Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Turkey Day Dip (aka Re-frost the Turkey)

Next Swim: 9AM Thanksgiving morning

Last Swims: Itch and probably Diablo, no details to share

Announcing the first annual (?) Thanksgiving Klode Kru Turkey Day Dip.

Are you... worried that you won't be able to hack the cold water on January 1st and want to do a dry-run, oops, wet-run before the Polar Plunge?

Or... are you dreading the day with family and looking for an amazing accomplishment to yammer on about at the dinner table?

Or... has your Facebook feed been devoid of newsworthy stunts lately?

Or... are you looking for a way to avoid setting the table, running the vacuum, mashing the potatoes, etc, etc, plus an extra bonus sure-fire way to annoy your spouse?

No matter what your dark motivations are, come to the beach and do a quick dip with us on Thanksgiving.

We're giving a turkey to all participants. (No, we're not.)

You have We'Taco to thank for this bit of holiday madness.

p.s. to Diablo: Ardi galdua atzeman daiteke, aldi galdua berriz ez.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Endless Summer

Next Swims: No idea

Last Swim:
Sunday noon
Water: 47.?  flat as glass
Clarity: crystal clear at shore, turquoise but unclear away from shore
Crew: Diablo, Itch, Showgirl
Shore Support: We'Taco, Gumdrop, Squeeze o'Showgirl
Skin/Suit: 1/2, 1/2, 1

It was so long since my last swim that I forgot to bring a towel. 

The air and water temps were about the same as we less-than-enthusiastically got ready to enter the water.

In an amazing act of cold-water fortitude, Itch swam to the birches.  Diablo went to sewerpipe, and I did a tiny loop around the rock pile. They both wore wetsuit shirts, and I wore the whole suit.

Itch may be the new Diablo.  What will THAT do to the swimming universe???

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Never Underestimate the Crew

Next Swims:
* Monday Oct 23rd, 5:30PM
* Tuesday 5:30 PM
* Wednesday 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Sunday Noon
Water: ?? I wasn’t there but from the web it appears the water was 52 with 2 ft swell
Crew: Diablo, Wet Taco, Itch

Saturday 1PM
Water: 54, 2 ft swell
Crew: Itch, Niche, Magic Mike, Handyman Hank, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Friday 5:30PM
I wasn’t there, I know Itch swam, not sure who else

Friday Noon
Water: 53, 1ft swell
Crew: Drangonfly, Panini, Hank, Patriarch

Thursday 5:30PM
Water: 53, 1 ft swell
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Drangonfly

Friday’s incredible weather set the stage for a delightful mid-day swim.  Bright colors shown on the bluff.  The warm sun felt great afterwards.  Much colder weather is in the forecast so Friday will likely be my last swim of the season and memories of that swim will be in my dreams all winter.

I was surprised to hear that despite today’s rain three brave swimmers took the plunge.  Never underestimate the Crew’s determination to get in their swim.

I might be done for the season, but I know others will keep going.  Itch will swim anther week at least, and Wet Taco has her sites set on Thanksgiving!  I suspect Diablo will be in the mix too.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

October?

Next Swims:
* Thursday Oct 19, 5:30PM
* Friday Noon
* Friday 5:330PM
* Saturday 1PM
* Sunday Noon

Last Swim:
Wednesday 11:30 AM
Water: 52, 1ft swell
Crew: Panini, Handyman Hank, Patriarch

I wasn’t at the Wed PM swim, so I have no report.

Can this really be October?  Panini, Hank and I had a delightful mid-day swim yesterday.  The warm sun really helped.  And mid-70s and sun is predicted for tomorrow.  It’s too good to pass up.  Join us at noon Friday if you can.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Swim Mid-Day Wednesday

Next Swims:  Another warm sunny day is predicted for tomorrow (Wednesday) so Panini and I want to try a mid-day mid week swim at 11:30.  Join us if you can.
Also:
* Wednesday 10/17 5:30PM
* Thursday 5:30PM
* Friday 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Tuesday 5:30 PM
Water: 54 gently rolling
crew: Handyman Hank, Drangonfly,

Monday 5:30 PM
Water: 53
Crew: Capt’n, Mr. Anonymous, Itch, Handyman Hank, Wet Taco

The water temp is still OK, but it’s cool and dark when we finish swimming at 6PM.  But tomorrow should be warm and sunny so Panini and I will take advantage of it by swimming at 11:30AM Wednesday.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Patriarch Sandwich

Next Swims:
* Monday October 16th 5:30PM
* Tuesday 5:30PM
* Wednesday 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Sunday 10/15 Noon
Water: 57 degrees, 2 ft swells building to 3-4 feet while we there
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Drangonfly, Diablo, Patriarch

Saturday 1PM:  rained out, although Itch told me he swam later.

Special thanks to Capt’n for another GREAT Halloween Bash!  I wonder how long it takes him to put out all those decorations?  Outstanding job!

Believe it or not the water is still very swimable.  The only problem: when you emerge from the water it’s so damn cold and windy on the beach.  Despite a couple layers of clothes I was still shivering but the ladies took pity and warmed me up with a “Patriarch Sandwich”.  Eat your heart out guys!



Friday, October 13, 2017

Walking the Plank, Literally

Next Swims:
* Friday 10/13 5:30PM
* Saturday 10/14  1PM (if it’s not raining)
* Sunday 10/15 Noon

And don’t forget:  Saturday at 7PM Captn’s annual Halloween bash
5692 Sunnypoint Rd., Glendale
See his Facebook page for more info.

Last Swim: Thursday 5:30PM
Water: 55 small waves
Crew: Itch

Never say die!  The water temp yesterday was a very swimmable 55.  Perhaps the lake will give us one more weekend.  And even if she doesn’t we still have the 13th Annual Terror at Ted’s to entertain us.  Warning:  Diablo told me he was coming as a skinny dipper.  Yewwwwwww!

Even though the season is on it’s last legs it’s not too late to make improvements to our daily routine. The latest upgrade allows Itch to measure the water temp without gettin his feet wet.


Thursday, October 12, 2017

Bueno, Bonito, Barato

Aunque El Patriarca siempre quiere tener la razón, hay ocasiones en las que está equivocado. Nadar en temperaturas de 12 grados no solo es bueno para el corazón y la circulación también es bueno para el cutis.

The above paragraph is from Diablo.  Loosely translated, it says Patriarch is full of mierda.
Whatever.

Anyhow nobody swan last night as the waves were too big, 4-5 footers.  We’ll try again tonight and tomorrow night, the conditions should be better.

Next Swims:  Thursday 10/12,  5:30PM
Friday 10/13, 5:30PM

Monday, October 9, 2017

Don’t Be A Die-Hard

Next Swim: Tuesday 10/10 5:30PM

Last (non) Swim:  Monday 5:30PM - No one brave enough to endure 47 degree water.

In yesterday’s post I listed the swimmers I consider to be “Die-Hards” because they keep swimming even when the water is icy cold.  Wet Taco objected to being left off this list, and there may be others who felt I was unfair to them.

But hear me out dear friends.  Not being on the Die-Hard list is a good thing, not a bad thing.  The term Die-Hard does have some positive connotations :  persistent, tough, gritty, macho.  But it has many more negative connotations: obstinate, stubborn, pig-headed, dumbkoph, estupido, loco, idiot, lacking sense, triathlete, ultramarathoner.

So my friends Non-Die-Hard friends, feel good that I see you as a person with the good judgement to say, not swim during a thunderstorm, as opposed to someone who somehow sees virtue in violent shivering.

The Diehards Keep Swimming

Next Swims:
* Monday 10/9 5:30PM
* Tuesday 10/10 5:30PM

Last Swims:  I wasn’t at the beach Monday morning or Sunday afternoon so I have no report for those swims.

Saturday 1PM
Water: 50 with 1-2 foot swells
Crew: Itch, Drangonfly, Moondawg, Magic Mike, Panini

Friday 5:30PM
water: 53 with 1 foot waves
Crew: Itch, Magic Mike, Drangonfly, Handyman Hank

I’m just going day by day now hoping for water temps above 50, my personal limit.  But I’m a wimp, a few die yards keep going: Itch, Diablo, Mike, Showgirl, Drangonfly, Moondawg etc.  

Friday, October 6, 2017

The End is Nigh, But Hopefully Not Quite Yet

Next Swims:
* Friday 10/6, 5:30PM
* Saturday 1PM
* Sunday Noon

Last Swim:
Thursday 5:30PM
Water: 53 Calm and Clear
Crew: Synchro, Wet Taco, Itch

The lake is definitely cooling off, but a decent day or two is still possible.  It’s been such a great swim season. It’s hard to let go.  We’ll keep trying until it’s hopeless.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Gloom & Doom

Next Swims:
* Thursday Oct 5th 5:30PM
* Friday Oct 6th 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Wednesday 5:30PM
Water: 47!! Clear and Calm
Crew:  Itch was the only one brave enough to swim tonight, skin no less, as the rest of watched from shore and cursed the cold water.

Tuesday 5:30PM
Water:  52? (No one had a thermometer so this is an estimate.)
Crew: Nanook, Drangonfly, Handyman Hank, Panini

Monday 5:30 PM
Water: 59 very rough
Crew: Wet Taco, Drangonfly, Cool Hand Luke, Patriarch

Gloom descended with the readings on my thermometer.  It started at 65, but quickly fell to 59, then 53, then 49, and finally bottomed out at 47.  My lower limit is 50, so this could be doom for me as far as this season goes. But last year I was able to get in a November swim, so there still is hope.

Others, like Diablo and Itch, will keep going for a while no matter what, so if you don’t mind a little shivering head on down.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Swimming in October!

