOSTie of the Week: Craig
Where do you start? Craig is one of those guys that you just immediately smile at. Why? Because he’s that guy that looks at you in the eye and introduces himself. You always feel like you belong when Craig is around. I was super stoked when I got an email suggesting he be a LOSTIE of the week. He’s that guy. That guy that is welcoming – offers advice when he see’s someone can benefit from his knowledge of running, swimming, and high altitude training. He is also modest as heck … he was a national caliber varsity swimmer back in his university days, he holds multiple records in Ice Swimming from racing in 0c water. He is also 2x Lost Mile Champ and well … read below on his new quest.
How long have you been a LOSTie? Since 2015.
What are you training for in 2019/2020?
Nothing yet! I’m hoping to make it to the LOST race this summer to do my favorite race: the LOST Mile!! I’m also planning a triumphant return to Masters swimming in 2020 to take on the 40-44 year old age group. I love the 100m freestyle!
Best thing about OWS?
Definitely the people who do it. It would be hard to find a more outgoing, and interesting group of people anywhere.
Does anything scare you about OWS?
I have an irrational fear of swimming into rebar when the lake is wavy and murky. OUCH!
Anything you want to work on?
I want to work on my running to become competitive in the new and emerging sport of SwimRun. Also, I try to recruit retired competitive swimmers to give OWS a go. It is much more interesting than the pool swimming they burnt out on years ago!
Any advice for newbies?
Wear earplugs. You won’t get dizzy in the lake. Also, come for the swim, but stay for the coffee at BEAN THERE.
What’s your thing?
I’m a swimmer! I started as a kid and never stopped!
Some “epic stuff” you have completed?
- Ice swimming in Lake Memphramegog
- Summited Mt. Rainier with Amy
- 2 x LOST Mile champ.
- LOST Beer Mile (not champ)
- 2017 Sudbury SwimRun champ
Thanks for being a LOSTie Craig, and being a part of making LOST what it is today!
Rob & Kat
PS drop Kat an email if you know someone, (including you!) who would make a good LOTW! firstname.lastname@example.org