Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Third Beach, Vancouver, B.C.

I swam from Third Beach after a great walk through old growth forest in Stanley Park. The day was really warm, and quite a few people were in the water. Lots of the swimmers seemed to have arrived on bikes, having pedalled around the seawall, as the bike racks were full.

The sand on this beach was much finer than at Kitsilano, and the water seemed to deepen more quickly.  I had an amazing long swim, sometimes just floating looking at the coast and mountains. The ocean was really clear and clean.

I read on the chalkboard outside the lifeguard station that the ocean temperature was 17ÂșC, which is a degree warmer than it was in Sydney a couple of days ago. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Kitsilano Beach

Recently I was in Vancouver, British Columbia, and I walked to Kitsilano Beach for a swim or two. It was a warmish August day, so I swam out to the raft just off the beach. The sand was quite coarse at this end of the beach, and there were enormous (glaucous) gulls pottering along the water's edge. 

There were a couple of lifeguards on duty, though I was the only person in the water at that time. Apparently, they are due to finish their season on Labour Day (September 2nd). The lifeguard chairs in the photo have canopies, and the lifeguard is holding a parasol, so they must take sun protection seriously. 

The beaches around Vancouver have large logs stationed along the sand, presumably for sitting on.

I really wanted to swim in Kitsilano Pool, an outdoor heated saltwater pool along the beach. It is 137 metres long, and has a lap swimming system that takes a bit of figuring out for newcomers. It's very different swimming so many metres in one length, and by the time I'd done 8 lengths, I realised I'd already swum my usual kilometre. It takes me 22 lengths at Wylies Baths, and 20 lengths at Balmain Baths.

There are great views from the beach across English Bay and Burrard Inlet to the mountains in the north.