Next Swims:  Monday - Friday 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Sunday 2PM
Water: 63 2-3 ft waves, very rough
Crew:  Capt'n, Diablo, Amelia, Mitch, Wet Taco, Lorraine, Moondawg, Magic Mike, Patriarch

Saturday 2PM
Water: 65 choppy
Crew: Handyman Hank, Panini, Capt'n, Mitch, Drangonfly, Moondawg, Patriarh

Friday 5:30PM
Water; 60, 3-4 ft waves
Crew: Drangonfly Moondawg, Wet Taco

Thursday 5:30PM
Water 62, 1ft swell
Crew: Drangonfly, wet Taco, Itch, Patriarch

We've made it to October and the swimming is still decent.  Actually more than decent, with water temps in the low to mid sixties. We'll keep going as long as it makes sense, and maybe a bit beyond.

Meanwhile, 2-Ply sent me a picture of his new twins and tells me that No-Ply had no problem delivering two six and a half pounders!  Presenting Emmett & Hazel:


Friday, September 29, 2017

Drain the... hot water heater

Next Swims:
* Saturday & Sunday 2:00 PM

Last Swims:
  Friday 6:15 AM
  Water: 58-ish, clear, with a bit of a current out of the north
  Crew: Milkman, Showgirl

  Thursday 5:30 PM, no details

I was on the beach alone this morning, starting to talk myself out of getting in the cool water, when Milkman arrived.

And so we swam.  I continue to be delighted by the Big Tree, so that's where I went.  Milkman zoomed past me as usual, and then did the same on the return trip.  The sunrise, water, peaceful beach... were all lovely.

My water bill and gas bill will be soaring this month due to ridiculously long post-swim hot showers.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Always Rewarding

Next Swims:
* Thursday  5:30PM
* Friday September 29th 6:15AM and 5:30PM
Note that evening swims now are at 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Thursday 6:15 AM
Water: 58.9, clear, with slow swells stirring up the sand on the bottom
Crew: Mr. Anonymous, Panini, Showgirl

The air was cooler than the water this morning, and we all agreed that the water inside the rock piles was significantly cooler than the water outside.

It was shivery getting in. We sucked it up and headed north.  I visited the Big Tree again, and persuaded Mr. A to take a look, too.

Back on shore, we were positively gleeful over the fact that we had managed to drag ourselves out of bed, made it to to the beach, and had been so perfectly rewarded with a great swim and awesome sunrise.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

4-Plys

Next Swims:
* Thursday September 28th 6:15AM and 5:30PM
* Friday September 29th 6:15AM and 5:30PM
Note that evening swims now are at 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Wednesday 6:00 PM
Water: 63 small waves
Crew: Drangonfly, Wet Taco, Cool Hand Luke, Itch, Patriarch

Tuesday 6PM
Water: 62 calm
Crew: Abe, H2, Capt'n, Itch

Monday 6PM
Water: 63 choppy
Crew: Handyman Hank, Drangonfly, Cool Hand Luke, Itch, Liz, Nanook, Wet Taco, Capt'n, Patriarch

Hearty congratulations to the Plys on the birth of twins Hazel and Emmett!  Itch informed us that mother and newborns are doing well.  Not so sure about dad. Itch also said that mom is looking forward to doing flip turns again.  What's a flip turn??

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Big Tree

Next Swims:
 * Monday September 25th 6PM
 * Tuesday September 26th 6PM
 * Thurs, Fri 6:15am

I won't be there Wednesday morning, but I will be swimming Thurs and Fri at 6:15am.

Last Swims:
 Tuesday 6:15 AM
 Water: 60F, flat and clear as glass
 Crew: Showgirl, Amelia, Bart, Kathy, and two other swimmers... sorry, I   don't have the names with me, but I will update later.

Today was the first Klode swim for a few of the swimmers this morning, so... welcome! In their honor, I got out my thermometer. It tipped down to 59.9, but let's just call it 60.  It was another lovely morning at the beach, and the sun started to peek above the horizon about halfway thru our swim, though it was plenty light before that.

Everyone made it to mudslide. The new swimmers brought a dazzling array of post-swim refreshments which tragically, I could not stay for.

My most important topic for the morning is that I saw the big submerged tree again. It's large enough to be pretty surprising to swim up to.  In case you want to see it for yourself, here are the directions: swim north to the birches. Keep swimming.  A tiny bit farther is that stand of trees that look like all their mid-trunk branches have been removed. Keep swimming just to the far end of those trees. The submarine tree is oriented perpendicular to the shore, trunk to the east, at the north end of that stand of trees, kind of close to shore.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Thanks, Hank and Nancy!

Next Swims:
* Monday September 25th 6PM
* Tuesday September 26th 6PM

I'm not sure if there's any interest in continuing morning swims.  If so post a comment or let me know.

Last Swims:
Sunday 9-24 noon Atwater Beach Shipwreck Swim
Water: 63 a little copy, clear enough to see the shipwreck
Crew: Diablo, Magic Mike, Thelma, Forger, Dave, Julie, Drangonfly, Capt'n, Ziggy, Kahuna, Panini, Showgirl, Dave, Not Dave's Wife, Moondawg, Jackie, Niche, Itch, Wet Taco, Patriarch

Saturday 9-23 1PM
Water: 65 choppy
Crew: Showgirl, Panini, Diablo, Handyman Hank, Jack Frost, Itch, Molly, Lorraine, Moondawg on  his SUP, Patriarch

Friday 6PM
Water 68 choppy
Crew: Drangonfly, Magic Mike, Diablo, Synchro, Itch, Patriarch

Friday 6:15AM
Water: 66 small waves less than 1 ft
Crew: Showgirl, Panini, Dave, Cool Hand Luke, Diablo, Patriarch

BIG THANKS to Handyman Hank and North Shore Nancy for hosting the Close to the End of the Season Lake Michigan's Swimmers Celebration at their new digs on Brewer's Hill.  We got to see the fantastic job they did in renovating a house that was essentially stripped bare.  It's beautiful!  There is no doubt Hank deserves the nickname Handyman.

We lucked out with a hot sunny day for our shipwreck swim.  There was a little bit of chop but not enough to bother us and the water was clear enough to give us a good view of the wreck.   A couple of swimmers dived down to try to touch the wreck. Watching them gives perspective, the wreck is deeper and bigger than it looks from the surface.  Quite the sight!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Party on Sunday!

Update:  Sunday's swim will be at Atwater Beach at noon.  Meet at the flagpole.  Hopefully the water will be clear and we'll be able to see the large shipwreck that is just a couple hundred yards offshore, but if not we'll just swim along the shore.

Next Swims:
* Thursday 9-21 6PM
* Friday 9-22 6:15 AM & 5:30PM
* Saturday 9-23 1PM
* Sunday 9-24, Swim at Noon, followed by:
CLOSE TO THE END OF THE SEASON LAKE MICHIGAN SWIMMERS CELEBRATION
2141 N. BUFFUM ST, MILWAUKEE WI (Handyman Hank and Northshore Nancy's new home--you can take the girl outta the Northshore, but you can't take the Northshore outta the girl). HH and NSN will provide burgers and brats, beer, and soda/water.  They ask that people bring a dish to pass.

Last Swims: 
Thursday 6:15 AM
Water: 63 Gently Rolling, No Chop, Mostly Clear
Crew: Cool Hand Luke, Showgirl, Patriarch

Wednesday 6PM
Water: 67, 2-3 ft swell
Crew: Itch, Liz, Wet Taco, Mr. Anonymous, Patriarch

Tuesday 6PM
Water: 68 Chop on Top of One to Two Foot Swell
Crew: Handyman Hank, Itch, Drangonfly, Panini, Patriarch

After Sunday's 58 degree water the temperature has remained above 60.  It's supposed to be hot and humid the next few days, come down to the beach to cool off.

And on Sunday continue cooling off with some cold brews at Hank and Nancy's party.  They are self-professed beer snobs, so I expect we'll have a nice selection of craft brew.  








Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Nose Knows

Next Swims:
* Tue September 19th 6PM
* Wed 6:15AM & 6PM

Last Swim
Mon 9-18, 6PM
Water: 65 1-2 ft waves clear
Crew: Drangonfly, Capt'n, Itch, Patriarch

I was not at the morning swims Monday or Tuesday so I have no report.  If anyone was there and has a moment please let us know.

There has been much speculation of late as to the large descrepancies between the water temperature and wave conditions we observe on the beach versus all the various graphs, buoys and marine weather reports on the web. After long observation I can say the websites can be very helpful, and are often correct, but sometimes they can be misleading too, especially when the lake is in transition in spring and fall.

It's not that they're wrong, it's because conditions can change rapidly, with transient large local differences between one spot and another.  The only way to really know the conditions at the beach is to go to the beach.

But wait!  All is not lost!  There is one sure fired method for predicting the water temperature - Capt'ns nose.  We're walking down to the beach Monday evening when Capt'n says, "Warmer water has blown in, I can smell it.  It smells like 65 degrees.".  This of course elicited much ridicule from the rest of us.

But I'll be damned.  Not only was Capt'n right, he was exactly right.  It was 65 degrees.   I hate it when he's right!

So tell us Capt'n, what does your nose tell you today?

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Back To Reality

Next Swims:
* Mon 9/18, 6:15AM & 6PM
* Tue 9/19, 6:15AM & 6PM

And Don't Forget:
CLOSE TO THE END OF THE SEASON LAKE MICHIGAN SWIMMERS CELEBRATION
2:30 PM--people can still get in a swim at noon
2141 N. BUFFUM ST, MILWAUKEE WI (Handyman Hank and Northshore Nancy's new home--you can take the girl outta the Northshore, but you can't take the Northshore outta the girl). HH and NSN will provide burgers and brats, beer, and soda/water.  They ask that people bring a dish to pass.

