Dart 10K

Entries open for this.  It's swimming, rather than running and fills up fast, apparently!  A bit pricey at £75, but should be good!

I'm in, anyone else?

Link:  http://www.outdoorswimmingsociety.com/index.php?p=events&s=&id=92



  • Just booked my place! I'm really very excited! P.S., you done any long distance open water? I've done some sea swimming and a 3.8k in teh River Arun last Summer, but this looks amazing and I've been stalking the OSS for months waiting for tickets to go on sale.

  • Hi Snap, longest I've done is the Outlaw swim last year!  Plenty of of time to get some swimming in before the event though!

  • £75!   Blimey

    Does look fun tho !!

  • I'm tempted... not sure about 'brackish' water though! 

  • this is supposed to be good too if you really fancy doing a 10k swim....and a tadge cheaper, well a tenner cheaper anyway image

  • Brackish means a mix of fresh and salt, usually found in a tidal portion of any river. I had to look it up too. I found it tastes ok.
  • You lot are mean, one of them is near me and the other in my homeland - decisions decisions especially as timing wise there's enough time to do them both!

  • I like swimming 10k's. they are the swimming equivalent to a marathon
  • For me it's 3hour (still water) but I'm what you call a fastish slow swimmer
  • It could take me weeks........image

  • I would think you enter the water when it's slack/on the turn, and then get the advantage of the current as the tide goes out. That could knock 5-10 minutes per mile off your still water/pool time.

    And apart from the elites and for most mere mortals, this is one to be enjoyed. For me, spending 2-3 hours face down in a river is pointless and not worth the £75 ticket price. Taking a bit of time to enjoy the swim, company and scrolling countryside? Yeah. That's worth the ticket.

  • Bit far for me, so is the swim. How many inflatable bananas with kids on will you be towing Siggy? image

    If it were closer, I'd support!

  • I grew up playing about on the Dart so its tempting, have rowed, sailed and canoed it so why not swim it! I would be interested to know how they measured teh disatnce & if they advise on what line to take as the shortest distance most certainly won't be the quickest and if the tide is far enough out when you get down around Stoke Gabriel you could walk about 2 miles of it. 

  • DD, I think it starts at the turn of high tide so there's as much water in the River / Estuary as possible!  So, as Snap says!  It's been going for a couple of years now and is getting more and more popular.  
    Only 200 of the 750 places left last night after only the first day of being open!
    Plum, get yourself a lilo and surf down the river!!
    Dusty, as the water's coming off the moor it's always cold so, it's wetsuit compulsory and you can even wear your gimp mask!   
    I'm in as it's just a short drive from where I'm spending most of my time these days!

  • DF, my wife didn't see it that way, as she realised she'd be spending our wedding anniversary sitting on a riverbank - posssibly in the rain.

    But hey! You know what they say: every clou..

  • One of my favourite things about swim events is you never know how fast anyone is. With running, you line up at the start, you size people up, look at their shoes, GPS watches, physique and whatever else. You make a call as to how they'll perform and how you'll stack up against them. You're sometimes wrong but often right.

    Not so with swimming. That bloater standing next to you just happens to have a resting heart rate of 45 and a natural technique that would put an otter to shame. And he/she is going to beat you.

    Last year's Arun river swim was won overall by a female tri-athlete, with second place taken by a 15 year old female. Margins were a full minute and half a minute respectively.

    Great leveller.

  • No she doesn't - I wouldn't dare. This is MY place.image

  • Did this one last year. Nice bit of current at the start. & a great strating system , All on the quayside in your wave (4 waves ranked on speed, slowest first) gun goes & you all file over the timing mat down some steps & away, very civilised. No mass brawl or biff like at a tri start.

    Found navigation difficult last year, all over the river, crashed into rocks twice, tried to swim up a tributory, almost missed the 2nd feed station. & when we hit the tidal bit it was really choppy with a head wind. Its a nice event but I'll only do it again if I thought I'd survive without the rubber. Last year it was about 12 degrees at the start, so too cold for me without insulation, but quite a few go 'naked'. Just about full by now though I think!

