Sunday, July 28, 2013

Tour of Lakes

Josh organized this event that I've been anticipating all week.

Jim, me, Nathan, Karl, Joelle, Josh, Gary, and Kaitlin at the
start of our adventure at Causey.  Goody joined us after Echo.
Causey Reservoir:  Located east of Pineview in Weber County.  This small reservoir was my favorite of the whole day.  The water was the clearest and we started off the day with some cliff jumping.  Josh, Joelle, and a new swimming friend, Kaitlin, swam to the very south end.  A round trip of 1.27 miles.  It's about 20 minutes past Pineview.  Well worth the trip! I'd love to plan a training swim up there swimming the entire perimeter.  A distance of 6.3 miles.  The fact that there are no motor boats allowed at all on the lake makes it ideal.  Swimming Scale: 9.5

Pineview Reservoir:  My regular training spot during the summer months.  It's great if you get there before the boats.  Even then, there is a large section where boats can only go at no-wake speeds.  Today we did the "Buoy Route" which is a .98 mile round trip, but I typically add some "frosting" to the route to get it rounded up properly to that 1 mile.   Swimming Scale: 8.5

First swim in East Canyon.
Pretty cool place.  
East Canyon Reservoir:  The clouds came in a little for this swim.  It started to sprinkle lightly at the end.  The water was not quite as clear as Pineview and the location of getting in/out was less than ideal. There wasn't much boat traffic where we were (in the northeast arm).  There was a fisherman who I overheard one of the other swimmers say was bad mouthing our decision to swim and messing up his chance of catching a whopper of a whale.  Thing is it started to rain and he took off anyway, while we continued to swim.
Total distance: 1.00 miles. Swimming Scale: 7.5

Checkout Josh's muddy feet in the back
ground.  I'm not a big fan of mud. 
Photo of Josh's feet after Echo
- photo by Josh Green
Echo Reservoir:  This was the dud of the trip.  The water was so low and had recessed about 200 yards further than when I was there a few weeks ago.  It was extremely muddy, and disgusting getting in and out.

Until that water level rises to where it should be, I won't be going there again.  Total distance 0.95 miles.  Swimming Scale: 3.0

Rockport Lake:  When we drove past the dam and saw all the boat traffic a few of us said in unison: "Holy crap!"  The water here is nice.  It's fairly clear, but the boat traffic was awful.  There were jetskis and boaters and they were relentless on that lake.  We stayed right along the shoreline, but they even were going along the shoreline and I wouldn't swim there.  It's just too crowded.  Total swim: 1.01 miles Swimming Scale: 5.0

Kaitlin with Jordanelle in the background.
She typically swims Bountiful Lake.
I may be doing some training with her
next year in prep for MIMS.  Bountiful
Lake is the place for building up your
immune system!
Jordanelle Reservoir:  This was a much bigger reservoir than I remember.  It seemed the biggest reservoir of the day.  This is Josh's typical training place.  He told of us his route and we did it. I felt extra juiced at this point and took it faster than normal.  Even though there were a ton of boats out there, there is a buoy line that stretches along the beach which was great for sighting and keeping boats at a slow speed when coming near us.  Enjoyed this swim!  It was probably my third favorite of the day, just after Causey and Deer Creek.  Total distance: 1.01 miles  Swimming Scale: 8.5

Deer Creek Reservoir: The water level was quite a bit lower than the past couple years.  But that didn't result in lower water quality.  It was quite clear and nice.  Joelle and I swam together on this one.  We were stroke for stroke down to the end of Walsburg Bay.  I kept going past the 15 minute turnaround, because
Deer Creek is always a HIT.
we were already doing very well on our planned stops. We were about two hours ahead of schedule so there wasn't any huge rush.  I wanted to get in just a bit more on this one.  So I turned around at 20 minutes.  Then on the way back, I put a little more effort into each stroke.  Pushed it coming back and at the finish logged 1.37 miles.  Swimming Scale: 9.0

Utah Lake:  I knew this one would be rough for me.  James Jonsson swam the length of this and the pics from his swim and from what I've read in the paper about this lake didn't leave a good impression.  Still, I try to be open minded about where a good swim can be done.  It was very choppy and the waves were pretty bad.  I don't mind them if I can see underwater, but the visibility here was as bad as Echo.  Except instead of it being brown it was chalky.  A little better than brown.  But after swimming half a mile out, Josh, Joelle and I regathered and Josh challenged me to do a surface dive.  I did so, and man was that creepy.  It went from chalky color, to instant blackness.  It was freaky.  The walk out to a swimmable depth was nearly as long as Echo, and it was nearly as muddy under the lake.  On the way back Goody was still swimming towards us.  Josh and Joelle continued back while I stayed with Goody.  It was so choppy and I wasn't very visible not wearing a cap nor having the orange SSD.  My Swimmer Buddy board isn't very visible without the noodle or flag.  So I stuck with him, also so that we can use the buddy system to be safe.  I would freak out just a little being out there in the middle of that lake all by myself.  There was a boat that was speeding past us and around us. I was glad I stuck with Goody.  We got to where we could stand up and it read .96, so we swam a little further till the GPS read 1.00 mile exactly.   I saw a floating catfish and took a picture.  I was going to get a picture holding it, but as I gripped it, the little fish kicked quickly out of my hands.  I assumed it was dead and it startled me a bit.  It was nice talking to Goody on this one.  We had a good chat.

Talking with one of my favorite people
in the whole world.
In fact, when I met Karl for the first time he said, "How's your brother doing?"  I thought, how does he know my brother?  I looked confused, he said, 'Goody?'  I said, "Oh, he's not my brother.  You wouldn't be the first person who thought that. I had someone say, 'I like your blog Goody.'  I had to tell them, that I wasn't him.  Some people take the liberty to call me "Gordy" (which I hate).  It sounds alot like Goody.  I wonder if anyone ever calls him "Goods" like "Gords" and that bugs him.  Hmm?

Anyway, after today, the idea of swimming the entire length of Utah Lake is OFF the table.  Doesn't sound fun at all to swim that far in water of that quality.  Sorry Nathan and Karl, I won't bad mouth it, but there are other options I'd rather pursue.  Swimming Scale: 3.5

The whole gang after swimming the Tour of Lakes!
The full tour according
to SpotGPS
After this we went to Chili's in American Fork and that was a lot of fun.  Karl's wife went ahead of us and got a table ready for us so we just walked on in and sat down.  It was nice.  I ate a full meal, but it barely made a dent in my appetite.  I was still hungry.  8.66 miles total for the day.  Not a bad day, and it was nice to sample as many places as we did today.  I had a great time and look forward to doing it again next year.  Perhaps skipping Echo and Utah Lake, and picking up a few others.

Some suggestions for next year, although I'm not sure they're legally swimmable or not:

All the photos of this trip, can be found here.

And here is a video of the trip which I tried to put into a documentary short type thing.

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