Wednesday, August 18, 2010

swim calculations

Here's what I figured today.

The yellow line is what I'm swimming now - across the cove and up the shore and back again, without stopping. I do a little jag to avoid a big kelp bed, which is scary to swim over without goggles, because it gets all tangly and touchy and crabs hang out all over the kelp.

The big red line represents that same amount of distance stretched into a straight line.

So I can almost swim out to Entrance Island (but not make it back safely), if no freighters / ferries hit me (it's a big-ship corridor, but only gets used 6-8 times a day). I've seen photos of killer whales in that channel as well. Plus 1 knot currents depending on the tide, and colder water. Not safe, I'll likely never try unless a kayak is with me (but I sure do think about it a lot).

I think I can make it along the sheer cliffs on the West side of the island now, though. I've never swam that entire distance yet, but the first half is mostly rock climbing, so the second half is the nonstop swim. I've been looking at it carefully whenever I take the ferry. I'll likely do that with a kayak spotting for me, too.

My new daily swim plan is to swim from my cove right out to the far Northwest tip of the Island, where the red line to Entrance Island starts. Then back. If I can do that, I might make a go for Entrance Island before September, when the water starts to cool off. There and back would be about two kilometers of swimming, taking currents into account.

I was thinking today that I should buy a marine chart to get the currents in the area, and start timing myself so I can calc. how fast I swim, so I can plot vectors and figure out where I'd have to swim towards to hit Entrance Island. (You wouldn't want to swim right towards it if there's a current, because you'll be pulled away. Instead, you want to swim on a different course so you're pulled right towards the Island if your calculations are right.)

I'm also thinking about getting a diving knife, just to give me some parity with the seals. I would never stab one unnecessarily, but if I got bit or was being held underwater, I'd like to be able to bite back.

Even writing about this stuff puts a big grin on my face. What kind of bizarre hobby am I making up here?

1 comment:

  1. Wow, exciting but crazy at the same time! I'm sure you can do it!