Anna had mentioned the need to do a longish open water swim this weekend. With the water quality of the Madison lakes always in question, I had the bright idea of heading up to Devil's Lake for a morning swim.
And so we did. Headed out of Madison Sunday about 6:00 am for the ride up. Nice morning, calm lake. Started at the south beach. After some discussion about directions, distances, etc., basically said the hell with it, lets just swim to the north beach and then back (pretty much the longest possible way across the lake). I had guessed it to be about a mile one way, turns out I was off a bit, probably closer to 1-1/4 miles one way.
Water was cold but tolerable, relatively clear, but visibility still wasn't as good as I had expected. Nothing too exciting to report, just keep swimming, just keep swimming. Took it at a nice easy pace. Nearing the north beach we came across one swimmer heading the other way. Turns out there were probably 10-20 others heading south that we had completely missed and only noticed once we stopped.
After a 10-minute break, and much discussion about alternate routes back, we headed south for the return leg. Again nothing too exciting. I don't know what changed coming back, but I was no longer keeping pace with Anna very well. Either she picked it up or I was slowing down. Still felt fine, little tired but not bad considering the amount of time in the water.
Eventually made it back to the south beach. Total swim time 1:43 and change, 51 minutes out, 52 minutes back in. Not fast by any stretch of the imagination, but 2.4 miles+ in the water. This makes me happy. Now I just need to do it on race day with 2000 of my closest friends trying to beat the hell out of me.
Regardless, I'd really like to do this swim 4-5 more times over the next 10 weeks. If anyone is interested please let me know.