Ya Gotta Get Out to the Sea

Screen Shot 2017-07-21 at 8.48.23 PMSome inexplicable 10-15 degree shift in the water temps occurred this week, making the open water swimming conditions ideal for this weekend. The image of the buoy reading from this evening says it all. On top of that, based on this morning’s swim, the water is the clearest it’s been all summer. Hope to see everyone out there Sat and Sun.

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City Splash and Sightings!

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I hope everyone enjoyed the water and weekend. Two exciting swim developments. First, mark your calendar for City Splash, July 18, 2017 – Get info & register. It’s a great way to support continued efforts to keep the Charles clean and build further support to have a permanent swimming hole in our great downtown Boston.

The other exciting development was the first white friend sighting around noon yesterday on the S. Shore, off Minot Light, courtesy of Maria Osborne who shared photos with Sharktivity. If you don’t already have the sharktivity app, it’s a fun and worthwhile one from Atlanticwhiteshark.org. The conservation efforts to protect these great creatures is paying off. While their close presence may play mind games while we’re in the water, the benefit they have to the ecosystem in immeasurable. Here are a couple of screen shots form the app.

 

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Best-Seats-in-the-House Giveaway for Sunday Boston Sporting Event

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Now’s your chance to get the best seat in the house to a premier Boston sporting event this Sunday. Being on the sideline for the Patriots or behind home plate for the Red Sox doesn’t compare to being on the water at the start of the Cohasset Triathlon in a paddle board of kayak. A few slots are available for anyone interested in volunteering to be on the water Sunday from 6:30 am until the last swimmer exits the water. The forecast is for a perfect day with clear skies, warm weather and calm but chilling waters.  If you’re interested and available email me at tom_k_baker@mac.com and I’ll get you the details.

Otherwise, the regular swim from Nantasket Beach is still on from the same place at the same time, 8am. As a word of parking caution the DCR is now enforcing parking even if you arrive prior to 8am. The fee is $60 for an annual pass to all parks or you can pay $10 per day. Given the incredible resource DCR is to our state, it’s a worthy cause to support. You can order online through Reserve America.

Take care and keep enjoying the ocean.

Get your weekday sunrise swim on & XTERRA Wetsuit Discounts!

IMG_3313No better way to start the midweek workday off than a sunrise swim, especially with the heat we’ve been having. To get a sense of conditions ahead of time, like if you are waking up when I do at 4:45 on account of toddler-induced insomnia, check out this link to NOAA’s  Boston harbor buoy BHBM3 for water temp that correlates closely to Nantasket and other South Shore beaches and this link to NOAA’s Station 4401 will tell you wind and wave data.

With the exception of a few very brave water souls, I recommend a sleeveless wetsuit to take the bite out of the cold or a full suit for keeping your whole body warm.  Crusty Barnacles now get their own discount so email me if your’e thinking about it and I’ll share the code.  From personal experience, they make the best and most mobile shoulders in full suits and for strong swimmers that want no shoulder restrictions, their Volt sleeveless is by far the best option out there (pictured above). We also have discounts for their surfing wetsuits (also the best by far from personal experience).

Enjoy and hopefully I’ll see some of you out in the ocean during the week.

Tom

PS – To John, who I met in the nantasket lot at 6:15 am on Tue., I hope you come out and start swimming again. There’s a whole different world that exists at Sunrise so keep it up.

95 Reasons to Get into the Ocean this Weekend

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Reasons 1-94 are chalked up Sunday’s forecast. Reason 95 is because it’s so much darn fun. Same time, 8:00 am, and place, start of Nantasket. It should be calm and clear for anyone wanting to get acclimated to the ocean ahead of Triathlon season. And if there are any takers for early bird swims Sat or Sun, I’ll see you there at 6:30 both days.

Modest but Strong Group Last Weekend

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A modest yet strong group of 9 people made it out. Admittedly the water could still warm up a bit. Here’s a fun photo of four of the brave swimmers.

Same time (8am) and place (Nantasket) this Sunday weather permitting as rain is in the forecast.

And, I would love to know who plans to swim in the various swim events around the region or beyond this summer. No reason we should’ve have a calendar of what’s happening. Feel free to post in the comments or email me directly.

Get inspired ahead of Memorial Day swim


 Diana Nyad’s podcast last week by Outside Magazine is an inspirational interview about persistence and pursuing your dream through open water swimming.

Don’t forget about next Sunday’s swim at 8:00 am. Major correction from the last post is that the swim is at Nantasket Beach, not Nantucket (I blame autospell for the error).

See you next week, weather and conditions permitting.

Put May 28th on the Calendar

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Time to scrape off the crusty barnacles, dried seaweed and sea salt still clinging to your goggles from when you last swam in the ocean this past Fall. Hopefully everyone enjoyed the winter, but it’s time to break free from the pool and get back in the open water.

May 28th, the Sunday before Memorial day, is the best day to kick off the season at 8:00 am from the usual location at the start of Nantucket Beach. If anyone wants to join an early bird swim or get out on the Sat or Monday of the holiday weekend, send me an email or let me know in a comment below.

Water temps are finally creeping up. In a few weeks it will feel like a hot tub for Kimberlee, Ted and Chris and it will be very comfortable in a wetsuit for the rest of us mortals as the waters will no longer be anything like the nor’easter surf pictured above. In the meantime, enjoy the technicolor-green tree leaves all this wonderful rain is gifting us.

3 Crusty Barnacles compete at Marshfield/Duxbury Tri, Jul 31, 2016

Susan McGinnis, Trish Berube & Vic Lanzillotti hit the waters this morning around 7:30 at Duxbury beach.  The run out and back along the beach became adventurous as the tide rolled in and the hard packed sand disappeared and we were running in water or up along the slippery rocks.

Each CBer had a unique division placement, all good for some cocktail party banter – perhaps.