Last Swims:
Sunday 9/17 noon
Water: 58 small waves
Crew: Diablo, Beth, Drangonfly, Phoenix, Wet Taco, Kahuna, Mark (Cool Hand Luke?), Lorraine, Capt'n, Itch, Magic Mike, Gumdrop, Pamini, Patriarch

Saturday noon
Water:  67 lots of chop on top of one foot swells
Crew: Kahuna, Gumdrop (on his SUP), Phoenix, Handyman Hank, Capt'n, El Jefe, Magic Mike, Nanook, Diablo, Itch, Liz, Mark, Patriarch  

Much consternation and moaning on the beach today as the temperature gauge failed to crack 60 degrees for the first time since July 17th!  We knew this day was coming, but it's always a shock when it actually happens.  

That's not to say the swim season is over.  There's plenty of warm water out there, all it takes is a wind shift to bring it back in.  And it's easy to forget but a couple of months ago we'd have died for 58 degree water.  It could be a lot worse.  Hell, it WILL be a lot worse.  

Regardless, it was a fantastic two months, perhaps our best swim season ever. 

Friday, September 15, 2017

Just Another Tequila Sunrise

Next Swims:
 * Fri 5:30PM
 * Saturday Noon (followed by a bike ride to Port by those wacky triathletes, all are welcome)
 * Sunday Noon

Last Swim:
 *Friday 6:15 am
 Water: 64.4 (yes, I used my thermometer), swells out of the south, clarity good away from shore
 Crew: Kahuna, Showgirl, Super Hera, Mark?
 Skin/Lava/Suit/kilt: 2/1.5/1/1

It looked like there would be no sunrise this morning, and then... mid-swim, there it was in all it's glory.  We swam north and the waves carried us along easily.  The return trip required a bit more effort.

There was a mystery swimmer just cruising out thru the rock piles when we got there-- we think that was Mark.

And no, there was no tequila consumed this morning.  Check back after the weekend.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Nostalgic Swimming

Next Swims:
* Thurs 6PM
* Fri 6:15AM & 5:30PM

Last Swim:
*Thursday 6:15 am
Water: 64, flat and clear as glass
Crew: Panini, Showgirl

*Wednesday night?

*Wednesday 6:15 am
Water: 64, flat and clear as glass
Crew: Patriarch, Panini, Showgirl

*Tuesday night?

As the summer swim season winds down, every swim is lightly imbued with nostalgia. When I wake up and I want to stay in my warm bed, I remind myself that the days of swimming are numbered, and every morning swim is a gift.

Panini and I arrived at Klode at the same time this morning.  The po-po were there, having a chit-chat in the middle of the parking lot. We did our best to appear law-abiding, and then rewarded ourselves for that effort with a post-swim skinny dip.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Still Great Swimming

Next Swims:
* Tuesday 9/12 6PM
* Wed 6:15AM & 6PM
* Thu 6:15AM & 6PM
* Fri 6:15AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
* Tue 6:15 AM
Water: 63 flat calm, crystal clear
Crew: Showgirl & Patrarch

* Mon 6PM
Water: 66 clear, a little choppy
Crew: Itch & Patriarch

* Mon 6:15AM
Water: 63 small waves
Crew: Panini & Patriarch

Not many people showing up this week, which is a shame because fantastic swimming is still to be had.  Take this morning.  Showgirl and I enjoyed a crimson sunrise while swimming through flat crystal clear water.

This time of year days like today are a gift, and every one could be the last.  Come and enjoy while you still can.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Is It Really 64 Or Did You Make That Up?

Next Swims:
* Mon 9/11 6:15Am & 6PM
* Tue 9/12 6:15AM & 6PM
Note that morning swims are moved to 6:15 because it's too dark at 6AM

Last Swims:
Sun 1PM
Water: 66 1-2 ft waves choppy and rough
Crew: Handyman Hank, Wet Taco, Mark, Gumdrop, Liz, Drangonfly, Diablo, Itch, Magic Mike, Patriarch

Sat 1PM
Water 66 wavy and rough
Crew: Gumdrop, Magic Mike, Super Hera, Wet Taco, Diablo

Saturday 8AM
Big Shoulders, Ohio Street Beach, Chicago
64 very choppy "washing machine" water
Crew: Mitch & Itch 5K no wetsuit, Drangonfly & Patriarch 2.5K wetsuit

Before the race at Big Shoulders I happened to be standing near the announcer's tent when he broadcasts that the water temp is 64.  A very upset lady walks up and angrily says to him, "Is it really 64 or did you just make that up?"

I cracked up because that's exactly what happens when I perform my daily pre-swim water thermometer reading and I announce the result to the crew.  There's almost always someone who doesn't believe it.  Mostly they seem to think the water is colder than it really is.

Now of  course my thermometer could be wrong, but it's always within a degree of Itch's fancy thermometer.  Or it could be that the temperature offshore is cooler than measured right at the water's edge.  But I don't think that's the issue.

For whatever reason they believe the lake is colder, rougher and more polluted than it really is. And any evidence to the contrary must be wrong.  But why do they believe that?   I don't really know but my theory is they're psyched out by the lake and really don't want to swim but don't want to wimp out either. So they resolve the internal conflict by changing the external facts.

I've done the same thing to myself a thousand times.  Before some challenge or other I come up with all the reasons why it's too hard and why I shouldn't even try.  Afterwards I wonder what I was so worried about.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Three Things

Next Swims:
* Fri 9/8 6AM and 5:30Pm
* Saturday 1PM
* Sunday 1PM

Last Swim:
Thursday 9/7 6PM
Water: 65 gentle rollers
Crew: Capt'n, Ziggy, Itch, Moondawg, Patriarch

First: Good Luck to all Big Shoulders and Iron Man competitors this weekend!

Second: Mark Your Calendars!
CLOSE TO THE END OF THE SEASON LAKE MICHIGAN SWIMMERS CELEBRATION
2:30 PM--people can still get in a swim at noon
2141 N. BUFFUM ST, MILWAUKEE WI (Handyman Hank and Northshore Nancy's new home--you can take the girl outta the Northshore, but you can't take the Northshore outta the girl). HH and NSN will provide burgers and brats, beer, and soda/water.  They ask that people bring a dish to pass. 

Third: Forger pointed out this worthy endeavor:
 http://www.milwaukeeindependent.com/syndicated/duo-walking-332-miles-great-lakes-conservation-awareness/?utm_campaign=Feed:+milwaukeeindependent+(The+Milwaukee+Independent)&utm_medium=feed&utm_source=feedburner



Monday, September 4, 2017

Endless Summer - Or At Least It's Not Over Yet

Next Swims:
* Tuesday September 4th, 6AM & 6PM
* Wed 6AM & 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Labor Day
Water: 67 calm
Crew: Handyman Hank, Magic Mike, Wet Taco, Forger, Karen, Drangonfly, Capt'n, Moondawg, Amelia, Becka (sp?), Lennie (sp?), Diablo, Itch, Mark, Molly, Patriarch and special guest John and his Trimiran

Sunday
Water: 70 calm
Crew: Showgirl, Handyman Hank, Magic Mike, Kahuna, Capt'n, Lorraine, Itch, Drangonfly, Kristen, Wade, Diablo, Phil, Molly, Wet Taco, Mr Anonymous, Patriarch

Summer vacation may be over on the calendar but not on the beach.  This was one of the best weekends ever. Despite forecasts of big waves it was smooth as a baby's butt.  The water was a bit cooler Monday, but still very nice.  


Saturday, September 2, 2017

Food Truck Brunch at Klode Sunday

Next Swims:
* Sunday noon
* Labor Day noon

Last Swim: Saturday 1PM
Water: 68 gentle rollers - delightful
Crew:  Showgirl, Diablo, Handyman Hank, Magic Mike, Drangonfly, John, Mr. Anonymous, Kahuna, Capt'n, Itch, Patriarch

There is a "Food Truck Brunch" including a beer garden and games for the kids at Klode on Sunday 10AM to 2PM.  Coming for the swimming, stay for the brunch.  It may be difficult to find parking.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Labor Day Weekend Swims

Next Swims:
*Saturday 9/2 1:00PM
* Sunday Noon
* Monday Labor Day Noon

Last Swims:
Fri 9/1 5:30PM
Water: 67, 1 ft waves choppy
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Diablo, Capt'n, Patriarch

Thu: No swimmers (that I know of) because of monster waves

Wed 6PM
Water: 68 Calm
Crew: Itch, Moondawg, Magic Mike, Sir James, Lorraine, Super Hera, Nanook, Panini, Patriarch
Wednesday night's swim nearly qualified as a Knucklehead Swim (swimming during a thunderstorm) but we mananged to scramble out of the water before it hit.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

A New Post-Morning Swim Tradition?

Next Swims:
* Wed 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Wed Aug 30th 6AM
Water: 64 calm and clear
Crew: Cathy, Amelia, Jill, Mark, Mark, Capt'n, Showgirl, Linda, Diablo, Patriarch

Tue 6PM
Water: 68 gentle rollers
Crew: Sir James, Big Show, Wet Taco, Itch, North Shore Nancy, Handyman Hank, Patriarch

Tue 6AM
Water: 64, 1-2 ft rollers
Crew: Mark , Mr. Anonymous, Panini, Showgirl, Diablo, Linda, Patriarch

Mon 6PM
Water: 68 1-2 ft waves
Crew: Lorraine, Magic Mike, Itch, Moondawg, Wet Taco, Capt'n, Patriarch

Mon 6AM: Rained Out

Cathy D made her annual visit to Klode today and brought some swimming friends with her.  She also brought her camping stove and heated up some water for hot chocolate, tea, and oatmeal.  Unfortunately the working slobs could not stay.  Too bad because us ladies and gentlemen of lesisure enjoyed hot drinks, refined conversation and a gorgeous morning on the beach.  Thanks Cathy.  Please come again.  You may have started a new tradition for our morning swims.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Torpedoed!

