Half Way! (Day 183)

I’m halfway through my year of swimming! Today marks 183 days of swimming and there are 182 days left in the year. I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with myself for not (yet) missing a swim. There were some challenging days. Those early, crack of dawn swims with Covid, those road trip side-of-the-road lake plunges, the coming home late after a long day and having to race down to the bay for a quick dip. But mostly it’s been easy. Mostly it’s been wonderful.  

It seems fitting that my halfway swim was a wildcard. Hazel and I set off for New Hampshire this morning to make a pilgrimage to the lake of my childhood. But we won’t arrive there until tomorrow so today I had to find a swim on the road. I could have woken up early and swum in Lac Louisa before we left, but I chose not to. I wanted to challenge myself to find a swim somewhere novel and I knew if I’d already swum, I might not be as motivated to make it happen. And Hazel is an excellent adventure companion. That time we off-roaded after a mountain bike race to find a swim is still one of my favorites. 

It turned out to be easy, though. The drive from Quebec through Vermont is riddled with lakes and rivers; the biggest one being Lake Champlain, which was where I decided to jump in. We drove through Burlington (which we loved) and made our way to the water, ending up at Blanchard Beach. Honestly, it wasn’t the greatest. I think I should have done a bit of research because I’m sure there are much nicer spots to experience Lake Champlain. This was a shallow, sandy cove, crowded with beach-goers. The water was warm (like really really warm) and pretty gunky. Like any popular, shallow beach, it was swirling with the reminders of all of the people that flock to it. 

I swam out beyond the official swimming area and things improved a lot. The water was deeper, clearer, and colder.

Most striking to me was how much energy and movement there was. It felt like swimming in the bay; all rolling waves and currents, but with fresh water.

Since there was a lot of movement and since I didn’t know the currents, I stayed close to the shore once I got away from the initial cove. There were lots of paddleboarders and kayakers, though, so I could see that things were pretty safe. I swam for a half hour or so and then went to retrieve Hazel who was starving, and we had a nice lunch and wander around Burlington. 

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