Trish ended 4th in her division. Yeah Trish!  Had she not stopped for a glass of wine in Transition 1, she would have medalled.  Not pictured below cos she left early to go walk her dog.

Susan took the gold for not only 1st in her division, but also for last!  (Now…how  is this so?  Think about it.)

Sue Marshfield

Susan & Vic

Sue Vic Marshfield

Vic, ignominiously borrowing Susan’s medal for achieving last in his over 40+ division.

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A fun, flat and very  pretty race!

Full Moon Sunrise Swim

Conditions were ideal this morning for an impromptu swim, where you could catch the full moon setting to the west and a bright orange sun rising from the east at 5:25 am. At least five showed up (three pictured below in a photo captured by Solly).  Enjoy the week and if you can, try to take in a sunrise swim at some point during the week this summer – best way to start the day.

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Perfect weekend to…

swim of course. Why not start your days bringing your body temp down so you remain cool? The ocean temps have consistently dropped each night to create a little bite upon entry but it feels perfect after a few strokes. And the water is clear as can be with at least 15 ft visibility this morning. Chris Kennedy can give a better answer as I noticed him swimming what looked to be in the direction of Gloucester this morning and was probably in at least 50-100 ft depth of water.

As a reminder there is a small early bird group around 6:30 am both days, and definitely the regular group start Sunday at 8am. Bring a friend to introduce them to ocean swimming and you’ll both either get a free cap or get to hear Vic recant his story about his Olympic gold medal coaching session this week.

By the way, whoever has the caps, you’ll have to bring them or we’ll have no option but to have Vic’s undivided attention.

Mattapoisett Tri, Sunday July 10

Fun time at the Mattapoisett sprint Tri this week.   Three CBs entered and finished the race, with both Missey and Trish lapping and beating Vic and his entire age group.

Water temps were 71 degrees!  Missey took 1st in her age group.

Mark Keup, owner of Nor’easter Surf Shop, was there. He also  medaled.  We all went to breakfast afterward at a local diner.

Fortunately, T-storm forecasts were wrong.  It was overcast and hence a perfect event day.

As pictured, Vic got center podium for ignominiously taking a Left turn out of the transition area for the run stage.  The rest of the field had rightly gone Right.

We all agreed that Missey needs a new Tri outfit — perhaps with logo endorsement patches. Her current outfit is too stodgy.

Also, we also agreed Vic needs a new bike.  So does Trish!

Next year, same event!

Missey & George’s Post Cohasset Tri Brunch, June 26

Here are some photos from another great Sunday brunch at Missey’s.  George did another great job preparing some wonderful eats and great Sangria, the latter of which ran out way too early.

Missey showing off her incorrect tattoo number, suggesting a whole new meaning of fashion  for “X-out.”  She likely will break her endorsement contract with Building 19.IMG_0866Mags and Trish, smiling sis-tahs in constant Tri training.  (Notice Patrick in background with a beer, still recovering from his rope-swing-Tarzan-imitation-attempt, which resulted in an accident and surgery.  Tarzan.  Really.)

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“Up against the wall, everybody!”  The new stone wall below was specifically designed for such events.  Not pictured, Diane, who was working the iPhone.  (Photo Property of Lady Di Kennedy Productions, Limited – very!)

Special details:  Richard Alemian, now understanding why we do Tri’s — the After Party! Patrick with beer bottle, again.  Missey showing her X’d-Out number — Triple AAA rating, at heart. Rachel donning what is now pre-Yoga class apparel we must all add to our wardrobes (yes, she has a whole new line).  Susan McGinnis, glowing from having medalled in her age group.  George muttering to himself, “Will they ever leave?”IMG_0868.JPG

Susan McGinnis, number 993 and medalist.  (Vic the has-been, wearing a previous year CohTri T-shirt.  It’s all about the T-shirt, isn’t it?)

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Susan doing the push-up squeeze to show us how well intellectually endowed she is! She applied her tattoo number on her left arm — upside down!  Yes, 366!  Go figure.  (She’s on her way to a halfway house before long. One of us has to let her know.)

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CONGRATS to all you finishers!

 

Swim Caps and Sunday June 26

For those not participating in a triathlon on Sun (which is also a lot of fun) and will insted be swimming, Crusty Barnacle swim caps from last summer will be available first come first serve. I just looked and saw the water temp is above 65 for the first time this year, so it’ll be perfect. I’ll be an observer but will be happy to take the group photo and send everyone off.

The last few months we’ve received questions in the general email box which I apologize I am only now opening up for the first time in more than six months. To answer some of your questions, there is not registration and swimmers of all abilities are welcome unless your name is Vic in which case, that’s just unique circumstance that we’ll have to handle accordingly. As a reminder, the meeting place is the first beach entrance in Hull off of Nantasket Ave (Route 228) – take a right after the bait shop and you will see a crumbling and condemned restaurant called Beach Fire.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Ideal conditions for the weekend

If you can make it, get on out for a swim sat and sun. Early bird at 6:15/6:30 am and regular group swim at 8:00 am. Water well above 60 with calm clear waters both days. And if you can’t make the weekends, there is a growing number coming out early during the week. Photos from the past few weeks will be posted soon so stay tuned

Memorial Day 2016 Weekend Swims

Regular swims this weekend will begin at 8:00 am to avoid the holiday weekend crowds – may need to arrive a little bit earlier to sneak threw the parking although there are new parking meters this year. If anyone is interested in an early bird swim, feel free to arrive at around 6:00 am each day starting Saturday for what will likely be a smaller crowd. The water temps are close to 60 so we’re getting a bit of a warm current just in time. The jackets and caps from the first swims of the year as shown in the spirited photos below can hopefully remain at home until October. Enjoy the weekend and see you out there.

