Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Hosting Kate Greene in the Great Salt Lake

This morning I got the Marina at 6:30am and did a swim out to Black Rock and back.  I was a little concerned because the lake was a little hyper this morning.  She was producing 1-2 foot swells, nothing major, but not a day for someone who is new to the lake.  Kate Greene, winner of Jamie Patrick's "Swim Adventure Contest", was visiting this morning at 8:00am.  She is documenting her trip from Tennessee to California with all the swims she is doing.  It's very cool and I'm quite envious of her adventures!  You can read about them here.

I had enough time to do one lap of Black Rock and back from the marina.  When I got to the marina I had about 10 minutes to spare.  Josh and I hung out waiting for her to show and right at 8am she pulled up with a car full of friends.

Kate discovering that Gatorade tastes ten times better in
the Great Salt Lake.
Then Goody drove up.  We had a party!  We talked for a bit and then walked down to the boat ramp.  Kate asked for any last minute advice.  Goody said emphatically, "Don't drink the water!"  We swam out the marina to the red buoy and regrouped.  Already Kate was discovering the wonderful taste that is, the Great Salt Lake.

I was pulling my board, so I stowed her drink for her.  I asked if she wanted a quick drink and she said Yes.  We then resumed our swim north of the Marina to the first set of buoys, and regrouped there.  The waves were coming from the north so we swam into the waves on the way out, but got a nice little pushing going back.  Kate's adventure wasn't about going huge distances, it was about the experience, and at this point she was satisfied that she had significant experience in the Great Salt Lake.  She had a drink at every stop we made.  She accidentally drank some water and the gag reflex kicked in.  I had to chuckle.  I've been there.  Several times.  The lake although endearing to me, is kind of like having a dog ugly girlfriend.  Yes I love her, despite her... outward distastefulness. Literally.

We started the swim back and at the last point of regrouping Goody and I talked about next week.  He said, this time next week, you could be swimming next to me in Catalina.  That hit me like a brick.  I didn't realize it was so close!  He is in taper mode and I'm kinda jealous.  I wish I could do my swim in one week.  I still have 6 more weeks to go.  He mentioned that he likes cold showers now more than warm ones.  I wish I could say that.  In fact, I realize that I haven't swam in 60 degree water in quite some time.  

This Friday I'm planning to swim in Lake Cleveland, which is near the top of Mt. Harrison, south of Albion where our family reunion is held every June.  I've never swam there before, because I've always just rode my bike to the top, but enjoyed the view of the lake from the road.  This year, I won't be riding my bike, but driving as far up as possible (hopefully the gates are open), and then do a cold water swim up there.  Last year, there was still several feet of snow and the lake was actually overflowing and probably double in size than the previous year.  I guarantee the swim this weekend will be sub 60f water.  That should be awesome.

The sky was beautiful and calm, but the Lake however was
full of pent up emotion.  One day is never like the next.
Anyway.  After our swim we talked by our cars.  And Goody asked Kate what her overall impression was.  She said that she accidentally drank some water, and Goody said in his school teacher admonishing tone while smiling,  "I specifically told you not to, and you still did!"  I hurried to get soaped up and showered from the hose in the parking lot.  Then went to the restroom to get changed.  I kept telling myself, "This is a good sticky".  One thing about swimming in that water is that if you don't soap up real good it can leave you with a sticky feeling.  You get used to it, but it isn't ever pleasant.  Josh and I then went with her and her group of friends to Market Street for breakfast.  It was nice to chat about previous swims, the cool people we've met, and awesome places to visit.  It was a good time.

She is leaving for Bryce National Park and then on to Phoenix on Saturday.  I told her about Watergirl, and that I would try to get her hooked up with her for when she swims in Saguaro Lake this weekend.  I felt like Josh and I were good hosts for Kate and that we left her with a fantastic impression of Utah, and our dedicated group of open water swimmers here.

Total distance including earlier swim: @3 miles total in 1:45

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