Next Swims:
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thur - 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Sunday Aug 27th noon
Water: 68 1-2 ft waves rough
Crew: Magic Mike, Panini, Capt'n, Ziggy, Handyman Hank, Moondawg, Itch, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Saturday 1PM
Water:  69 2-3 ft waves, very rough
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Molly, Ziggy, Capt'n, Diablo, Mark, Mo, Mitch, Showgirl, Panini, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Friday 5:30 PM
Water: 69 2-3 ft waves
Crew: Itch, Lorraine, Mr. Anonyomous, Drangonfly, Ziggy, Wet Taco, Sir James, Big Show

In all my years swimming in Lake Michigan I never experienced anything like this.  Swimming along when suddenly a large black torpedo comes straight at me.  It was maybe 4-5 feet deep and rising as it came at me.  I instinctively threw up my arms and it brushed against them.  Then it popped out of the water and flew away.  It was a cormorant!

Friday, August 25, 2017

Roller Coaster Water

Next Swims:
* Fri 8/25, 5:30PM
* Saturday 1PM
* Sunday Noon

Last Swims:
Friday 6AM
Water:  66, 2-3 ft waves very rough
Crew: Showgirl, Panini, Mark, Mark, Dave, Diablo, Patriarch

Thursday 6PM
Water: 68, 2-4 ft waves, rough, slow going especially north
Crew: Drangonfly, Itch, Magic Mike, Don Diego, Wet Taco, Patriarch

It's been roller coaster swimming the last two days, riding big waves and heavy chop.  It's fun but it takes twice the effort to go half the distance.  Calmer seas are forecast this evening.  That would be a welcome change.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Solitary Morning

Next Swims:
* Thursday 6PM
* Friday 6AM & 5:30 PM

Weekend Swims:  I'm thinking noon but open to other suggestions.

Last Swims:
Thursday 6AM
Water: 66, whitecaps covering the bay - irregular 2-3 ft high frequency waves, very rough
Crew: Diablo, Patriarch

Wed 6PM
Water: 68 Choppy
Crew: Itch, Magic Mike, Wet Taco, Handyman Hank, Patriarch

Wed 6AM
Water: 66 very clear, gentle swells
Crew: Diablo, Showgirl, Mr. Anonymous, Mark, Scuba, Patriarch

I biked to the beach on this gray drizzly morning and arrived just as Diablo was leaving.  He warned me that it was tough going, especially north.  I walked down to the beach and waited a bit hoping others would show up.  No one did.  I wrestled with myself.  Swimming alone in rough water is not a good idea of course, but I've done it plenty of times, in worse conditions.  I finally decided on a short swim.  It was exhilarating but a little scary too.  Diablo's report was accurate.  After much time and effort I barely made sewer pipe. I turned around and was back on the beach in no time.  I had the entire beach to myself so I sat on the bench for a while and enjoyed the beautiful morning sky.

P.S.  Monday's total eclipse of the sun was spectacular.  I thought maybe it was being over-hyped, but if anything it was even more dramatic than I imagined.  Pictures do not come close to the actual experience.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Below the Surface, and Big Swell photo-palooza

Next Swims:
   Tues 8/22 thru Thursday 8/24 - 6am & 6pm (Klode)

Last Swims: Tues 6am
Water Temp: 65?
Waves: flat with tiny ruffle
Clarity: crystal clear
Crew: Diablo, Showgirl, Flipper Guy

I passed Diablo in the nearly empty parking lot. He told the true tale of a sliver of warm water on the surface, and much cooler water below. I don't want to be the harbinger of doom, but I'm still a bit shivery after my swim this morning.

Anyway, it was dead quiet on the beach.  I got into the noticibly cooler water, and swam to the birches.  I crossed paths with Flipper Guy on my return, and even he commented on the cooler temps.

That said, it was amazingly beautiful and serene.

And here are the much-requested pics from the Big Swell on Sunday:


Before

After!





Sunday, August 20, 2017

Klode Kru Plunders Big Swell Swim

Next Swims:
   Monday 8/21 thru Thursday 8/24 - 6am & 6pm (Klode)

Last Swims:
   Big Swell Swim - McKinley beach Sunday 8/20 8:30am
      Water Temp: 68+
      Waves: 1-2ft from south
      Clarity: clear
      Crew: Showgirl, Itch, Neo, Panini, Crash, Gumdrop, Jack Frost, El Jeffe,  Drangonfly, Sir James, Wet Taco, Magic Mike, Mogal Mike, Molly, Lorraine, Rosa, Sara, Jake, Dave, Capt'n

  Klode Swim - Sunday 8/20 @ 1pm
      Water Temp: 68
      Waves:  moderate/heavy chop from south
      Clarity: clear
      Crew: Diablo, Scooby, Nanook, Forger, Northshore Nancy, Handyman Hank, Wet Taco, El Jeffe, Panni, Crash, Showgirl, Capt'n

Congrats to all the Klode Kru members who completed this morning's Big Swell Swim!  The announced water temp at the start of the race was 68 but every Klode Kru member I spoke with afterwards described the water temp as "Roastin"!.  (Me Toe-mometer placed the water temp  around 72-73)  While the water temp was delightfully warm (...by lake Michigan standards that is...) the overly playful 1ft waves pushing up from the south were a little less hospitable.  This made the final leg of the swim from Bradford Beach to McKinley beach REALLY fun....NOT!

Rockin' the swim podium today was Sir James and Molly who were the 3rd male and 2nd female in the 5k non-wetsuit division and Jake and Jack Frost who were the first and second men in the 2.5k non-wetsuit division

Complete results can be found at: http://onlineraceresults.com/event/view_event.php?event_id=19265




Saturday, August 19, 2017

Panini's 4th Swimiversary

Next Swims:
   Big Swell Swim - Sunday @ 8:30am (McKinley Beach)
   Klode Kru Swim - Sunday @ 1pm & Monday @ 6am/6pm

Last Swims:
   Friday 8/18 @ 6am
      Water Temp: 68
      Waves: Calm
      Clarity: Crystal Clear
      Crew: Diablo, Panini, Magic Mike, Handyman Hank

   Friday 8/18 @ 5:30pm
      Water Temp: 68.9 (per Itchometer)
      Waves: rippled surface
      Clarity: Crystal Clear
      Crew: Itch, Gumdrop, Nanook, Drangonfly, Erin (Quinoa salad?), Capt'n + Sir James sighting

   Saturday 8/19 @ 1pm
      Water Temp: 70+ (as measured by me toe-ometer)
      Waves: slight/moderate chop from south
      Clarity: Crystal Clear
      Crew: Diablo, Showgirl, Crash, Panini, Foxy Roxy, Handyman Hank, Liz, Mark, Mo, Catp'n + Scottsman sighting


Today was Panini's 4 year swimiversary.  While most may not remember the day, The Patriarch has been known to reminisce about the day before Panini's first swim.  The story would start..."Ahhhh, I remember when it used to be so peaceful on the beach.  In fact, let me tell you about the last day there was peace on the beach..."  Rarely would The Patriarch speak of the day after that day though...but get enough grog in The Patriarch and he'll rant with the best of them!

...but enough about The Patriarch.  This blog post is dedicated to Panini's 4th Swimiversary and the fond memories we all have Panini.  Like the first time she put on her wetsuit...backwards.  And the time she misspelled Dragonfly...a nickname that has stuck by the way!  ...and the other time she misspelled Gumdrop as Dogrump.  Still not sure why that one didn't stick....

While I could go on for at least a few more sentences...or maybe even a paragraph...about my fondest Panini moments I'd like to invite everyone to post a comment with your favorite Panini moment.  (...hopefully I haven't already spoiled yours with what I've already written...)  Many thanks to Panini for bringing her sensationally colorful personality to the Klode Kru.....here's to 4 more years, CHEERS!!!

Friday, August 18, 2017

Where are we going, and why am I in this handbasket?

Next Swims:
* Fri 5:30 PM
* Saturday 1pm
* Sunday 8:30am, Big Swell, McKinley Beach (in person registration at 7am-8am)
* Sunday 1pm

Last Swims:
   Wednesday 8/16 - 6am
      Water Temp: 70ish (per me Toe-meter)
      Waves: Calm
      Clarity: Clear
      Crew: Diablo, Showgirl, Molly, Capt'n
      Notes:  "Perfect!" ...and the swim conditions were nice too. :)

   Wednesday 8/16 - 6pm
      Water Temp: 75 (per the Techno Itchmometer)
      Waves: no report
      Clarity: no report
      Crew: Itch + 4 others + reports of Sir James sightings

   Thursday 8/17 - 6am  (storms / knucklehead swim)
      Water Temp: no report
      Waves: no report
      Clarity: no report
      Crew:  no report

   Thursday 8/17 - 6pm
      Water Temp: 71  (per the Techno Itchmometer)
      Waves: rippled surface
      Clarity: clear
      Crew: Itch, Ziggy, Blake, Mike, Kristin-with-an-E, Capt'n + 4 suits with pink barbies + 2 unidentified black capped swimmers + reports of Sir James sightings
      Notes: the storms passed an hour before the swim leaving dark clouds on the east horizon and a "potato" shaped rainbow....truly a Kodak Moment wasted.

My friends, Patriarch left town, and this whole operation has gone to hell in a handbasket.

The weekend swims are posted, so we can all calm down.

Many of us will be doing the  Big Swell Milwaukee on Sunday morning, and if you're feeling left out, there is still in-person registration Sunday morning at McKinley Beach.

See you at the beach.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Jack Frost, We Have Your Swim Trunks

Next Swims:
* Wed 6AM & 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6 PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30 PM
* Saturday 1pm

Last Swim: Tuesday 6PM
Water: High 60's with 1-2 foot waves
Clarity: nope
Crew: Kristen, Patriarch, Jack Frost, Liz, Showgirl, Panini, Itch
Shore Support: We'Taco

The big waves and warm water of this morning continued this evening.  Panini had a breakthru swim accompanied by Barbie, and coaxed into the water by Itch. It was a fun, wavy swim.