 

Early Start to Season

Crusty Barnacles are getting off to an early start to the season this Sunday, April 24 – the meet time is 8-8:30 at the same usual location at the entrance to Nantasket Beach (1st parking lot entrance on right off 228). It may only be a dip, but for those more ambitious swim folk, bring your thick skin, cold blood, or wetsuit depending on your tolerance for what could potentially be less than tropical water temps. Oh, and don’t forget goggles, towel, coffee and conversant humor – seriously.

 

Oct 11 Fall Swim

Swim forecast for this Sunday is calling for glassy calm and seasonably warm waters at just below 60 with a ton of sun. Wetsuits optional. meeting at 7:45 at the beginning of Nantasket for an ideal Fall swim. Gotta enjoy the precious few weekend swim days left this year. See you tomorrow. Tom

Weekend Swims

Due to weather expected for Sunday morning, Sat will be your best chance to get out this weekend. We finally have warm waters to enjoy. For those of you participating in a bike ride or triathlon this weekend, have fun and be safe.

June 20 & 21 Swims

Given the forecast for Sunday, for anyone interested in ensuring they can get a swim in under nice conditions, tomorrow (sat) at 7:45 is the safest bet. The buoy is reading 59.2 degrees, which is the warmest it’s been all year and the water should be fairly calm. And if you can’t make it tomorrow, see you Sunday.

It’s been a while since we’ve shared photos, so here’s a compilation from earlier swims when the water was much colder. It’s much much warmer so don’t let the wetsuits be of concern.

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Fu Onset Swim

Memorial Day Weekend Swims

For this weekend, we’re returning to the normal time, 7:45 am, leaving from the same location with a few earlier risers getting out at around 6:00am. As a reminder, all abilities welcome as are bagels, donuts, and coffee.

If anyone is concerned about the water quality, check out the story in the Globe this morning on the water quality of our area beaches surpassing the cleanliness of Waikiki and South Beach. (http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/05/22/new-report-gives-boston-area-beaches-high-marks/AWIKRsliRr6Wfnpu3obHaJ/story.html#). While I still don’t see Nantasket Beach becoming a destination for Spring Breakers anytime soon, congratulations to Save the Harbor for all their efforts.

Season is Starting May 10

A few swimmers braved the waters last weekend, but we’re officially kicking off the season on Mother’s Day. Given likely competing commitments, come anytime that works best from 7-9:00 am. Water is still a bit chilly, so come prepared. Several caps are still left over from last season if anyone needs one. Just let me know. Take care, Tom

Stay tuned…

…for more information on upcoming swims. For all of those who didn’t brave the freezing conditions this Winter such as myself, we’re within weeks of returning to the water. May 2nd or 9th is looking like a good possibility to kick off the 2015 season.

Weekend Swims for Aug 23 & 24

Hopefully everyone has been enjoying the clear albeit persistently brisk waters.

On Sat., Aug 23, for anyone who is interested, we’ll be meeting at 7:00 am at Black Rock Beach, which is at the end of Forrest Ave where it intersects Jerusalem. Let me know if you are interested. There are a two options. One is to swim from Black Rock to the beach below St. Joseph’s retreat and back (1.75 miles round trip) or Black Rock to Sandy Beach and back (3 miles round trip).

For sunday, it’s the usual swim, only due to popular demand, we’re going to move the swim up by 30 minutes leaving at 7:30 am instead of the usual 8:00.

Enjoy the week.

Weekday Swims

Weekday swims are back. The water is well above 60 as of today and perfect conditions are in the forecast for next several days. No set times, but a small # of swimmers have been showing up between 5:00 and 6:00 am every day of the week. Here’s the screenshot of the readings from the Boston buoy! Look at water temp 2/3 of the way down…

 

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Memorial Day Swims and Beyond

Memorial day weekend swims are upon us. Sunday we’ll be meeting at the same time and place and Monday we’ll meet at 7:30, to avoid the crows and to make sure we have enough time to get off to our other Memorial Day festivities. Monday is supposed to be a beautiful, warm and clear day. I know it’s hard to believe but the waters really are warming up and getting quite comfortable.

Importantly, save the date for the James Doty One Mile Memorial Swim on Sat. June 14 from the L Street Bath House.

As many of you know, Jim is an iconic swim figure for the Boston area who was instrumental in restarting the Boston Light Swim and in forming the New England Marathon Swimming Association (NEMSA). 

Preregister online for only $10!  The first 30 registrants are guaranteed an event shirt. Signup here: https://ultrasignup.com/register.aspx?did=28089. For more information: http://bostonlightswim.org/james-doty-memorial-mile-swim/

 

Jim Doty Memorial Swim

Swim Season Official Under Way

Great turnout on a day when the ocean was maybe 50 degrees. I apologize for predicting it to be 55 degrees. Needless to say it stung more than a bit upon entry to the water. Once we were in however, there was a smooth oncoming swell that enticed just a few of us to body surf and frolic about in the waves. And best of all the clouds parted for a beautiful morning as we returned to shore. It was really a pleasure seeing everyone back at it again and the pictures below say it all.

Same time (Sunday 8:00 am) and place (first entrance to Nantasket Beach) next week.  More details to follow on the Memorial Day Swim, but given the likely parking issues that morning, the expected beach crowds and the many other commitments and BBQs we may have, we plan to meet at 7:30 am (which means well be in the water just before 8am). Enjoy the week.

Opening Day Crew

Opening Day Crew

Ted's pre-swim ritual

Ted’s pre-swim ritual: Applying glide on his good luck towel

Can we back out?

Can we back out?

I can do this I can do this

I can do this I can do this

Yoga Stretches

I almost have that pesky zipper in my hand

Sun. May 18 is Get Back in the Cold Ocean for a Brisk Open Water Swim Day

The ocean temp is nearing 50 degrees, which means it is time to get back in the water, or time to congratulate those of you who never got out (Helen, Ted, and others).

