With nearly 900 swimmers joining us on the 24th June 2017, the third Bantham Swoosh was a massive success. We held two swims, at dawn and dusk, with some swimmers ‘double dipping’ at both ends of the day.
The break out swimmers for 2017 were the new mothers, who literally did appear to break out of the nurseries and head on down for the dawn swim. We had one mother getting into the water three months after having twins (they themselves spent the morning hanging out with their granny in OSS HQ awaiting her arrival) and one new dad seen bouncing a hungry newborn at the finish line saying ‘have you got any idea when xxx is coming in, the baby is getting hungry?’.
We also had some zero to hero swimmers. Inspired by her new fiancée, who also happened to be last year’s zero to hero, Kaat started swimming at Easter and only admitted after the swim that this was her first time in open water (previous swims had been lido only). She was sick three times but hid it from the lifeguards ‘because I was worried they would take me out and I didn’t want to stop.’ We’re still smiling at that one….
Showing similar levels of enthusiasm – and beginners luck – were our ‘Double Dippers’, who swam at both ends of the day, sunrise and sunset. Here are two of them, Emma Reed and Zoe Ashton, at the end of a long (but satisfying) day. “Thanks to all your super friendly staff for organising a truly brilliant event! Loved my first foray into wild swimming, really inspiring” said Miriam.
One anomaly of the swim was the difference between the number of cold swimmers at dawn and dusk. The dawn swim was predicted to be a few degrees colder, but in the event the warming tent saw around 10 swimmers after the dawn swim, and stopped counting over 100 for the dusk swim. What was that about? Was it about food? We wondered whether the dawn swimmers were better fed and that kept them warmer, and whether dusk swimmers hadn’t had a proper lunch or tea. Was it psychological, having maybe worried more all day, or just coming out into the dark rather than with the whole day ahead? Or was it self selection, that the group most worried about cold had opted for the dusk swim.
With huge thanks to all those who made this such a great success: swimmers, volunteers and supporters. With special thanks to : Alpkit; Clif Bar; Swimcap; Warren’s Bakery, Clipper Teas, Dry Robe, Robie Robes, Bantham Estate & Aveton Gifford Parish Council.
Thanks to Clif Bar, swimmers were given a Clif bar along with a hot drink on the finish line.
Bantham Swoosh swim cap supported by Swimcap.com
Thanks to our friends at Dryrobe, anyone who ended up in the rewarming shelter, wasn’t cold for long.