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Swimming to Happy in 2018

Swimming started out as something different for me to do, other than cycling. A way to switch off stress, anxieties and noise issues that I was having. You can read the story here. It's a great way to remove yourself from a lot of people, a good way to explore and a good way to challenge yourself. This year is about exploring and doing as many swims as possible. Next year will be about distance.

There's been quite a few highs and lows this year emotionally! It's all coming together with the help of my friends and the need to explore new waters. Temperatures from 0.7°c up to 27.5°c.

For my birthday I did a swim in my local which was 2.5°c for 6 minutes. 15 swims which involved ice over the cold winter, the quest for finding ice was a good adventure. I've done one personal challenge which was an epic 39 kilometres which contained 14 different swimming locations.

Windermere has been pretty green this year so I've not been there so much, on the flip side the tarns in Coniston are the cleanest I've found!

There came a point this year where my fear of jumping into water was overcome. I've done a few and have started also diving (badly) into the water. Both a good test to improve the mind for other tests which may come my way.

While at an event in the Scotish highlands I went past Loch Ness, being so famous it had to be swam in! The water was about 50% clear, a dark tint to it and much darker when it dropped off which was a little scary, I wasn't ready to be gobbled by nessie!

Still more adventures planned...

Swimming on average every 1.34 days this year. 3 days (27th Sep) until 200 swims, 70 days (03rd Dec) until 250 swims, 137 days (08th Feb) until 300 swims! Estimated swims by the end of this year... 272!

Local Temperature Gauge Windermere Gurnal Dubs Others

Hard Tarn 8.1°c
198 - September 21st

One of the most beautiful places I know :)

Grizedale Tarn 11.3°c
197 - September 21st

First afterglow of the year :)

Gurnal Dubs 14.9°c
196 - September 18th

Swimming in the wind!

Buoy 13 17°c
195 - September 11th

Felt cold, it was good to catch up with the girls.

Ballachulish Slate Quarry 15.9°c
194 - September 9th

Not really wanting to swim in the sea, this was clear and quiet.

Loch Ness 15.8°c
193 - September 8th

It's very long and famous, so I had to swim in here!

Tranearth Quarry 14.9°c
192 - September 3rd

Quarry, waterfall and mine tunnel all in one :) a great adventure!

Rydal 17.6°c
191 - September 2nd

Tired after my two days of photographing events, the water felt cold, my friends warm :)

Colwith Force 14°c
190 - August 31st

Jumping around with the good camera!

Low Dam 16.8°c
189 - August 30th

Another dip to get my numbers up!

High Dam 17.4°c
188 - August 30th

A new spot for my friend, it's nice here.

Moss Eccles Tarn 18.1°c
187 - August 30th

We checked out a few tarns around here, some dead sheep around so didn't get in most of them.

Capernwray 19.6°c
186 - August 29th

A bit of change from this morning, it's almost tropical!

Gurnal Dubs 14.3°c
185 - August 29th

A chillier swim, no sunshine, no head underwater.

Windermere, Waterhead 16.7°c
184 - August 27th

Intro to open water swimming with Suzanna Swims

Windermere, Fell Foot 17.3°c
183 - August 26th

Warm water, still a little green tho ;-) back to the analogue thermometer!

Alcock Tarn 14.5°c
182 - August 25th

Felt colder than ther river?!

Tongue Gill 13.4°c
181 - August 25th

Cold water, love it! A nice little secluded river dip to start the day.

Elterwater 16.1°c
180 - August 23rd

Photoshoot in the light! Followed by a little swim, the force of the water wanting to leave the lake was strong.

Colwith, River Brathay 15.8°c
179 - August 23rd

Exploring while the waterfalls were raging!

Low Water 13.7°c
178 - August 21st

The coldest water by far, my new favorite temperature. The tourists were impressed!

Levers Water 14.9°c
177 - August 21st

After the summer and the rain the water is now full up again.

Gurnal Dubs 15.8°c
176 - August 20th

That good feeling you get after a good cold water swim :)

Gurnal Dubs 15.4°c
175 - August 18th

After the rain in the past couple of days the water is getting colder again!

Buoy 13 19.8°c
174 - August 16th

Warm water sunset swim.