While I’m sure there will be swimmers out at Nantasket starting this Sunday at 8am (all are welcome), the regular swims are returning Sunday, May 18, at 8:00 from the same place in Nantasket Beach. If you need directions or have questions, feel free to email me. It’s been an exceedingly long and cold winter so it’ll feel good to get out of the pool and back to the expansive Mass. Bay.

More details will be forthcoming on the memorial day swim…

Enjoy the weekend.

2013 Barnacle Splash

As expected, cold yet clear and calm waters for the Barnacle Splash. A tremendous thanks goes out to the kayakers, shuttle drivers, and Hull’s famous restaurant Toast, which served up hot and tasty post-swim breakfast. For your enjoyment, here are some of the photos of the pre- and post-swim entertainment. If you have photos you’d like to share, send them along and I’ll add to the post. And if you missed the swim this past weekend, there are still plenty of remaining swims between now and Thanksgiving each Sunday (and most Saturdays for that matter).

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Vic’s infamous random shot

Group Photo Serious.tiff

The whole group

Trust me this time.tiff

Trust me this time, I know what I’m talking about

Pre Swim Warm Up

Stretch them muscles

More warm up.tiff

The shark’s mouth was this large

conspiring.tiff

Why are we doing this again?

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I swear to Crusty, I did not inhale

Sunrise

Swim route at dawn – what lurks below?

That was fun, what is next?.tiff

That was fun, what is next?

Gonna walk the rest of the way.tiff

The swim was tiring, I’m just going to walk the rest of the way.

Pep talk.tiff

If I have to go back into those cold waters one more time…

My my houlder hurts after that swim.tiff

I deserve a shoulder massage after this swim

Lets do that again.tiff

Let’s do that again!

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That was noth’n.

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I will not blink first

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Larry, Moe and Curly of swimming?

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My job here is done

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I’m not feeling so well

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Grandpa stealing a moment with grandson

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What every self-respecting annual swim needs, bright red shoes with checkered flag laces. But do you know who this famous person is?

Annual Barnacle Splash Sun. Aug 18

This Sunday will mark the 3rd Annual Barnacle Splash Swim starting at 7:00 AM. This year we’ll be swimming from the usual starting spot at the entrance to Nantasket heading south east along the rocky coast, out and around Doctor Island, and into Black Rock Beach in Cohasset. This is 1.5 miles. If you’re winded, in need of food, or suffering from caffeine withdraw, we’ll have a car bringing people back. If however you want to continue, you can turn around and swim back, which makes the route a nice 3 miles. The tide is perfect for the swim and conditions as of now appear to be ideal.

This will be a supported swim with kayakers or paddlers along the route guiding the way and keeping an eye out for the south shore’s own indigenous venomous jumping lobsters that are starting to cause havoc on the traps. One was spotter swimming with goggles and a speedo taunting beach-goers just last weekend. Go figure?

Importantly, breakfast will be ordered. If you plan to swim, send an email to swim@crustybarnacles.com and let us know if your bfast preference is eggs, pancakes or french toast. Our friends at Toast (the restaurant) have offered to deliver. Also, Barnacle Splash Swim Caps, made up for just this occasion, have arrived. They’ll be available on Sun. for a nominal fee.

For those interested in swimming during the week, people are swimming from the usual start location at around 5:30 as the sun is rising later. Also, there have been requests for afternoon swims. If you are interested, email me at the CB address as I’m happy to put you in touch with others looking to swim. It’s always more fun in a group.

Enjoy the photos from our swim last weekend and see everyone this weekend. By the way, we’ll still be swimming Sat., with groups starting as early as 6:30 am. Random Shot Aug 11 2013 Group Photo 08.11.13

Weekend swims for July 27&28

If the rain this week has kept you confined to the indoors all week, there is no better release than a swim in the ocean. The weather is expected to clear and the water remains relatively warm for this time of year.

On Sunday July 28th, we’re going to try something a little different – we’ll be starting at the same time, 8am, but further North along Nantasket by the bath house which is about one mile from our usual starting spot. From there we can swim toward Point Allerton. The bath house has showers so this could come in handy. To get there you make a right turn just after the Nantasket Beach Resort and drive along the section that has the parallel parking spaces. Go toward the end and you’ll see the brick bath house and swimmers in speedos.

For Sat., we will meet at the usual place with swimmers showing up as early as 6:30am.

Weekday Swims @ Nantasket

There seems to be quite the interest in the morning weekday swims based on recent turnout.

From now until the it starts getting light later, you’ll most likely be assured of seeing other swimmers out and about in the ocean starting at 5:15 am all days of the week. However, Wed. and Fri. be designated as the days to make a concerted effort to get out there. Note that weekday swims are mostly but not entirely all business with no photos so that we can all get our days started.

If you haven’t tried an early morning weekday ocean swim, I can personally guarantee you there is no better way to begin the morning. Being in the water as the sun is rising over the horizon is pretty special and is something to really take advantage of during the summer.

July 4 wknd review & Aug. 18 Save the Date

Sunday’s swim was perfect for concluding the holiday weekend – we had perfect conditions all four days. As usual, we had many familiar faces, but we also had some new swimmers along with drop-ins from former regulars who now reside from as nearby as Pittsburgh and as far as Paris. The random photo as seen below never gets old and our model Ted looks good in the new Crusty Barnacle hoody that he wasn’t afraid to don in the hot sun. If you placed an order for one, contact Steve to make arrangements to pick it up and if you still would like one, given the demand a second order will be going in soon.

