Photographs at Colt State Park before swim:
Top, l-r: John Forasté, Angela and Todd Lang (photo by Diane Forasté).
Bottom, l-r: John Forasté, Angela Lang and Diane Forasté (photo by Todd Lang).
Date: 9 July 2006.
Distance and route: 3 miles roundtrip (1.5 miles each way) from Colt State Park (Bristol Beach area) to Rumstick Point in Barrington and back again.
Water Temperature: comfortable.
Time: We don't know since no one remembered to bring a watch.
Swimmers: Angela Lang and John Forasté.
Kayakers: Todd Lang and Diane Forasté.
This summer I wanted the adventure and challenge of a few longer open water swims. It seemed wise to make the first open water swim of the season one of modest distance. I contacted Angela who had returned to the Boston area after having spent 2 years abroad with her husband Todd. She and I used to workout together with "Coach" Rich Burrows at Brown's Smith Center pool and have each participated in Save The Bay swims. We also completed a 4 mile open water swim together in 2003 - the longest for each of us at that time. Diane and I bought 2 kayaks last summer making it perfect for her and Todd to kayak for us.
I'd been wanting to do this particular swim for some time. It had extra significance for me knowing that in the 1970s the town of Bristol sponsored a swim from Rumstick Point to the Bristol Beach at Colt State Park (one way) and that, before getting into swimming, I had once photographed the finish for the Providence Journal. We had originally planned this for 24 June, but had to postpone it due to a significant thunderstorm and flooding. We had planned the first swim around the tides, but, anxious not to postpone this swim longer than necessary, decided not to do that for this one and hope for the best. We were fairly confident that the tide would not be a major factor in this area of the Bay. This was also Todd's first kayaking experience. We anticipated the need for wetsuits this early in the season, but, after a few short swims the week before, decided it was not necessary.
Diane and Todd kayaked on either side of us with Angela and me between. Todd's job was to navigate and Diane's to protect our right side. Both were to follow the pace set by the swimmers. This meant that Angela and I would alternate setting the pace. While this worked quite well, we decided en route to have Angela alone set pace with all of us, including me, staying with her. This eliminated any guess work and worked very well.
The water temperature was cool, but comfortable and the water surface good, though mildly choppy off the point. Currents were not a problem, though I think we got a little help on the return trip.
All in all, we had an excellent swim and were very pleased with our entire team. Later, over breakfast, we talked about our next challenge - a 5 mile swim which we planned for the very next week.
Map data ©2006 NAVTEQ from maps.google.com