So ends the month-long celebration of Itch's birth.  Happy birthday! We had a delightful post-swim celebration with a typically eclectic collection of treats: watermelon, Paydays, brownie bites, margaritas, and a Goldschlager chaser.

Final topic: I have gained possession of Jack Frost's swim trunks. Jack - I'm a bit worried that you won't have a thing to wear Sunday for the Big Swell. Let me know if you want to meet prior to the event for a trunk hand-off.
No junk in these trunks.


The Real McCoy

Next Swims:
* Tue 8/15 6PM
* Wed 6AM & 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6 PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30 PM

Last Swims:
Tue 6AM
Water: 69 clear - bottom visible, 1-2 foot waves only 2-3 seconds apart - very rough going
Crew: Mr. Anonymous, Scuba, Showgirl, Diana, Rosa, Mary, Super Hera, Showgirl, Diablo, Patriarch

Mon 6PM
Water: 70 choppy clear - bottom visible in most places
Crew: Kahuna, Scott, Nanook, Itch, Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Drangonfly, Wet Taco, Lorraine, Moondawg on his SUP, Patriarch, and special guest Mark from Aberdeen.

Mon 6AM
Water: 68 calm
Crew: Panini, Magic Mike, Mr. Anonymous, Forger, Diablo, Patriarch

Sunday's blog was about a cursing Scotsman, but not a real Scotsman, a wanna be, FAKE NEWS.   But speak of the devil, an honest-to-god real Scotsman shows up on the beach, Mark from Aberdeen.  By chance he was doing a training swim for his upcoming Chicago Tri.  Our fake Scotsman invites him over for our traditional post swim shot and he joins us, gotta love those Scots.  So if mentioning someone in the blog means they show up on the beach, here's to you, Susan Sarandon.

Matriarch and I are leaving for Tennessee early Wednesday, to visit our granddaughter and also for a total eclipse party.  By luck they live right in the middle of the path of totality.

So that means I will miss the Big Swell swim on Sunday.  But good luck to all those participating.  Gie it laldy!
  

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Curse Like a Scotsman

Next Swims:
* Mon 8/13 - 6AM & 6PM
* Tue  8/14 - 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Sun 1PM
Water: 71 murky and very choppy
Crew: Wet Taco, Beth, Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Phoenix, Mo, Magic Mike, Itch, Forger, Lorraine, Diablo, Niche, Moondawg, Patriarch

Sat 1PM
Water: 70 1-2 foot swells, murky
Crew: Diablo, Mitch, Blake, Showgirl, Panini, Kahuna, Moondawg, Itch, Magic Mike, Scuba, Super Hera, Patriarch

Fri 5:30 PM
70 with chop on top of one foot swells, murky
Crew: Itch, Blake, Wet Taco, Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Patriarch

Today was "Learn to Curse like a Scotsman" day on the beach.  Kahuna, garbed in his kilt, regaled us or I should say verbally assaulted us with foul mouthed glee.  He promised more to come.  Forger I suggest you steer clear as he seems to harbor especially vile opinions of Irishmen. I can't repeat his language here but it involved Jameson and enemas.  And I pity any Brits amongst us as they will not just have Panini to deal with but now Kahuna too. God save the Queen!

Friday, August 11, 2017

26 Days of Great Conditions

Next Swims:
* Fri 8/11, 5:30 PM
* Sat 8/12, 1PM
* Sun 8/13 1PM

Last Swims:
Fri 6am
Water: 68 clear and calm
Crew: Panini, Kahuna, Showgirl, Dave, Forger, Moondawg (on his SUP), Sir James, Big Show, Scuba, Super Hera, Diablo, Patriarch

Thu 6PM
Water:  70 murky, a little choppy
Crew: Itch, Kristen, Don Diego, Moondawg, Andrea, Amy, Chris, Deanna, Patriarch

Thu 6AM
Water: 68 choppy clear, light rain as we finished
Crew: Diablo, Capt'n, Ziggy, Moondawg, Magic Mike, Panini, Patriarch

Wed 6PM
Water:  71 clear choppy
Crew: Itch, Handyman Hank, Itch, Wet Taco, Lorraine, Patriarch

Sadly, no naked swimmers or other outrageous adventures to report.  Just excellent swimming.  If  I calculated correctly today was our 26th straight day with water temps in the mid-60s or higher.

A couple years ago, I believe it was 2014, we had a similar season with a solid month of warm water.  Hopefully we can meet or exceed that streak.

But of course the superstitious among you will say that I just jinxed us by bringing the subject up.  I know that Capt'n believes that she (the lake is female of course) would just as soon rip our hearts out and feed them to the fish.  Personally I believe the lake doesn't care about us one way or the other.  But I do have to admit we've seen some dramatic skies lately, full moons, bright crimson sunrises and towering cumulonimbus nimbus (according to Itch) clouds.  A portend of something or other.




Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Bare Naked Lady

Next Swims:
* Wed 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Tue 6PM
Water: 72 calm and improving clarity
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Lorraine, North Shore Nancy, Kristen, Sir James, Patriarch

Wed 6AM
Water: 68 smooth as glass, bottom visible in shallow water
Crew: Diablo, Kahuna, Super Hera, Capt'n, Showgirl, Patriarch

As Capt'n and me walked down the path this morning we spotted two ladies splashing about just beyond the rockpiles.  Capt'n exclaimed "I think they're skinny dipping".  Since only their heads were above the water I don't know how he came to that conclusion, so I dismissed it as another one of his many fantasies of how he wished things were as opposed to how they really are (most of these fantasies involve women).

We were joined on the beach by Showgirl.  The first lady emerged from the water naked and quickly wrapped herself in a towel.  At this point I have to clarify that I did not actually see the naked lady because I had taken my glasses off to swim, and I would not believe Capt'n further than I can throw him, however the lady's nakedness was confirmed by She Who Can Never Be Doubted (Showgirl).

I put my glasses back on in time to see the second lady emerge from the water fully clothed in what appeared to be street clothes no less.  So I didn't personally see any naked ladies, but it's not a bad idea.  Perhaps we can make Wednesday Swim Naked Day, and perhaps Thursday can be Kilipitsch for breakfast day, and I'll bet some of you have some other great idea for themed swim days

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Please Keep an Open Mind

Next Swims:
* Tue 8/8 6PM
* Wed 6AM & 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Tue 8/8 6AM
Water:  68 calm and still murky - will it ever clear up?
Crew: Diablo, Magic Mike, Forger, Scuba, Super Hera, Patriarch

Mon 7:45 PM Full Moon Swim
Water: 70 with 1 ft swells
Sky:  Clear - Awesome moonrise over the lake
Crew: Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Connor, Jackie, Mr. Anonymous, Lindsey, Adam, Sarah, Dave, Nanook, Showgirl, Moondawg, Wet Taco, Patriarch

Mon 6AM
Water: 69 small waves
Crew: Diablo, Panini, Capt'n, Patriarch

Sun Noon
Water 71 Calm and murky
Crew: Foxy Roxy, Panini, Nanook, Moondawg, Capt'n, Forger, Neo, Diablo, Itch, Lorraine, Patriarch

Sat Noon
Water: 70 a bit choppy
Crew: Moondawg, Wet Taco, Diablo, Itch, Patriarch

Fri 5:30PM
Water: 69, choppy on top of 1 ft swells
Crew:  Itch, Wet Taco, Capt'n, Patriarch

I need you to keep an open mind as you read the next sentence.  Last night at the bar after the full moon swim we learned from Connor that a group that includes Milwaukee Riverkeeper and others are investigating the possibility of a swim event in the Milwaukee River perhaps as early as next year.

Go ahead say it; "Ick. Poo. Yuck.".  I can't blame anyone for being skeptical.  But keep in mind that the whole idea is to demonstrate the tremendous progress that has been made cleaning up the river.  I remember my mom telling me about swimming in the river when she was a girl, and I think it would be awesome if it could be demonstrated that the river is safely swimmable again.

There aren't many details yet other than the swim would be near the river mouth near the swing bridge where the river is deeper and slower.  One thing for sure:  it will be warmer than the lake.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Full Moon Swim Monday

Full Moon Swim Monday August 7th 7:45PM, full moon rises over the lake at 8:07 PM. Clear skies are predicted!  After the swim I could be persuaded to continue our full moon celebration at a nearby establishment.

Also, regular Monday morning swim at 6AM.

Last Swims:
Sunday August 6th noon
Water: 71, looked calm, but there was a strong current pushing north
Crew: Showgirl, Phoenix, Foxy Roxy, Panini, Nanook, Moondawg (on his SUP), Capt'n, Forger, Neo, Diablo, Itch, Lorraine, Patriarch

Saturday noon
Water: 70 and choppy
Crew: Jackie, Moondawg, Wet Taco, Diablo, Itch, Patriarch

Friday 6 PM
Water: 69, choppy on top of 1-2 ft swells
Crew: Itch, Wet Taco, Capt'n, Patriarch

Our amazing string of warm water swims continues.  But don't be lulled into complacency cold water could come back as quickly as it left.  Come and enjoy while you can.


Friday, August 4, 2017

Warm Water Cool Air

Next Swims:
* Fri 8/4 5:30 PM
* Sat noon
* Sun noon

Last Swims:
Fri 6AM
Water: 69, murky, calm
Crew: Kevin, Erin, Dave, Showgirl, Magic Mike, Patriarch

Thu 6PM
Water: 70
Crew: Itch, Moondawg

Thu 6AM
Water: very wavy and rough
Crew: Diablo

Wed 6PM
Water 71, murky, 2-3 foot waves
Crew: Kristen, Nanook, Itch, Mitch, Patriarch

The water was much warmer than the air this (Friday) morning.  My hands actually felt cold when I reached for the next stroke.  And I chilled quickly when I exited the water.  Fortunately I had a couple layers of dry clothes to change into, and a hat and gloves.  