Random Shot July 7 2013 Hoodie Model

 

 

 

 

 

 
Looking ahead, it’s time to start planning the 3rd Annual Barnacle Bash Swim, which will be held Sun. Aug. 18th this year starting at 7:00 am. Mark your calendar, as we’re doing a few things different this year to make it a bit more entertaining. First there will be two options, swimming from Nantasket to Black Rock Beach going around Doctor Island (about 1.75 miles) or Nantasket to Sandy Beach (about 3 miles). We’ll have transportation back to Nantasket from both locations along with food and drinks to re-fuel after the swim. The 7am start time is to ensure we’re finished before parking or lifeguard restrictions go into effect.

Also, if anyone is interested in early morning weekday swims starting at around 5:30 am, there will likely be a group of people throughout the week greeting the sunrise. Email tom_k_baker@mac.com if you are interested so we can make arrangements.

Lastly, be on the lookout for some future changes of venue as we will occasionally be taking the sunday swims on the road.

In the meantime, enjoy the week…

 

 

 

 

 

 

4th of July Weekend Swims…

As a reminder, we’re planning to swim yet again this Sun. at the usual time, 8am, and place, beginning of Nantasket in Hull.

There have been requests to explore the Southern Coast of Hull. For those interested, we’re planning a swim to Gunrock Breach, which is 1/2 mile from where we enter the water. It’ll be low tide so we’ll have to swim a bit further than normal to get beyond the rocks. For anyone with a bit more ambition who hasn’t already worn themselves out from the long holiday weekend, the alternate swim on Sunday will be to the Beach beneath Green Hill (the cove just before Black Rock), which is 1 mile from where we enter the water or 2 miles roundtrip.

If we get enough people confirming the swim on Sun and if you let us know which beach you plan to swim to, we can make arrangements for food or coffee at one or both beaches to give you the extra boost needed for the return swim. Anyone with a paddle board or kayak that is interested in an early morning paddle, we always appreciate the company and the escort, not to mention an extra lookout for sleek pointy fins. Based on this morning’s swim, the water is crisp and clear, not too hot and almost not too cold.

Also, there will be swimmers heading out Sat. morning from the same location leaving anywhere from 7-8am to accommodate everyone’s early weekend schedule and obligations.

Lastly and based on popular demand, a complimentary crusty barnacle exclusive open water swim clinic will be held tomorrow, Friday, at 7:30 am at Sandy Beach in Cohasset for anybody that has the day off or who may not have the day off but is deciding to take the day off anyhow.

Take care and enjoy your 4th of July celebrations.

PS – if you ordered a CB hoodie, they’ve arrived. Contact Steve G about getting yours in time for the break of the heat spell. They came out really nice. If you would like one and didn’t order one, it’s not too late, just let us know.

 

Pectoraldate.com for all you shark lovers

Courtesy of Wild Swimming New England (the greatest and most eloquently written swim blog in the Northeast), there is a potentially very useful website that tracks some of our largest friends of the sea, Ocearch Interactive Global Shark Tracker.

Here you can meet Mary Lee, Genie, and Lydia, who just joined in March after being tagged off the coast of Cape Cod, are just a few of the prospects you can find living in our area.

In all seriousness, I recommend you read today’s post on Wild Swimming about using common sense when out in the ocean and what we can expect from our pectoral finned friends this summer. Enjoy.

Memorial Day Weekend Swims & New CB Post-Swim Gear

We’ll be swimming this weekend at the usual time and place, 8am at the entrance of Nantasket Beach on Sun. The ocean continues to warm up and should be pushing 60 degrees, which means it’s almost time to give up those wetsuits, booties and gloves if you haven’t already. Given the holiday on Monday, we’ll once again be meeting at the same time and place for the annual memorial day swim, which could involve a new course heading southeast toward Cohasset. Feel free to invite your friends who appreciate the open water or any fellow athletes looking to get ready for the upcoming triathlon season.  Coffee, donuts and 12-month fresh bagels will be on hand both days. And for those looking to get out on Saturday, it’s not uncommon for a few swimmers to informally get together at 7:00 am also at the same location to get in a quick swim before the weekend starts.

As far as CB gear goes, we have several complimentary swim caps and 2012 bumper stickers still available on a first come first serve basis which were left over from last season. And through the inspiration and effort of Dr. Golden and Kimberly, the first and limited edition Crusty Barnacle hoodies are now available for order (see the mockup below). The pricing hasn’t been finalized, but they will likely be around $60. If you are interested, please let Steve Golden know how many and what size you’d like by emailing him at sgolden@healthcaresouth.com. I can’t think of a better way to warm up immediately following a dip in the brisk waters off of Hull.

See you this weekend.

SweatShirtfront_w_CB_logo Sweatshirt_back_w_CB_logo

Season underway May 19 officially following impromtu swim this morning

Guest blog today from Vic sans the photos (which are available upon request by email)…

All, Winter is over!.  After consulting with the founding fathers, distaff power brokers and other aquatic cognoscenti, it has been determined that the Crusty Barnacles season officially starts a week from today, Sunday, May 19th.  Objective is to be in the water at 8am, get there 15-20 minutes early!

Logo laden Merchandise.   Steve Golden has been busy the last few months doing the research for having hoodie sweatshirts designed and ordered for the group.   It will be zip up, high quality fleece material, with the logo front and back that is on the orange swim cap — the logo Kimberlee designed. Outlay will probably be around $45, give or take a few bucks, based on quantities we order.  If, repeat “if,” you are interested in this idea and think you would probably order one, please let Steve Golden know at sgolden@hcsouth.com.
Don’t Reply All or we’ll clog one another’s emails in box.

BetaTest at Nantucket this morning.   Steve G, Chris K, Vic and Kimberlee tested the ocean this morning at 8am.The ocean passed the test.  Waters are still wet, waves are real, and Vic is still the first in and first out of the water.   Water temps are swinging from 54 to 65 these days, really!  Today’s temp was on the low end of the range.

