It’s been two months since either me or my amazing wife had been for a swim. Too long, but Boris’ easing of the lock down allows people to drive places to exercise, play golf, go fishing, or go swimming in rivers or lakes. The dive centre at Capernwray where we would normally swim will not be opening for the forseable future, so we headed to the Lune.
Helen had had a couple of open water swimming lessons in the Lune a while ago, so she knew the perfect spot. Parking up at the Bullbeck carpark near Caton gave us a five minute walk to a relatively secluded spot on the river bank. We squeezed into our wetsuits and tip-toed into the murky water. For my birthday last year, among my many presents, was a Zone 3 orange swimming buoy, designed not as a floatation aid, but to make swimmers more visible. Additionally you can put keys, money, phone, etc, safely inside when you go for a swim. We didn’t have phones with us, but the car keys were safe and dry. I can say that it is one of the best pieces of kit that I’ve ever used, and I would say essential if you’re wild swimming. So good in fact that I’ve ordered one for Helen.
Back in the Lune and by god it was cold. It also wasn’t very deep. We set off slowly with goggle issues. Helen’s were leaking a bit and mine were still on the top of my head. Top swimming tip, goggles work better over your eyes. We both were suffering from brain freeze as we tentatively ducked our heads under.
We swam up next to the bank, clambered over a shallow section and then continued upstream a bit further towards an angler. We turned around and headed back. As we climbed out a woman walking her dog chatted to us. We confirmed to her that the water was damn cold.
Back home to a couple of slices of homemade banana loaf cake.
Uploading our swim to Strava showed that we’d not gone very far, but considering how cold it was and that we’d not been swimming for two months, it was more than enough.
Next time we might try a bit further downstream where the river is deeper, if we don’t have any rain. The Lune can be an unpredictable river, as can any river or open body of water, so be careful, especially if you start getting cold.
Mighty exhilarating it was though. Can’t wait to go again.