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Warm Water Days

Next Swims:
* Wed 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Tue 8/1 6AM
Water: 68 calm, murky
Crew: Sir James, Diablo, Mr. Anonymous, Panini, Showgirl, Nanook, Super Hera, Patriarch

Tue 8/1 6PM
Water 74 a bit choppy, murky
Crew: Niche, Itch, Kevin, Erin, Wet Taco, Crash, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Wed 8/2 6AM
Water: 69 calm, clairity improving but still somewhat cloudy
Crew: Magic Mike, Sarah, Handyman Hank, Laura, Showgirl, Diablo, Capt'n, Patriarch

I apologize for falling behind in my blogging duties but I've been having too much fun swimming and doing other fun summer stuff.  It's been an incredible run of warm water days.  I probably swim too much but I have to take advantage while it lasts.

Monday, July 31, 2017

A Little Too Much Biergarden Perhaps?

Next Swims:   Tue, Wed, Thu 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Mon 7/31 6PM
Water:  74 Gently rolling, clairity improving - I could see my hand!
Crew: Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Magic Mike, Phoenix, Panini, Nanook, Lorraine, Itch, Patriarch

Mon 7/31 6AM
Water: 68 flat calm, milky
Crew:  Scuba, Diablo, Forger, Patriarch

Apparently a few of you stayed too long at the Biergarden Sunday, as attendance was sparse Monday morning, especially given the awesome swim conditions.  Too bad, you missed a good one.

Apologies to Itch, Nanook and Lorraine, we did not wait for you Monday evening, but you guys were a long way out and the flies were hungry and so were we.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Lesson Learned

Next Swims:  Mon thru Fri, 6AM & 6PM

Last Swim:  Sunday July 30th 1PM
Water: 74 still murky and a bit choppy
Crew: Ziggy, Capt'n, Wet Taco, Magic Mike, Eric, Foxy Roxy, Diablo, Kahuna, Molly, Panini, Phoenix, Lorraine, Showgirl, Sir James, Handyman Hank, Anna, Drangonfly, Itch, Patriarch

A beautiful day on the beach and afterwards at the Beer Garden.  Tales of adventure were shared by participants in the Riverwest 24 bike and the Point to Lapointe and Great Lake Plunge swims.

Special thanks to Mitch who loaned me a pair of shorts at the Plunge because I had forgotten to pack dry shorts to change into after the swim.  Moral of the Story:  Pack your bag the night before and take your time rather than rushing at 4AM.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Sunday is Robin Appreciation Day

Next Swim:  Sunday July 30th 1PM, and after the swim come to the Estabrook Park Biergarden to celebrate "Robin Appreciation Day" to belatedly celebrate the 24th birthday of our favorite swimmer.  And don't forget to bring or buy your Friends of Estabrook beer mug, it will save you money on beer and help out the park. I will be happy to tell you about all the good things happening in the park.

Last Swims:
Sat 7/29 1PM
Water:  Murky but improving, 72, 1 foot waves, very choppy
Crew: Drangonfly, Showgirl, Diablo, Capt'n, Patriarch, plus a large contingent providing shore support.  Also I'm not sure but Itch and the Plys (all four of them) may have swam earlier.

Friday 7/28 5:30PM
Water: 71 very murky brown near shore, 2-3 waves with heavy chop and big current
Crew: Wet Taco, Itch, Drangonfly, Don Diego, FBM, Capt'n, Kevin, Erin, Moondawg, Jim, Patriarch

Friday, July 28, 2017

Surf's Up

Next Swims:  Friday July 28th 5:30PM
* Sat 1PM
* Sun 1PM

Last Swims:
Friday 6AM
Water: 68 cloudy, 2-4 ft rough and disorganized waves,
Strong current pushing south
Crew: Scuby, Capt'n, Kahuna, Showgirl, Diablo, Sir James, Big Show, Patriarch

Thursday 6PM
Water: 72 cloudy 2-3 foot waves, very rough, strong current
Crew: Itch, Danielle, Kevin, Patriarch

If big waves and rough water are your thing, now's your time.  Personally I like rough water, up to a point.  Today's surf was rough, but not crazy out of control rough.  Swimming north was quite a struggle.  It seemed to take forever just to go a few yards.  But on the way back south it felt like an engine was strapped to my butt.  Yeeeeehaaaaaa

We had a new swimmer last night, Kevin who read about us in Milwaukee Magazine.  Despite having no experience swimming in the lake he jumped right into the heavy surf and seemed to have fun.  Welcome Kevin, and come back when the water is calmer, and we will actually do something more like swimming and less like playing in the waves.

Here's Capt'n doing the "Let Me Go", as the lake tries to pull him back in

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Gusher

Next Swim:
* Thursday July 27th 6PM (3-5 foot waves are predicted)
* Fri July 28th, 6AM & 5:30 PM

Last Swim: Thu 6AM
Water: 67 gently rolling, clear enough to see your hands but not the bottom
Crew: Diablo, Magic Mike, Itch, Showgirl, Patriarch

Last night's swim was washed out by heavy rain and thunder.  Itch and showed up hoping it would pass over but it just got worse right at 6PM.  So we stood under the shelter, popped open a beverage and enjoyed the majesty of a storm on the lake.

The beauty was marred however by a huge gusher of runoff (from the streets, not sewage) pouring directly into the lake from the concrete drain just north of the beach (what we inaccurately call "sewer pipe").  It created a huge turbulent river extending perhaps a hundred yards into the lake.  Even though the water seemed clear coming out of the drain, it turned ugly brown when it hit the lake, perhaps it was scouring out sand and dirt.  The current then carried the brown water south for a mile or more.  Not to mention of course all the gunk that might have flowed from streets yards and roofs.

It's sad to see our beautiful lake abused like this.  I'm no engineer but you would think something could be done to mitigate the problem, perhaps a retention pond?

P.S.  It's still possible to sign up for Sunday's Great Lake Plunge in Evanston.  I will be driving and could take two more riders.  greatlakeplunge.com

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

We're in Milwaukee Magazine

Next Swims:
* Wed July 26th 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30 PM

Last Swims:
Tue 6PM
Water: 70, clearing, choppy
Crew: Sir James, Itch, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Wed 6AM
Water: 66, clearing, a little bit choppy, with a noticeable current pushing north
Crew: Laura, Showgirl, Capt'n, Diablo, Patriarch

Check out the very nice article in Milwaukee Magazine about us.  It's not available online yet but it should be soon.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Laura Makes It Official - Almost

Next Swims:
*Tue July 25th 6PM
*Wed 6AM & 6PM
*Thu 6AM & 6PM
*Fri 6AM & 5:30 PM

Last Swim: Tue 6AM
Water:  68 with 1 foot gently rolling waves.  No visibility because of stirred up silt and sand from yesterday's big waves, but not gunky like yesterday and much less debris.
Crew: Panini, Mr. Anonymous, Scuby, Laura, Mr. Anonymous

Today Laura acomplished a major step towards becoming a full fledged Kru Member.  She completed the round trip to Sewer Pipe.  Congratulations Laura!  But of course before we can consider her an official member she needs a swimming nickname.  The sand is open for nominations.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Best Place to Be on a Hot Day

Next Swims: Mon thru Fri 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Saturday 7/22
Water: 69 a bit choppy, mostly clear
Crew: Kahuna, Sonnakuhuna, Diablo, Panini, Laura, Handyman Hank, Lorraine, Itch, Patriarch

Sunday 7/23
Water: 71 small waves clear
Crew:  Drangonfly, Don Diego, Wet Taco, Foxy Roxy, Capt'n, Handyman Hank, North Shore Nancy, Diablo, Itch, Lorraine, Forger, Showgirl, Magic Mike, Michael, Molly, Nanook, Mr. Anyomous, Moondawg, Mitch, Patriarch

Today was the highest turnout of swimmers for the season and several swimmers made their longest swim of the season.  Molly led the charge to Big Bay and a few brave souls followed her there and back (Itch, Michael, Magic Mike, that I know of).  The rest of us turned back sooner but I think everyone would agree it was a fine day for swimming.  While the rest of Milwaukee is broiling we stayed cool and refreshed.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Weekend Plans

Next Swims:
* Fri 7-21 5:30PM
* Saturday noon
* Sunday noon

Last Swims:
Thu 6PM
Water: 72 clear and choppy
Crew: North Shore Nancy, Angryman Hank, Magic Mike,  Drangonfly, Wet Taco, Danielle, Lorraine,  Moondawg, Itch, Patriarch

Fri 6AM
Water: 67 calm and very clear
Crew: Kristin, Magic Mike, Michael, Kahuna, Hundakahuma, Drangonfly, Showgirl, Patriarch

If we're lucky it might be good for a Big Bay swim this weekend.  And if I'm even luckier I may sweet-talk the Matriarch into providing car shuttle for one way swimmers such as myself.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Life as a Retiree

Next Swims:
*Thu 7/20 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30 PM
*Sat & Sun: tentatively noon, but please comment if you have a preference

Last Swims:  Thu AM it was raining and thundering so I did not go to the beach and I assume no one else did either, but maybe I'm wrong?

Wed 7/19 6PM
Water:  71 small waves and OK clarity
Crew: Kahuna, Sonnakahuna, Mike & his daughter Katie, North Shore Nancy, Nanook, Magic Mike, Itch, Molly, Lorraine, Kristen, Patriarch

Wed 6AM
Water: 68 calm and clear
Crew: Capt'n, Showgirl, Panini, Patriarch

My day yesterday.  Swim with the Kru in the morning.  Go home and get Matriarch and then we go to breakfast with an old friend at the Simple Cafe (yum!).  Go home and knock off the NYT crossword. We jump on our bikes and go to Bradford Beach, where Matriarch relaxes on the beach while I do a short swim.  We eat lunch on the patio and bar next to the beach house.  (Surprisingly good!).  Pedal home and take a nap to rest up for the evening swim.  Living the retirement dream.