Today, the boys were all in full gear, surfer caps and booties.  Kimberlee, the photographer today, and not pictured, wore only a bathing suit in low 50s water!  Unbelievable!   In time for this email I did not get a release from Kimberlee for the photos I did take of her coming out of the waters this morning, but believe me.  She was color coordinated with pinks, blues and chartreuse bathing suit and matching goggles.  THIS WILL BE A HIGH FASHION SEASON.  The bar has been set.

Chris Kennedy and Steve Golder.  Check out Chris!  He’s been in the gym all winter.

Steve Golden, sporting a WWII fighter pilot look.  Fashion!  I’m telling you.  It’s the new CB theme.

I really went in — believe me!  I have three witnesses.

See you Sunday, May 19th.

Thank Your Swim Coach Today

For those who have participated in a swim club as a masters, recreational, or competitive swimmer, you can appreciate the impact swim coaches can have on our lives. They come in all forms, from hard-nosed, to humorous, to quiet, to loud, but most importantly, they all are at the center of a small community of people who share a passion for swimming. And in the rare instance, you get a coach (or two) that create the perfect environment for the team they happen to coach.

I want to acknowledge and thank Candy and Andy Noble for having achieved this perfect balance and creating the close community of swimmers at the Weymouth Club over the past 13 years. On a personal level, as I was making plans to move to the Northeast from the West Coast more than four years ago, I recall an email exchange with Candy, who through her enthusiasm, told me all about the local swim and triathlon scene and invited to come to a workout once I got to town. I also vividly recall the first swim practice, where the other swimmers could not have been more welcoming. Aside from a couple of swimmers who moved out of town, every one I met on that first day remained apart of this close-knit team.

The workouts were also “smart.”  Having been a member of four masters swim teams from NY, to SF to San Diego, and most recently in Weymouth, and having swam as a guest in at least a dozen more across the country, I can tell you Andy and Candy created the most efficient workouts as far as maintaining one’s swim condition, speed and endurance. Importantly, they did so in an environment that was not too serious and mixed in the right amount of fun. For full transparency, I like to out-touch whoever’s next meet as much as the next person, but at the age of 39, I won’t be winning any Olympic qualifying events anytime soon, nor have I competed in a competitive event in more years than I can remember. But what is important to me at this age and stage of my life with a wonderful wife and young family is to enjoy being in the water.

And if you are in your own swim group, and like me have an appreciation for the hard work that your own coaches do, this story is an important lesson in reminding your swim coaches, their bosses, and their bosses bosses how much you appreciate what they do. I like my fellow swimmers unfortunately didn’t sufficiently bring this to the attention of the Weymouth Club management before said management made a bone-headed decision…

Last week our masters swim group at Weymouth learned that the Club’s management team decided to replace Candy and Andy, without advance notice, with new coaches and program that would “take it to a more instructional and, if the participant chooses, competitive direction” (stunning example of stating the obvious goal of a swim program).  How they came to this decision is a mystery as not a single person from the Weymouth Club spoke with any of the swimmers ahead of time about what their goals were or sought their input on ideas for the Master’s team. The cowardly and/or ineptly conceived way this decision was made is in stark contrast to the club’s stated goal to “make the club more family oriented.”  Clearly whoever is responsible for retaining members at the clue wasn’t consulted on this decision.

But this is not a post to bash the Weymouth Club, but one to encourage you to remember to thank your coach and most importantly, for those who swam with Candy and Andy, let’s immortalize our appreciation for all they’ve done by posting your comments and fun memories while swimming under them. Again, thank you Andy and Candy for all your coaching and I am confident we’ll all swim together again soon.

 

 

Fall Swimming is Here!

I apologize for having been derelict in my duty to keep the site updated this past month, as the fun of fatherhood has been a fun (but sleepless) distraction.

Fortunately, the turnouts have been great and importantly, Sept. is upon us, which means the water temps drop, the air gets crisper and, pending conditions, visibility gets clearer.

The Sunday swims are still on so if there isn’t an email, don’t worry, we’ll still be there. Keep in mind that tomorrow there is a high surf advisory, so all swim at their own risk.

Good luck to all the swimmers tomorrow today in Provincetown. We want to know how you fared and more importantly, see the photos to prove it.

Another swim that is coming up is the Boston Sharkfest. It’s name is more intimidating than the race itself, which is a one mile course from East Boston to Fan Pier. It sounds like a great event as you’ll have a wonderful view of the skyline (assuming you breath to your right). Here’s a link for info and registration – http://www.sharkfestswim.com/default.asp?PageID=21262.

Last year someone, I believe Missy, made the suggestion of a swim at Horseneck Beach. Although we never had a chance to go down there, we should make a point to take the Crusty Barnacles on the road to the South Coast this year. Start looking at your calendars for when you might be able to do a swim there this year.

And finally, here are some photos from the labor day weekend. Enjoy…

 

Weekend Swims on Assuming no T-Storms/New CB Caps Arrived

The weekend swims will be the same times/same place this weekend so long as they are not interrupted by any T-storms. Water temps are supposedly in the high 60s, so it this holds, it’ll be very warm and comfortable.

We just received a new shipment of the limited edition Crusty Barnacles swim caps if you need another or if you have yet to receive one.

Otherwise, I hope everyone is enjoying and/or trying to stay awake to watch the Olympic swim events. As entertaining as they are, we all know the real swimming events don’t begin until Aug 9 & 10 when they host the open water races. Stay tuned.

And if you’re ever traveling to San Diego, I strongly suggest seeking out the swimmers from La Jolla Cove Swim Club. We now officially have informal reciprocity with the La Jolla Cove Swim Club. Here’s a photo from this past Wed. Lot’s of colorful fish, a few dark purple jellies, clear water, and a sunrise over the mountains (odd it didn’t rise of the ocean).

 

Weekend Review; Weekend Preview

Another wonderful weekend of swimming with swimmers coming out Sat and Sun.