Grasmere 19.9°c
173 - August 14th

Out with the Wonderful Wild Women

Rydal Water 20.2°c
172 - August 14th

A quick dip to see a friend and some dog stroking.

Grizedale Tarn 15.7°c
171 - August 13th

Cold for a change!

Gurnal Dubs 18.4°c
170 - August 13th

Swimming in the rain again :)

Buoy 13 20.9°c
169 - August 12th

Swimming in the rain #love :)

Ullscarf Gill
168 - August 11th

Awesome little pool to play in!

Harrop Tarn
167 - August 11th

Thermometer died!

Gurnal Dubs 19.8°c
166 - August 7th

Just nice to be alone, although I didn't really want to be alone today.

Potter Tarn 20.3°c
165 - August 7th

The cure for all things.

Bassenthwaite Lake 21.8°c
164 - August 4th

Another swim in the lake :)

Bassenthwaite Lake 21.3°c
163 - August 3rd

Swimming into the sunset.

Gurnal Dubs 18.9°c
162 - August 2nd

The pool all to ourselfs :)

Capernwray 22.5°c
161 - August 1st

Quick swim before the triathlon.

Wrengill Quarry Waterfall 15.8°c
160 - July 31st

Mindfull waterfall dip :)

Buoy 13 21.9°c
159 - July 29th

Trying to swim in the rain, missed out this time, moister on the bike ride!

Levers Water 20.3°c
158 - July 25th

So blue, need to get the proper camera up here!

Skelwith Force 23.6°c
157 - July 25th

It's not easy swimming where the waterfall is.

Colwith Force 18.3°c
156 - July 25th

A new spot with some interesting and deep features, needs to be explored more.

Grasmere 23.2°c
155 - July 24th

Quick blast to add another one to the list

Rydal 23.9°c
154 - July 24th

Meeting up with Swim the Lakes

River Sprint 19.5°c
153 - July 22nd

Refreshingly cool :)

Buoy 13 23.1°c
152 - July 20th

Jumped in, swam to the buoy, had fun!

Gurnal Dubs 22.2°c
151 - July 19th

One standard length front crawl!

Grasmere 23.4°c
150 - July 17th

Trying to swim with the WWW

Loughrigg Tarn 24°c
149 - July 17th

A quick bath with a great view

River Brathay 23°c
148 - July 17th

Need to go here more oftern, it's easy to get to.

Stockley Bridge at Seathwaite
147 - July 15th

Needed to dip, water was cooler. No temp.

Rydal 25.2°c
146 - July 12th

Warm and faster swimming.

River Brathay 24.9°c
145 - July 10th

1.4 kilometers in 1 hour down on a river adventure!

Gurnal Dubs 24.8°c
144 - July 9th

So warm, walked down in my swimwear!

Potter Tarn 23.9°c
143 - July 6th

So many tiny frogs!

Gurnal Dubs 23.4°c
142 - July 6th

So many little fish!

River Kent 21.8°c
141 - July 5th

Exploring somewhere new!

Capernwray 22.9°c
140 - July 4th

Breaking my fear of jumping before shooting the event.

Potter Tarn 22.6°c
139 - July 1st

Potter the Fell swim 2

Gurnal Dubs 24.3°c
138 - July 1st

Potter the Fell swim 1

Rydal Water 26.7°c
137 - June 30th

A final push from here to the pub!

Grasmere 25.5°c
136 - June 30th

Busy beach on a summers day

Sourmilk Gill 25.4°c
135 - June 30th

A lovley waterfall with friends

Easedale Tarn 25.1°c
134 - June 30th

Deep but clear

Codale Tarn 26.2°c
133 - June 30th

Tucked away and quiet, always a nice swim

Stickle Mini Tarn 27.5°c
132 - June 30th

HOT but two feet of weeds below the water makes for an interesting swim

Stickle Tarn 24.7°c
131 - June 30th

It's a big place to swim, after a long walk

Tray Dub 22.5°c
130 - June 30th

At the top end of the valley for a little more exploring

Swan Dub 21.9°c
129 - June 30th

A quiet little place that looks like an infinty pool

Blackmoss Pot 21.7°c
128 - June 30th

We need to go back there are otters and more exploring to be done

Galleny Force 20.3°c
127 - June 30th

Clear water and cool too

Dock Tarn 23.9°c
126 - June 30th

Maybe a bit too shallow

Blea Tarn 23.1°c
125 - June 30th

Somewhere new, big and needs to be swam again

Harrop Tarn 22.7°c
124 - June 30th

Silky smooth water

Rydal 26.4°c
123 - June 28th

Playing around on my doughnut!

