Someone correct me if I'm wrong, do you know how So End feels about wet suits? The Dolphin Club next door doesn't like them and doesn't want them in there club house. Check with them and see what there rules are. I think you need to make it to Aqua Park in 45 min. or you'll have too much trouble with the current. I've never done the swim but I've wanted to and looked into it. I've swam up there and talked with them about it. He's right the Shark Fest fills up really quick. This is unrelated but I did a swim there at Christmas, 51 degrees, without a wet suit. That was my coldest swim, to see if I could do it.
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Thanks for the advice. I will be doing the Alcatraz Invitational, put on by the South End Rowing Club, 09/08/2012.
Right now I am swimming in a pool, 5-6 times a week, about a mile each day. In april, I will buy a suit and start swimming at their club on the weekends, to start getting used to it. As a former surfer, I feel comfortable in open-water. I am also practicing techniques is the pool; breathing from both sides, sighting, relaxed strokes. I am hoping to build endurance/lose weight over the next few months, then REALLY start training in April.
I have done it twice. I did one swim with a small group, the area we jumped off at is called the "potato patch" and was a little scary. Some people got back in the boats and were brought forward to calmer waters. I chugged through it but did have an anxiety attack, once I got into calmer waters and got my rythm I enjoyed it tremendously. At one point stopped and the view of both bridges from in the water was terrific. Swim world is a great swimming organization and they hold public drop-in coached swims at Aquatic Park where you can get all your questions answered and pick up tips: http://waterworldswim.com/
The second swim was with Sharkfest which was also fun, a couple hundred people (sells out fast). You go out on Blue and Gold ferry and jump and swim to Aquatic Park. Jumping off the ferry was the hardest part.
My best advice is to be sure you do a lot of open water swims in the bay to prepare and get a good wet suit......it is cold!
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