We still haven’t heard how the triathletes did this weekend. Share the good news if you got it. Meg and her friends Jane and Greg completed a 2.4 mile ocean swim from Peaks Island to Portland ME – this will make for a run road trip next year (see their photo below of the impressive feat).

Kimberlee was awarded  Dolphin Dave for swimming strongly sans wetsuit after a multi-week sabbatical and rumor has it, and there is photographic proof below to substantiate it, that Vic is now a grandpa.

Otherwise, we’re on again this weekend at the usual times, 7:30 am Sat and 8:00 am Sun from Nantasket.

Lastly, the order for the famous CB Swim Caps went in officially today and should be arriving in a couple of weeks.

Open water race in Boston Harbor – Aug 19

I just learned that the Save the Harbor/Save the Bay organization is hosting its 1st Annual Swim for Boston Harbor Sunday Aug. 19. It’s a 1-mile competitive (more importantly fun) swim, with wet suit and non-wet suit divisions. It’ll start from the L Street bath house, South Boston. Here’s the website with all the details – www.swim4bostonharbor.org.

It’s a great organization especially for those of us who appreciate the relatively clean and getting cleaner waters in our area. Some of our brave members supported their April Save the Harbor / Save the Bay Cupid Splash. I recall, based on the attire that day, that the conditions were borderline tropical, like most April weekends in Boston. Here’s a photo to help prove it and to bring back those memories.

Like the Cupid event in April, the race in Aug has post-event activities sponsored by Harpoon Brewery with prizes from Jet Blue, my favorite being the best costume/swimsuit (Jane L, that means you).

July 21-22 Open Water Swims @ Nantasket Beach

Welcome to all the new swimmers who joined the swims this weekend. Congratulations to all those who participated in the Swim Across America one mile charity swim at Nantasket on Sat and for all the awareness for and contributions to such a great cause supporting cancer research and prevention.

Also, kudos to Chris D for bracing the frigid waters on Sat. in York Maine for the Nubble Light Challenge, a 2.4 mile swim to support the Maine Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. We have confirmed from two very reliable sources he completed it sans wetsuit.

Swimming times/locales are the same for this weekend and as mentioned previously, are merely guidelines as we know how busy everyone’s schedules are. To remind everyone, Sat, we meet and try to quickly get into the water around 7:30 ad Sun meet around 7:45 and get in the water around 8:00 am. Sunday’s have been known to have fresh fruit, pastries, bagels, animal crackers and coffee available following the swim. We will try a swim either Sat. or Sun to Gunrock Beach to change things up a bit depending on conditions.

The water temps right now are reportedly 72 degrees, which is unusually warm this time of year and if they hold, make it easier to head out swimming without a wetsuit. However, we strongly encourage you swim in whatever makes you most comfortable and we are in no way sole adherents to the bare skin doctrine adopted by other admirable but masochistic open water swim groups.

To maintain our fearless leader/swim recruiter Vic’s tradition, here’s the “random” photo from last weekend taken by none other than a friendly officer that checks in on us from time to time to ensure we’re safe.

 

 

 

 

 

Quote of the day:

“Did you know that dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish?” Anonymous (or I’m too lazy to research who said this – anyone know?).

Upcoming Swims/Save the Date: Aug 12, 2012

Upcoming Swims:

Weekend swims for July 14th and 15th remain the same – meet around 7:30 AM on Sat. morning and around 7:45/8:00 am Sun. Both days we start from the Southeast end of Nantasket Beach (take your first right into the beach parking lot where you’ll see Beach Fire restaurant). I promise fins casting long 10 foot shadows will remain south of Cape Cod.

Another option for this Sat (July 14) is the Swim Across America one mile swim in Hull starting from the Mary Jeanette Murray bathhouse. It starts at 9:00 am with a post-swim celebration at the Red Parrot. To register or to support a swimmer click here. The Crusty Barnacles has it’s own team this year and it’s looking for more members.

Save the Date

August 12, 2012 is the 2nd Annual Barnacle (Mass) Bay Bash at 7:00 am. This is an approximately three mile fun swim where we plan to have kayaks and paddle boards escorting us from our usual meeting place in Nantasket to Black Rock Beach in Cohasset. We had to change venues from last year’s swim from Black Rock to Sandy Beach and back due to limited parking at BR Beach and very vigilant lifeguards at Sandy (we would pose a liability to the town if we swim in during life-guarding hours).

This is purely a fun swim only and is NOT a race. There are two coves along the way swimmers can stop and either rest at or turnaround from. The early 7:00 am start and day were selected for the 8:00 am high tide on Aug 12, allowing everyone to swim with safe clearance over breakwater rocks on the way there and back that will significantly shorten the swim distance.

Limited edition 2nd Annual Mass Bay Bash shirts will be made available for a nominal price, so RSVP as soon as possible. More details to follow…

Swim Caps

The first run of bright orange, can’t miss you swimming from a mile away, Crusty Barnacle Swim Caps has been depleted and we have had requests for more caps. We’ll be placing a new order shortly, but to help get the most accurate number of caps, email us at swim@crustybarnacles.com if you think you would like another, don’t have one and would be interested in keeping your noggin warm, or you know someone else who just likes to wear bright orange with blue accent caps out and about.

Quote of the Day

“When life gets you down, do you wanna know what you’ve gotta do? Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming”, as spoken by the modern day philosopher extraordinaire/blue fish named Dory from Finding Nemo. I admit I stole this one or perhaps received inspiration for it from the book “Swim” by Lynn Sherr, which I had promised to review but have not yet finished on account of travels with an infant which is a comedy of errors the precludes one from staying focused on any one task greater than 15 seconds. Stay tuned or just go out and get the book (it’s available on those Nooks, Kindle and Ipads if it’s easier, as The Old Colony Library Network was an extended wait-list). But seriously, does swimming not make your day all the better compared to those days you don’t swim?