Rydal 23.1°c
122 - June 26th

SUP on the Lake

Gurnal Dubs 24°c
121 - June 25th

So warm, so lovely, fun riding down and getting a puncture :)

Coniston 20.3°c
120 - June 24th

Post event swim around :)

Raven Crag Tarn 15°c
119 - June 23rd

Mud bath with a view!

Grasmere 18.1°c
118 - June 21st

Worth the 57kms to get there and home for this swim

Gurnal Dubs 17.4°c
117 - June 20th

Less wind, more fish!

Potter Tarn 18.2°c
116 - June 20th

The sun is shining

River Sprint 15.3°c
115 - June 19th

The cold water is alluring.

Easedale Tarn 20.1°c
114 - June 13th

Rain and wind, but very clear!

Sourmilk Gill 17.9°c
113 - June 13th

First time in here, the colder water was nice.

Rydal 26.3°c
112 - June 10th

Computer says HOT!

Buoy 13 22.9°c
111 - June 8th

The lake is churned up a bit.

Loughrigg Tarn 23.4°c
110 - June 7th

Mermaning with beautiful mermaids!

Capernwray 19.1°c
109 - June 6th

Pre swim before the Tri

Brothers Water 21.9°c
108 - June 5th

Oh so clear!!! Great for photographs!

High Force 16.1°c
107 - June 5th

Further down in a more swimable pool.

High Force 16.9°c
106 - June 5th

A small pool for a first time wild swimmer.

Rydal 22.9°c
105 - June 3rd

Swimming with the memaids of Buoy 13

Coniston 22.6°c
104 - June 3rd

Warm swim to get fresh after a day's shooting at Lakeland Trails.

Fellfoot 22.4°c
103 - June 1st

Agh smelly and algae, but did some freediving with success.

Boretree Tarn 23.8°c
102 - June 1st

Very warm! A few leeches and not so easy to get to but overall quite lovely.

Gurnal Dubs 19.5°c
101 - May 29th

Yay cake!

Gurnal Dubs 20.7°c
100 - May 28th

100th Swim of the year!

Waterhead 19.1°c
99 - May 28th

Swim with Suzanna Swims

River Sprint 17.8°c
98 - May 27th

Warm river time after seeing a friend

Gurnal Dubs 17.4°c
97 - May 27th

Front crawl in the windy water

Potter Tarn 16.6°c
96 - May 27th

The little fish are hungry.

Buoy 13 17.8°c
95 - May 26th

Bobbing around on my own to make my skin feel good.

Rydal 19.3°c
94 - May 25th

Charcoal sausages!

Gurnal Dubs 17.8°c
93 - May 23rd

A bit windy and a lot of little fishies.

Secret River 18.9°c
92 - May 22nd

Warmer and more sedate than the last four pools :)

Secret River 16.4°c
91 - May 22nd

As the last one but another pool!

Secret River 16.2°c
90 - May 22nd

Another deep waterfall pool :)

Secret River 15.8°c
89 - May 22nd

Playing around under a beautiful waterfall.

Secret River 15.8°c
88 - May 22nd

Found a very small pool on the top of a waterfall!

Buoy 13 17.3°c
87 - May 20th

Sun bow :)

Holme Crag, Windermere 17.8°c
86 - May 19th

The beautiful taste of wild swimming :-)

Loughrigg Tarn 18.6°c
85 - May 17th

It's very clear in here!

Holme Fell Reservoir 18°c
84 - May 17th

Swimming with the tadpoles

Blea Tarn 17.4°c
83 - May 17th

We came before the photographers did.

Gurnal Dubs 18.6°c
82 - May 15th

Just being a merman in the warm water :) so beautiful!

