Tag Archive: water temperature


I know I said I’d stop with the whingeing, but seriously…what’s with the weather?

Friday all day was beautiful and it was hot and I was dying for a swim.

Then I left the office and the heavens literally opened and there was thunder and lightning and a deluge from above. I sheltered a little and debated what to do.

And the rain cleared again. I headed for the beach.

It was still damn hot…the rain hadn’t stuck around long enough to really cool anything down. The beach still looked great, and we headed down for a swim.

Oblivious, we had walked into quite a shock…the water temperature had dropped sharply and suddenly and it was bloody cold!!

Now, to be clear, I generally don’t have too much of an issue with the colder water. I prefer swimming without my wetsuit, whenever I can manage it, and I do find that once the shock of getting into the water passes it can be quite pleasant to swim in cooler water. That being said….a certain amount of mental preparation is necessary, and to find the water temperature had dropped several degrees was kind of shocking.

In addition, the storm was still visible (well) offshore, with the odd flash of lightning, and the light was downright weird! I had my camera, but found it struggling with the strange light conditions…have a look and you’ll see what I mean…

I particularly love this one of Bel S sharing a story about Friday drinks…completely oblivious to the surprisingly apt wineglass-shaped cloud behind her….

 

Friday drinks...reimagined....

Friday drinks…reimagined….

 

Fittingly, the temperature may have been a little challenging, but he waves were definitely not. They weren’t huge, but they were those great ones that you can catch by throwing yourself off the second sandbank….completely safe but very catchable and with just enough oomph to give you a decent ride right up to the sand. Excellent opportunities for party waves for as long as our frosty toes allowed!

(Excuse the photo quality…light was a little odd…but I’m sure you get the idea!)

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Hot and Cold

What sort of water temperature is too hot for an ocean swim race? Or too cold? And for what sort of race? How long? With or without wetsuits? Surely safety must be an issue?

To be honest I’d never thought tooooo much about the topic. I know that there’s a point where they (not sure I’ve ever thought about exactly who “they” are) call it too cold to race without a wetsuit. In my head it varies between 15 and 16 degrees celsius.

Luckily, someone have given these things a lot more thought than I have, and even luckier, they are the people in charge of these things!

Seems there are international standards for these things, and then there is a NSW body that is far more responsible than I am. They’re called Swimming New South Wales, and they have some very comprehensive Water Temperature rules.

Apparently the general guide is 16-32 agrees Celsius range of water temperature, give or take a bit depending on air temperature over time. Please, check the link and don’t trust my vague reading of it if it ever comes down to anything influencing any decision-making…but it is interesting to know.

I does make me realise just how lucky I am (again!) to live in such a temperate region where this is such a non-issue that I have never actually been faced with conditions outside of these parameters. Best place in the world? Well….I don’t know if I can entirely say that. I haven’t been¬†everywhere yet…¬†Seriously, though, I do know how lucky I am to train week in and week out at beaches like Bondi and Clovelly and to race up and down this gorgeous coast. Grateful. That’s what I am every day for that fact.

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