Lots of Happenings: New Summer Hours…

Unseasonably warm waters made it a perfect weekend for swimming for the Crusty Barnacles on both Sat and Sun.

Congratulations to everyone who participated in the Cohasset Tri and/or Mile Swim Off. See the photos below (if you have more that you want posted, send them along or if possible upload to the comments section).  Sufficed to say we had a good turnout and even a first place finish in the swim for Andy Strehle.

Too early to predict next weekend, but we are now enacting our new summer hours – this means meeting around 7:30 AM at Nantasket on Sat. morning and around 7:45/8:00 am Sun. Of course, these are merely guidelines and we encourage everyone to show when it’s convenient as there are sure to be swimmers coming or going. Just arrive before 8am, as that’s when the parking lots begin charging. But no worries if you arrive before 8am and leave your car. They will not charge for parking once you’re inside the gate.

Summer Reading: NPR had an interesting interview today with an author of a new book titled Swim: Why We Love the Water. I can’t speak intelligently about the book, but the interview is worth reading or listening to. here’s the link – http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2012/06/25/swim-lynn-sherr. I’ll post a review if someone else doesn’t beat me to it. For anyone who does swim, I suspect it’ll be something we can all relate to in some way.

Enjoy the week…

Quote for the day: “I’d far rather be happy than right any day.” Douglas Adams

And now some of the photos (reminder: send more if ya got ’em)

Disclaimer: The image with a likeness to Senator Brown may or may not be him and if it were him, which we’re not saying it is, doesn’t swim with us, but he would have an open invitation. That said, this website takes no political position nor does it affiliate itself with any political party, other than as a generalization based on no scientific fact we would venture to say the political leanings of the collective organization are fanatically moderate.

Impromptu Sat. Swim @ Nantasket 7:30 AM

Given the water conditions and the wonderful weather, we’re having an impromptu Sat swim (June 23 just in case). For those interested, and assuming no t-storms are present, swimmers will be meeting at 7:30 am at the usual place in Nantasket. We’ll either go along the coast or if interested, we can head south to Gunrock Beach. Round trip, this swim is about one mile depending on the tide.

Also, those who are not participating in the Cohasset Triathlon or one mile swim, folks are still meeting at the same time and place on Sun (7:45 AM from the start of Nantasket). Sorry about any confusion on that. We may however not have the usual supply of coffee and bagels, but you never know.

Enjoy the weekend…

Weekend Swim Reminder; Swim Across America Team Forming for July 14

Reminder that folks will be swimming both in Hull Sun meeting at 7:45 am (or thereabouts) from the start of Nantasket, and in either the Cohasset Tri or One Mile Swim. If you would like to participate in the one-mile swim, space if available and you can register by clicking here.

The Crusty Barnacles have also formed a Swim Across America Team for the event in Hull, MA on Sat. July 14. It starts at 9:00 am with a post-swim celebration at the Red Parrot. To register for the team, click here.

The water temps have definitely risen, now up to 64 degrees, where it’s comfortable going without wetsuit (at least on the surface). But as we all know, this can change quickly. Otherwise, forecast is for flat seas, which is no fun for surfing, but excellent for swimming so get out and swim.

Jun. 24 Swim @ Nantasket or Cohasset – Take Your Pick

Great showing of swimmers yesterday, especially given the wind and waves. And thanks especially to whomever brought the coconut sprinkled caramel layered brownie treats – we owe you for treating us to such a delicacy after getting pushed around by the ocean for an hour.

For this coming weekend, we anticipate a low turnout at Nantasket on Sunday given how many of you are signed up for either the Cohasset triathlon or its one-mile swim-only event or the traffic issues in and around the area that these events may pose.  Plans are still on to meet at the same time, 7:45/8:00 am, and at the same place.

However, for those interested, there is still room to join several of us who have signed up for the swim-only event, which I definitely recommend. It should start at around 9am from Sandy Beach (shuttles in and out of the area will be provided). The early forecast is showing the waters will be calm with little to no swell and only a slight breeze so it should make for ideal swimming conditions. Information and registration details can be found at the following link – http://www.cohassettri.com/swimoff.php.

If there’s a large enough turnout for the swim, I’m guessing it could mean more organized open water swim events in the future, which would be a very good thing.

Water Temps Warming…Upcoming Swims…

Welcome to all the new swimmers that have been showing up (see photo below from yesterday). The conditions keep getting even better down at Nantasket. No jellies or stingrays to report and yesterday’s water was clear and calm. We expect more of the same this weekend.

This Sat., June 16 starting at 10am (gathering at 9am) there will me a one-mile swim in Dorchester Bay to celebrate Jim Doty, a legendary open water swimmer and founder of the New England Marathon Swimming Association. It’ll start from the L St. Bath House (M St. entrance of the Curley Community Ctr). No cost, but donations to the Mission Haiti (www.sawgrasschurch.org) are accepted. Contact Greg O’Conner for more info at gregoc@rcn.com.

This Sun., June 17, we’ll be meeting at Nantasket at the same time, 7:45 and in the water by 8:00 am. Coffee will hopefully return this week.

And in two weeks on Sun., June 24, space is still available for the one mile swim only leg/race of the Cohasset Triathlon (http://www.cohassettri.com/). Elizabeth Warren is rumored to have signed up for the swim so as not to be outdone by Scott Brown who is a rumored participant in the triathlon. Could the post-event activities include a campaign debate to settle once and for all which candidate would best represent the growing voting bloc of striped bass and lobster or will they pander to the politically influential but shrinking numbers of sea lions off the shores of Chatham? Only way to know is to get out for the swim.

Lastly, we don’t want to limit organized swims to Sunday or at the 8am time slot. Folks are heading out at various times throughout the week and from different locations. Feel free to email us at swim@crustybarnacles.com and we’ll add you to the email distribution list where you can connect with other swimmers.

Enjoy the week…