River Sprint 16.3°c
81 - May 14th

Clear warm water :)

Alcock Tarn 17.8°c
80 - May 13th

Warm, no one in sight and biting fishies!

River Sprint 12.9°c
79 - May 10th

Mindful exploring a new section of river

Windermere 15.1°c
78 - May 7th

Swim with Suzanna Swims on a hot day!

Stickle Tarn 15.5°c
77 - May 6th

Oh the view and it was warm on the south side, cold on the north

Codale Tarn 14.1°c
76 - May 6th

Lots of nice sun rays in the water

Easedale Tarn 14.0°c
75 - May 6th

Swim to the island

Low Dam 12.6°c
74 - May 3rd

A bit more fun out of the wind playing around and picking up litter.

High Dam 12.9°c
73 - May 3rd

Swim to the island and back.

Buoy 13 10.6°c
72 - April 30th

Choppy but it felt warmer than it sait it was.

Rydal 12.6°c
71 - April 27th

A beautiful evening with the wild gang :)

Blea Tarn 12.8°c
70 - April 24th

Calm water with a view of the mountains :)

Alcock Tarn 15.3°c
69 - April 21st

An intense 10 second swim with an inbound storm, soaked to the skin on the way home!

River Sprint 15.9°c
68 - April 21st

Swimming in a little pool :)

River Sprint 13.3°c
67 - April 21st

Swimming in my favorite waterfall :)

River Sprint 12.7°c
66 - April 21st

Swimming in a mini gorge :)

Buoy 13 11.3°c
65 - April 20th

Chips, sunshine and great people :)

Loughrigg Tarn 15°c
64 - April 19th

So much sunshine :)

Holme Fell Reservoir 16.3°c
63 - April 19th

The warmest place this year, head under water and some skinny dipping!

Yew Tree Tarn 13.5°c
62 - April 19th

A bit touristy.

Gurnal Dubs 11.9°c
61 - April 18th

First hot day of summer, so we had a party!

River Sprint 9.9°c
60 - April 16th

I fixed my road bike, so went 28kms to swim.

Windermere 8.2°c
59 - April 16th

Warmer than last time I tried going into Windermere.

River Kent 11.4°c
58 - April 15th

The smell of grass and patter of rain drops on the flowing water.

Moss Eccles Tarn 10.5°c
57 - April 14th

Pre swim before Lakeland Trails without socks/gloves :)

High Dam 9.8°c
56 - April 13th

To the island and back :)

Gurnal Dubs 9.9°c
55 - April 11th

BOLTIC WIND! Is the beast of the east still here?

Gurnal Dubs 10.9°c
54 - April 9th

First sunset swim without gloves and socks!

Buckstones Jump 7.7°c
53 - April 7th

Exploring the river, finding awesome pools and getting rained on!

Gurnal Dubs 7.8°c
52 - April 6th

Windy again, warm enough for two lengths which was great, we say a frog underwater!

Waterhead 6.2°c
51 - April 2nd

Windy and wet with Suzanna Swims

Brothers Water 7.2°c
50 - April 1st

Cold again the warmer swims are odd, but peaceful :)

High Force 4.7°c
49 - April 1st

A place we need to swim again in the summer, a lot of fun!

High Dam 8.5°c
48 - March 31st

A much better second swim of the day in happier water.

Moss Eccles Tarn 9.1°c
47 - March 31st

There's a first time for everything and I've been wanting to swim in here for a while.

Buoy 13 6.2°c
46 - March 30th

Easter egg swim!

Gurnal Dubs 7.9°c
45 - March 29th

This swim felt colder than normal... it was windy and the beast three is due.

River Sprint 8.1°c
44 - March 25th

4th dip of the weekend, slighly colder than I had thought.

Buoy 13 7.6°c
43 - March 24th

A very bright sun, bring back the early mornings.

Rydal 7.8°c
42 - March 24th

Too many people around to really enjoy the water.

Buckstones Jump 9.9°c
41 - March 24th

Nearly double figures so a skinny dip it was.

Gurnal Dubs 3.5°c
40 - March 20th

It's good to be back in the water.

