Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Little Bit Further Along The Swim

I thought that I'd cross another couple of tidal enclosures off my swimming list today. I knew I didn't have time to swim in many, but decided that I'd be happy if I could swim in the three pools remaining west of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The day started with a disappointment.

Tambourine Bay Tidal Pool

This sign greeted me as I walked across the reserve to the pool.

The baths, on the Lane Cove River, are still intact, but don't appear to have been used for quite a while. Time to press on to ....

Greenwich Baths

My photos (taken on a very cheap Tescos USB camera - as always) do not do justice to Greenwich Baths. The situation is pretty spectacular, with the city just across the water. There is a fair-sized sandy beach here too. It was a very hot day, and there were lots of kids cooling off in the shallows. There are lane ropes over near the shark netting, so off I went to try a few lengths of front crawl. Mostly, though, I just floated or duck-dived or enjoyed lazily swimming the Parramatta River.

The water was very warm (and very salty).

Balls Head "Tidal Pool"

This is the view from the steps as I was walking down to what each of my city road maps described as Balls Head Pool. These waters off Balls Head are over the deepest part of Sydney Harbour.

This is what I found - no swimming enclosure at all. Obviously, my maps are well out of date. The steps led down to the water's edge anyway, so I decide to go in for a swim. Carelessly, I cut my feet quite badly on the rock oysters. I swam around for a while in the clear water over sand and rock, until I started to think about blood in the water, sharks in the harbour and no nets. When I couldn't stop the sharky feelings, it was time to get out.

So, another disappointment. Next time, I must go east of the bridge to swim the tidal baths in Sydney Harbour, Middle Harbour and North Harbour. Then, it's on to the ocean rock pools of the north. This could take years.

Still to come:

Sydney Harbour
McCallum’s Pool
Clifton Gardens Baths

Middle Harbour
Balmoral Baths
Balmoral Beach Shark Proof Pool
Northbridge Baths
Garrigal National Park Enclosure
Seaforth Swimming Enclosure
Sangrado Pool
Clontarf Pool

North Harbour
Forty Baskets Beach Pool
Fairlight Beach Pool
Manly Cove Pool
Little Manly Cove Pool
Northern Beaches
Fairy Bower Rock Pool
Queenscliff Rock Pool
Freshwater Rock Pool
Curl Curl Rock Pool
North Curl Curl Rock Pool
Dee Why Rock Pool
Collaroy Rock Pool
Narrabeen Head Rock Pool
Mona Vale Rock Pool
Newport Rock Pool
Bilgola Rock Pool
Avalon Beach Rock Pool
Whale Beach Rock Pool
Palm Beach Rock Pool
Paradise Beach Baths
Clareville Beach Baths
Salt Pan Cove Baths
Bayview Wharf Baths
Hawkesbury River
Illawong Bay Swimming Enclosure
Brooklyn Baths

and possibly one I missed today - Lucretia Baths (I can't find it on the maps, but it's referred to in a Council document).

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