Last weekend we welcomed run-swimmers, runners and swimmers to Barmouth for our second Hurly Burly. With blue skies and calm waters, it couldn’t have been more different to last year’s tempestuous conditions. The crisp sunny weather and rapidly cooling water temperatures of between 11°c and 13°c still reminded us we were definitely at the start of autumn.
170 run-swimmers set off first in dusky light, finishing as the sun rose above the mountains surrounding the Mawddach Estuary, and provided welcome warmth to the chilly hands of supporters, runners and the OSS team. After a quick change and a Clif bar, the swimmers and run-swimmers combined in a sea of swimmers in Barmouth’s Pavilion Leisure Centre for the swim briefing.
Then, in the space of 20 minutes, the entire field of run-swimmers, runners and swimmers started their run and swim from Barmouth to Penmaenpool, in brilliant sunshine to the cheer of their supporters and local residents who came out to support the event, including Barmouth’s mayor, who officially started our first swim.
The Hurly Burly gets its name from the water, the speedy, almost bore-like incoming tide in which the swimmers make their way from Barmouth to Penmaenpool, and this year did not disappoint! Our fastest swimmer, Andrew Wallace (who did the run-swim), finished in 1 hr 21 minutes and 18 seconds, with our most leisurely swimmer taking a mere 2.5 hours. The speed of swimmers meant the feeding station was a little difficult to reach or hold on to for more than a few seconds, with some people missing it completely:
“The feed station was exciting! I was lucky enough to grab a hold of the ropes and get a few jelly babies, but the current there just pulled my legs away. Once letting go I was whipped past, and it was then I finally got the feeling of how fast the flow was!” – Calum Maclean, OSS Ambassador.
Despite the speed, swimmers still managed to admire the view: “I was sad the swim wasn’t longer – the scenery was breathtaking! Despite the cold water I just had to swim with my head up at some points to just take in the surrounding mountains” and with many saying they would be back next year, it looks like 2019 will be a great one!
A fast swim and even faster runners needs a super team that can be make sure swimmers and runners are supported at the start and the end, and the Hurly Burly was blessed with loads of them! Whilst being part of the OSS team is always hard work but rewarding, the 2018 Hurly Burly team were particularly great, managing to be fast, flexible and still smile throughout. A particularly huge thanks to this year’s team, who made it look it easy!
Whilst the blue skies and minimal wind suited many, there were a few hardcore entrants out there who were hoping for something a bit more bouncy…‘I’d kind of hoped the wind would be stronger, and make it wild!’ – Calum Maclean, OSS Ambassador. We can’t predict what 2019 holds, but we will be ready for whatever Wales throws at us!
The Hurly Burly was a great last hurrah for the Outdoor Swimming Society events in 2018, but we are already busy thinking of ways to improve in 2019. If you have any comments or suggestions for the Hurly Burly, our other events, or the OSS in general, please send them to email@example.com
With a potential new swim and the 10th anniversary of the Dart 10k, we can’t wait for 2019 and we really hope you can join us!
Jess Rose, a local photographer, joined us for the Hurly Burly this year and captured the mood perfectly! The full photo gallery can be seen on Google Drive here. Please feel free to download and use photos but please credit the Jess Rose and the Outdoor Swimming Society.
The results for the run-swim, run and swim can be found here. If you think something is not quite right with your result or you just can’t find yourself drop firstname.lastname@example.org an email and we will look into it.
A massive thank you goes to all those who made the Hurly Burly 2018 so brilliant: swimmers, volunteers, water safety team, charity partners and supporters. Special thanks to Alpkit, our long term supporter and event partner.
Thanks also to: Dryrobe; Clif Bar; Clipper Teas for their continued support and for keeping our run-swimmers, runners and swimmers warm and fed, and to Gwynedd County Council and Barmouth Town Council for their support. Thank you to Merioneth Yacht Club, Russ and Kirsty at SUPBarmouth, Barmouth Harbourmaster Glyn Jones, town councillor Gethin Williams, Gethin Corps, Richard and Pat Owen, Paula Tunnadine and countless others who helped make this event such a success. The Outdoor Swimming Society has received the most wonderful welcome to the Mawddach Estuary, for which we are incredibly grateful.
Thanks to our friends at Dryrobe, anyone who ended up in the rewarming shelter, wasn’t cold for long.
Thanks to Clif Bar, swimmers were given a Clif bar along with a hot drink on the finish line.
A key beneficiary of the Hurly Burly is the Outdoor Swimming Society, a not for profit which raises funds for itself via this and other events. We are also extremely proud to support our charity partner: