DISCLAIMER: Open-water swimming is inherently dangerous. Open-water swimmers risk drowning, hypothermia, hyperthermia, heart attacks, panic attacks, cramping, jelly fish stings, fish bites, boat or jet-ski collisions, collisions with floating or submerged objects (including other swimmers), and other calamities that can be injurious, disabling or fatal! The "West Neck Pod" is an informal association of open-water swimmers who swim "outside the lines" with no lifeguard protection, it has no formal membership, organizational structure or legal identity, and its participants, including the author of this blog, make no representations and assume no liability with respect to its group open-water swims. All swimmers who participate in West Neck Pod group open-water swims do so at their own risk. Be careful out there!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

"Road Trip" Tripped Up by Mother Nature...Almost....!

The days preceding our already-once-weather-postponed "Road Trip" to Foster's Memorial Beach ("Long Beach") in Sag Harbor -- now rescheduled for Columbus Day -- were marked by declining temperatures and lots of rain -- including a late overnight shower...One by one, prospective "Road Trippers" defected, and by our planned departure time of 7:00 a.m. only five were left -- just enough to fill the "Pod-mobile" and allow room for gear and grub. Carole Wickham, Kathy Wickham, Karen Ruth and I set off from Huntington, picking up Annmarie Kearney-Wood and her freshly baked crumbcake along the way, and anxiously watching the thermometer as it gradually crept upwards from the low 40s into the low 50s as we made our way eastward and the sun broke through the remaining clouds. We arrived at our destination to find Long Beach in turmoil -- with a chilly northerly wind whipping the surface of Noyac Bay into whitecaps as wave after wave rolled in to the shore. Annmarie and I were undeterred, but Carole, Kathy and Karen voted to retreat inland, so after a quick detour to Big Fresh Pond in Southampton where we dropped off the dissidents and their gear, Annmarie and I returned to Long Beach where we enjoyed a lively, delicious swim in cool, clear, delightfully salty water....
It really is a l-o-n-g beach!

We would have kept swimming forever, but mindful that our Pod-mates were stranded without us, we cut our swim short and, still in our wetsuits, headed back to Big Fresh Pond. Carole, Kathy and Karen were still basking in the windless, flat, calm, and significantly warmer water, so Annmarie and I jumped in for a quick swim across, happy to be able to rinse our wetsuits and our bodies in the fresh water of the pond and add an easy half-mile to our yardage! Once on land we all toweled off, changed to dry clothes, and hunkered down at a nearby picnic table for a feast of bagels, crumbcake and hot coffee. 

Annmarie, wait! I have to put the camera away!
Karen and Annmarie

Yeah, what about it?

There's one here, too!
The ride home was peppered with politics and personal revelations, as well as promises of a return trip next year, for our Third Annual Road Trip to Long Beach in Sag Harbor...Maybe you'll join us....See you in the Salt!

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