The Great Lake Plunge (greatlakeplunge.com) is coming up July 30th.  They have extended registration to July 28th.  Enter "procrastinator" at checkout for a $10 discount.  I would describe it as sort of a low key Big Shoulders (which is full).  I am going and Drangonfly too and hopefully others too.  

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Halcyon Days

Next Swims:  Wed 6PM, Thu 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Wed July 19th 6AM
Water:  66 clear and calm
Crew:  Showgirl, Panini, Capt'n, Patriarch

Tue: 6PM
Water:  68 clear and choppy
Crew:  Jack Frost, Drangonfly, Laura, North Shore Nancy, Handyman Hank, Wet Taco, Itch, Molly, Lorraine, Patriarch

Ah those lazy hazy crazy days of summer.  No better place to be than on the beach on days like these.  Swimming doesn't get much better.  Thoughts of a Big Bay swim are dancing in my addled brain.  Maybe this weekend?

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Beauty and the Beach

Next Swims:
*Tue 6PM
*Wed & Thur 6AM & 6PM

Last Swim:  Tue July 18th 6AM
Water:  64 calm, clarity improving (I could see my hand!)
Crew: Panini, Magic Mike, Patriarch

The floating debris we encountered last night is now mostly confined to shore.  A gorgeous morning on the beach.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Swimming Through the Asteroid Belt

Next Swims:  Tue thru Fri  6AM & 6PM

Last Swim: Monday July 17th 6PM
Water 66 murky with gentle swells.  An unusual amount of flotsam and jetsam floating about.
Crew: Kristin, Mondawg, Wet Taco, Jack Frost, Molly, Itch, Drangonfly, Patriarch

Lots of debris floating in the water, mostly twigs and branches.  Not really a problem but annoying.  Kristen said it was like swimming through the Asteroid Belt.

Calming Down and Warming Up

Next Swims: Mon thru Fri 6AM & 6PM

Last Swim: Mon Jul 17 6AM
Water: 59 murky 2-3 ft waves, a bit gunky between the rock piles
Crew: Magic Mike, Patriarch

The lake calmed down considerably since yesterday, but the water was still plenty rough. It was slow going out to the birches but it was great ride back.  Mike said the return trip took seven strokes.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Bombed Out

Next Swims:  Mon thru Fri 6AM & 6PM

Last Swim:  Sun 7/16 noon
Water:  55 murky with very large unorganized waves 3-6 feet very rough

Only one swimmer was brave enough to take the plunge today.  Drangonfly left us all on the beach.  We tried to record her moment of glory, but sadly as happens too frequently these days a wise-ass photobomber stole the show (girl!).


Saturday, July 15, 2017

Surf's Up and So is the Water Temp

Next Swims:
* Sunday 7/16 noon
* Mon - Fri 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims:
Sat 7/15 1PM
Water:  55 clear a little choppy
Crew:  Not sure exactly, I came and left early to go see the Blue Angels which was good but disappointing in that three of the six Blue Angels were grounded with maintenance issues.  Anyhow as a result I didn't see who was all there, but I know a few:  Magic Mike, Drangonfly, Molly, Drew, Liz, Itch, Patriarch, apologies to those I missed

The warmer temp is going up and so are the waves.  3-5 footers predicted tomorrow.  The good news is that big waves often bring in warmer waters.

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Few, The Brave

Next Swims:
* Fri July 14th 5:30 PM
* Sat July 15th 1PM
* Sun July 16th noon

Last Swim: Fri 6 AM
Water: 47 clear and calm
Crew:  Diablo (skin!), Showgirl, Dave
Gave it good try: Panini, Lenna
Didn't even try: me

The cold spell continues.  I wish I was as brave as those few who swim anyway. But summer is far from over, there's plenty of good swiming yet to come.


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Cold Spell

Next Swims: Friday July 14th, 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swim:  Thursday 6PM
Water: 50 clear and calm
Crew:  Itch (skin), Danielle
On Shore Waiting For Warm Water to Return: Panini, Wet Taco, Patriarch

The cold spell we've experienced the last few days continues.  A couple brave souls swam anyway. Itch of course but also Danielle who hasn't swum with us recently.  They jumped in like it was nothing and swam to picnic table.  Impressive.

Scooby Sighting

Next Swims 6am, 6pm Thurs-Fri

Last Swim 6am Thursday
Water: 47.7F, flat as glass
Clarity: excellent
Crew: Showgirl Diablo
Shore Support: Scooby
Skin/Suit: 1/1

As I rolled into the parking lot I heard Scooby call, "Showgirl!".  Then he broke the bad news: he had seen Diablo, who said the water was in the 40's.

No surprise: Diablo was right.  I put on my wetsuit, and Scooby declined to swim, but it was good to see him anyway.

I made a short but lovely swim to the birches.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Stormy Wednesday

Next Swims:
* Wed 6PM
* Thu 6AM & 6PM
* Fri 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swims:
Tue 7/11 6PM
Water: 63 calm and clear
Crew: Kahuna, Phoenix, Panini, Laura, Wet Taco, Mike, Lorraine, Itch, Patriarch, plus there were five other swimmers in wetsuits who arrived after we were in the water, I'm not who they were.

Wed 7/12 6AM
Water: 53 choppy and clear
Crew: Diablo
Taking the water temp and then scampering for cover: me

With all the thunder and lightening and rain this morning you might think no one swam, but you can never count out Diablo.  He managed to take advantage of a short lull between storms at 5:30 and squeezed in a short swim.  Surprisingly, despite the storms, the water remains very clear.

Congratulations to Laura for her longest Lake Michigan swim ever.  Not long by our standards, but every swim a little further.  Go Laura!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Queen of Curryland Returns

Next Swims:  Tue - Fri, 6AM and 6PM every day

Last Swims:
Tuesday 7/11 6AM
Water: 58 clear and calm
Crew: Diablo, Drangonfly, Mr Anonymous, Forger, Diana, Rosa, Showgirl, Patriarch
Shore Support: Phoenix, Panini

Monday 7/10 6PM
Water: 60 clear with 1-2 ft gently rolling swells
Crew: Molly, Itch, Wet Taco, Patriarch

It was good to see our old friend Panini The Queen of Curryland on the beach this morning, if not in the water.  She promised to come swimming again soon.  So much for peace and quiet on the beach.


Monday, July 10, 2017

Too. Much To Ask?

Next Swims:  Mon thru Fri 6AM & 6PM

Last Swims: Sunday July 9th noon
Water:  55 clear and calm
Crew: Phoenix aka Crash, Moondawg aka Iceman aka Gumdrop, Jackie, Kahuna, Showgirl, Capt'n, Drangonfly, Itch, Liz, Molly, Lorraine, Kristen, Patriarch

Monday July 10th 6AM
Water: 54 clear and calm
Crew:  Diablo
Overseeing My Domain: Patriarch

After Saturday's amazing swim I guess it was too much to ask for a repeat on Sunday.  Not that it was a bad day, a month ago we would have killed for a day like this.

After I got done whining to myself (no one else would listen) I got mad.  Damn it, even though I would normally don a wetsuit at 55 I decided to man up and go skin.  It was a short but nice swim and the hot sun warmed me up quickly.  So it wasn't so bad after all.

Storms started the day Monday but they mostly passed by 6AM.  I didn't think anyone would be at the beach but I was awake so I decided to head to the beach anyway.  When I arrived Diablo was leaving.  He reported cold water near the rocks but warmer offshore.  I didn't want to swim alone but I decided to head down and at least get a temp reading (54).  Not another soul was on the beach so I declared myself the Emperor of Klode.

I'll be back to try again at 6PM.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Am I Dreaming?

Next Swims:
* Sunday July 9th noon
* Monday thru Friday 6AM & 6PM

Last Swim: Saturday July 8th 1PM
Water:  64 murky with some floating debris near shore, but the further out you went the clearer and cleaner and warmer it got
Crew: Drew, Mike, Laura, El Jeffe, Capt'n, Lorraine, Rick, Neo, Nichole, Sarah, Dave, Julie, Patriarch

Most days the time and distance I swim is determined by how cold the water is.  I hurry to get out of the water and into dry warm clothes.  But today I felt I warm enough that I could have stayed in the water all day, the only limiting factor is how far I can go before my arms and shoulders give out.  It was one of those swims I dream about in winter.  

Friday, July 7, 2017

What a Day

Next Swims:
* Saturday July 8th 1PM
* Sunday July 9th noon

Last Swim:
Friday July 7th 5:30PM
Water Temp:  I measured 56 on shore, but it was warmer away from shore, maybe 60
Murky Near Shore, Clear away from shore, 1-2 foot waves
Crew:  Julie, Debbie, Mike, Eric, El Jeffe, Capt'n, Patriarch

What a crazy day.  From 64 last night to 49 this morning, and back up to near 60 this afternoon.  Just a typical Lake Michigan day I guess.  The winds are expected onshore for the next day, so it should remain warm and possibly get warmer.

Good Luck to all the Big Swell competitors at Devil's Lake Saturday.  Several of the Kru are participating, I expect to see heavy metal dangling from their necks when they return victorious.

Shock And Awe

Next Swims:
* Today Friday July 7th 5:30PM
* Saturday July 8th 1PM
* Sunday July 9th noon

Last Swims:
Thursday 6PM
Water: 64 clear and a little choppy
Crew: Drangonfly, Wet Taco, Phoenix, Eric, Itch, Kristin, Molly, Mitch, Anna, Showgirl, Lorraine, Moondawg, Super Hera, Patriarch

Friday 6AM
Water: 49(!), clear and calm
Crew: Kahuna, Rick, Julie, Debbie, Diablo, Drangonfly
Shore Support: Patriarch

I am shocked that the water temp fell 15 degrees from 64 last night to 49 this morning.  But I am awed that people swam anyway, including two skin swimmers, Rick and Diablo.