Buoy 13 5.7°c
39 - March 13th

To the buoy and back :)

Buoy 13 6.7°c
38 - March 11th

Swan lake :D

Gurnal Dubs 4.4°c
37 - March 11th

Two lengths in just less than 6 minutes, wasn't that cold.

Gurnal Dubs 3.1°c
36 - March 9th

Still ice to break, misty and cold on the skin.

Gurnal Dubs 1.8°c
35 - March 5th

Floating naked on ice :D

Gurnal Dubs 1.8°c
34 - March 4th

Another ice hole before the spring sets in.

Secret Waterfall 1.4°c
33 - March 3rd

My waterfall was snowed over so we made a hole and had a lot of fun!

Bouy 13 5.3°c
32 - March 2nd

A brisky wind, it was colder getting out.

Gurnal Dubs 1.8°c
31 - Feburary 28th

Breaking though 1.5cm ice, great fun!

Blackbeck Tarn 1.7°c
30 - Feburary 25th

Today I made a proper ice hole!

Angle Tarn 1.9°c
29 - Feburary 24th

Walking on 6 inches of ice is the feeling of serenity.

Buoy 13 5.9°c
28 - Feburary 23rd

Frosty morning, peaceful swim on the calm water.

River Kent 6.4°c
27 - Feburary 22nd

First time in a new spot with a good friend, must remember more clothes when it's winter.

River Kent 8.1°c
26 - Feburary 20th

Swimming with a friend, not really going anywhere with the powerful flow.

Buoy 13 4.9°c
25 - Feburary 16th

Another Birthday, another good swim, 15 of us in the lake :D

Gurnal Dubs 2.5°c
24 - Feburary 12th

Cold Birthday Swim! 6 minutes in the water, swimming about 140 meters

Buoy 13 5.4°c
23 - Feburary 9th

Windy and waves, embrace the waves!

Holme Fell Reservoir 4.0°c
22 - Feburary 7th

Thicker ice, some nudity!

Yew Tree Tarn 3.4°c
21 - Feburary 7th

Pre sunrise quest for ice!

Gurnal Dubs 2.8°c
20 - Feburary 6th

5.5 minutes swimming around in the beautiful snow!

Elter Water 4.5°c
19 - Feburary 4th

First time in Elter Water

Birkwith Cave 4.1°c
18 - Feburary 1st

Epic adventure that made me very happy.

Yew Tree Tarn 6.4°c
17 - January 30th

Wamest swim this year, able to say in for longer which was healthy.

Bowscale Tarn 3.8°c
16 - January 30th

Snow on the tops, wind in my face and cool water.

Holme Fell Reservoir 4.5°c
15 - January 26th

Short walk to the tarn on a beautiful sunny day!

Harrop Tarn 2.5°c
14 - January 26th

Beautiful feather ice, swimming for about 4 minutes.

Alcock Tarn 0.9°c
13 - January 20th

Had to break the ice, the swim was amazing!

Secret Waterfall 2.4°c
12 - January 18th

Hidden away in an adventure of snow :)

Secret Waterfall 0.7°c
11 - January 16th

Night + Snow + Waterfall + 0.7°c Water + Gillie + Me = AWESOME!!!

Brathay, Windermere 5.5°c
10 - January 14th

Three minutes in the water for a short swim.

Buckstones Jump 4.1°c
9 - January 13th

Wim Hof Workshop - Cold Expsoure with a bit of swimming.

Buoy 13 6.1°c
8 - January 12th

Swimming to the Buoy and back in 10 minutes!

Gurnal Dubs 1.2°c
7 - January 9th

Breaking the ice to swim today :-)

High Dam 2.5°c
6 - January 8th

2cm thick ice cracking dip, a very exciting day!

Yew Tree Tarn 2.4°c
5 - January 8th

2cm thick ice cracking dip, a very exciting day!

Blea Tarn 3.2°c
4 - January 7th

Had to break some ice for a focused two minute swim.

Coniston 6.1°c
3 - January 6th

Warmer sunset swim, very happy after an amazing day out.

Esk Falls 3.0°c
2 - January 6th

Very windy sunny wild swim adventure, need to go back!

Gurnal Dubs 3.8°c
1 - January 1st

New Years Day - 4 mins in the water :-)

© James Kirby