The good news is that the wind has shifted onshore and is expected to remain onshore all day.  So the warm water could come back as quickly as it left.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Baby It's Hot Outside

Next Swims:
* Today Thursday July 6th 6PM
* Friday July 7th 6AM & 5:30PM

* Last Swims:
- Wednesday July 5th 6PM
- Water: 64 clear and a bit choppy
- Crew: Wet Taco, Itch, Showgirl, Kahuna, Big Show, Sir James, Patriarch

- Thursday July 6th 6AM
- Water: 59 very clear, flat calm
- Crew: Diana, Rosa, Jack Frost, Mr. Anonymous, Handyman Hank, Drangonfly, Capt'n, Ziggy, Diablo, Patriarch

I can't think of any place I'd rather be on this hot sticky awful day.  Come to the beach and enjoy the nice cool clear clean water!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

The Experiment

Next Swims: 
  • Wednesday (7/5) 6PM
  • Thursday (7/6) 6AM & 6PM
  • Friday (7/7) 6AM & 5:30PM
  • (note:  all swims from Klode Beach)

Last Swim:
  • Wednesday (7/5) 6AM
  • Water Temp: 60+  (DECENT!)
  • Water Clarity:  Crystal Clear
  • Waves:  Calm
  • Crew:  Diablo, The Patriarch, Crash, Forger, Ziggy, Rosa, Capt'n
  • Skin/Suit:  6/1

After our second consecutive warm winter, a warm sunshine filled spring and a hot start to June a betting man would have placed his money on a warm start to our Lake Michigan swim season.  Looking back at our blog posts from prior years, history would have certainly been on the side of the betting man.  Holding true to form though, the Lady of the Lake has been anything but predictable.  The cold start to our swim season has resulted in the terms "Baltic!", "Bollox!" and "Flah, Flah, Flah" becoming the common words of choice to reference lake temps than "Ah, alright", "Decent" and "Roastin".  Perhaps an indication that the Lady of the Lake disapproves of the mutinous Kru members who have defied the Pirates code and attempted to proclaim new nicknames?

As an experiment this blog post references only original nicknames.  If the lake temperatures continue their recent trend upwards this must surely be a sign that the Lady of the Lake views the use of original nicknames favorably.  If the lake temperatures again plummet to 'Baltic!" this is surely a sign that the Lady of the Lake still remains upset over the mutinous declaration of self proclaimed nicknames.  So to summarize this experiment....if the lake temps continue their favorable trend upward we should continue to use only original nicknames.  If the lake temps plummet to 'Baltic!' we should no longer use the new nicknames.

My plan is to return to the lake Thursday morning to continue this experiment....stay tuned!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Glorious Fourth

Next Swims:  Wednesday 6AM &6PM, Thursday 6AM & 6PM, Friday 6AM & 5:30PM

Last Swim: Tuesday July 4th, Big Bay Beach
Water:  60 clear, a little choppy,  but lots of twigs, leaves and pollen in some places, easily avoidable
Crew: Mike, Eric, Showgirl, Wet Taco, Handyman (Angryman?) Hank, Mitch, Itch, Drangonfly, Phoenix, Foxy Roxy, Kahuna, Moondawg, Capt'n, Ziggy, Diablo, Patriarch

A beautiful day and warmer water had swimmers crawling out from whatever rock they've been hiding under to play in the warm sun at the beach.  A large contingent completed a one way swim around the point to Atwater Beach, 1.2 - 1.5 miles, depending on whom you ask and how straight you swim.  The rest of us did an out and back from Big Bay.  All our accomplishments were toasted, multiple times by some (I'm beginning to worry about us).

Fortunately nobody got hauled away in a paddy wagon for swiming which may or may not be illegal at Big Bay, or for alcohol on the beach, which certainly is illegal.

With the warmer water I suspect there will be more people at the morning swims, well at least Capt'n and I will be there 6AM tomorrow (Klode).  I feel like the best part of the season has arrived.


Monday, July 3, 2017

Big Bay on the 4th

Next Swim: Tuesday July 4th noon at Big Bay (5000 N Lake Drive at Pallisades)

I did some research on the internet, which of course is infallible, on swimming at Big Bay.  I found that there are actually two separate adjoining parks.  The southern half is a Whitefish Bay village park called Buckley Park which does not permit swimming (altough I would question whether Whitefish Bay has any jurisdiction at the shoreline or in the water).  The northern half is Big Bay, a Milwaukee County Park which is listed as a Lake Michigan swimming beach on the Milwaukee County parks website.  At the shore the boundary between the two is about 100 yards south of the pier, which puts us well within Big Bay Milwaukee County Park.

Last Swims:  Sunday July 3rd noon (I believe there was also a 9AM crew, if so please blog your swim.)
Water : 54 Clear with one foot waves
Crew: Itch (skin), Mike, Eric, Drangonfly, Mr. Anonymous, Kahuna, Patriarch

A bit cooler than we prefer, and disceptively rough, but still a very nice swim.  A few got as far as mudslide.

I'm sorry to report another tire has appeared on our pristine beach.  We called in our Environmental  Restoration Expert.  Kahuna carefully assessed and analyzed the situation and concluded, "Nothing a little C-4 can't handle".  I'm a little worried about him but we may need his legal expertise if the WFB  popo gives us any flak.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Rained Out (almost)

Next Swims: noon Monday (Klode)  & noon Tuesday (Big Bay)

Some of us may swim earlier on Monday. 9am, if you can't make the noon swim.

Last Swim: noon Sunday
Water: 50, plentiful chop out of the north, and building
Clarity: still very good
Crew: Diablo, Itch, Showgirl, Drangonfly, Neo, Mr. Anonymous, Mike
Shore Support: Patriarch, Phoenix, Foxy Roxy, We'Taco, Laura, Squeeze o'Showgirl, Ted, Allie

In general, I would say there are no bad swims, only varying degrees of goodness. Today we arrived at the beach to sunshine and loveliness, with a hint of darkness to the north.  Growing darkness. Darkness and rain that soon overtook us during our short swim, into the chop, back towards shore.

Let the record show that due to the lack of lightening, this was NOT a knucklehead swim.

We scampered out of the water, up to the overhang and recombobulated with help of our good friend Killepitsch. After a little convincing, we also shared some Ouzo. We waited out the downpour, and headed up the ramp as the skies cleared.

This floatie may or may not depict the quality of our swim today.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Therapeutically Cold

Holiday Weekend Swims: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday noon all three days.
Note: Klode Beach will be closed on Tuesday due to fireworks prep so we will swim at Big Bay instead (Lake Drive & Palisades)

Last Swim: Saturday July 1st noon
Water:  Crystal clear and calm, temperature between 50 and 55, depending on whose thermometer you want to believe.  Anyway it's irrelevant.  We swam through alternating pockets of relatively warm (60?) and bone chilling cold (40?).
Skin Crew: Itch, Showgirl, Diablo, Neo
Suited Crew: Phoenix, Wet Taco, Patriarch

Swimming with the crew can be informative as well as invigorating.  Today for instance I learned there is such a thing as a poop emoji, in fact there's even a smiling one; 💩🙈😩
I could not find a steaming one, however, which I could foresee using to excellent purpose.

In other news Neo declared that the cool temperatures we've been experiencing are actually "therapeutically cold".  It sounds nuts, but maybe he's on to something.  After all cold is good for sore muscles and the shock of cold water certainly takes your mind off whatever's been bothering you.

But who are we kidding?  We swim not because it's good for us but because it's fun, or at least it can be when you're not shivering.  The good news is the wind has shifted and pockets of warm are moving in.  I would not be surprised to find warmer water tomorrow.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Warm Up, Damn it!

Holiday Weekend Swims:  Sat, Sun, Mon, Tue, noon each day.
Note: Due to the closure of Klode Beach for fireworks prep Tuesday's swim will be Big Bay park.  Showgirl keeps calling this an "illegal" swim, I'm not sure why.  Perhaps ther is some obscure regulation I am not aware of?  But I say it's a public park and it's everybody's lake and we'll swim wherever we damn well please.  Arrggghhhh.

Last Swim:  Friday June 30th 5:30PM
Water:  50 clear with small waves
Crew: Itch (skin)
Shore Support: Phoenix, Patriarch

It just HAS to get warmer, right?

Kudos to Showgirl for swimming in 43 degree water.  That is definitely a top ten (or maybe bottom ten) swim.

Toe-mometer, Show-mometer

Next Swims 5:30pm Friday

Saturday - Tuesday: noon (Please use the comments section to propose an alternate time, using coherent, complete sentences and a compelling argument.)

Tuesday the 4th we will flout convention (and the law) and swim at Big Bay.

Last Swim: Friday 6am
water:43.8F ????  WTC? and flat
clarity: very good
crew: Mike, Showgirl, Milkman, John, Diablo?
Suit/Skin: 4/1

Lots of important news to share:  I have joined the hordes of thermometer-carrying nerds on the beach, and behold the inaugural reading below. I'm skeptical, but it sure was cold. I look forward to comparison testing it with all the other thermometer nerds.

Mike and I swam to the birches, Milkman may have gone further.  Welcome John, who might have been a bit shocked and definitely horrified by this morning's temperature. I promise, it will warm up. Because really, could it get any colder?

Oh yeah.  The mystery of the barricaded parking lot has been solved.  Due to  some sort of Klode crime wave, that does not involve yoga moms or any of the Kru, but may include fights and gunfire (??) the WFB popo now close the lot at 9pm and open it at 6am.  Or 6am-ish.  We law-abiding citizens have been deputized to remove the barricades at 6:01am.

The tips of my fingers still feel a bit strange.