  • Event report!  It's a bit long and boring I'm afraid!

    Dart 10k report.  

    This isn’t a ‘race’ report as the organisers don’t call it a race!  Anyway, brief preamble.  

    Training was a bit haphazard, as usual!  I didn’t really start until I came back from holiday in early August, so a month to build up some sort of stamina.  That meant Saturday and Sunday mornings up at 6 as well as Wednesday’s!  Then more swimming on Monday and Wednesday evenings.  I quickly found that although fitness was improving quickly speed seemed to have reached a plateau.  I’ve already entered Nice next year and would seriously like to get under the hour for the swim, so looking at the long term I decided 1:2:1 coaching would help.  Crikey did that show up some bad habits as well as a shoulder issue!  Armed with loads of drills and exercises it was back to training!

    Pre race was very relaxed.  The sun was out and swimming wasn’t due to start until 13.30 with the ‘yellow’ wave.  Nice lay in followed by some porridge and bananas.

    The idea is there are four waves with the slowest starting first and the different waves then setting off at 15 minute intervals.  

    So, wet suit on.  I wasn’t (am not) hardy enough to swim without one on, despite the river temperature being allegedly 16 degrees, although there were about 30 who were!  Damn fools and Englishmen heh!

    Finally called forward on my wave, take a quick gel, and we walked across the timing mat, down the slip way and after a faff getting water inside the suit swam straight out across to the other side and we were under way.  No washing machine.  No biff, kicks, punches or anything!  It was almost ‘Excuse me, do you mind if I swim past you?’ and ‘Terribly sorry to nudge you old boy!’!!  

    I saw ‘Madge’ and Oscar on the bank as I crossed the river, quick wave, but I thought she had missed the wave and shout as there were so many people lining the edge there!

    It was a gorgeous day.  After some heavy rain on Friday and through the night the current felt quite strong and the following wind was a bonus as well! 

    The early part of the river isn’t especially wide and it was a bit crowded being herded to one side by the body boarders and event boats.


  • Everything was going well, feeling strong and I was concentrating on my stroke to get as efficient as possible.  Even the water didn’t feel too bad and I was warming up all the time, especially when my bladder let go!!  It’s not as difficult learning to pee whilst swimming as it is doing the same thing whilst cycling!!  I think I like my bike too much to pee all over it anyway!  

    At about 3K was the first ‘feed station’.  I was surprised when it came up so fast, but as I reached into the leg of my wetsuit to retrieve a stashed gel I felt the first twinge of cramp.

    I shouted to another swimmer I recognised.  She’d tied a rubber duck to the straps of her goggles and I found myself staring at this object at the back of her head!!

    I’d swum the river a fortnight ago and had been surprised at how salty it was.  I’d made the mistake of not bothering to shave on the earlier swim and I seemed to have spent a lot of time rasping my tongue over the stubble on my chin.  This had left me with a seriously sore tongue.  It almost felt like I’d had something caustic in my mouth so kept on wiping and cleaning the tip of my tongue.  It took days to recover from that so I’d made sure I had a really close shave early on.  Anyway, after necking a quick gel there was no time to waste.  I’d already overtaken quite a few of the yellow hats from the earlier wave and felt I was up in the top 50 of the red wave.  Everything going well apart from the twinges in my lower legs which meant I had to curl my feet and toes back creating drag.  The twinges turned into full cramps about 1k before the second feedstation.  They weren’t helped by the feeling of dragging your fingers across the top of the bottom of the river in parts.  Obviously this is what swimmers in front of me were also doing as the water, which was brown and thick to start with and was no almost thick enough to chew!!  It looked like a chocolate milkshake, if only it tasted like one too!

    The second feed station was on a raft in the middle of the river.  I was pleased to see that as it meant we were well over half way!  Another gel, more cramp and with Meldy’s voice ringing in my ear ‘Don’t be shit Siggy‘ i was on.  My arms and shoulders were getting very sore by now, but a quick chat with one of the surfer event crew, who told me we only had 2K to go and it was 3.30 got me to believe I might make just over two hours for the swim!  I went through a low patch when I felt I had completed at least 2k after my chat with the surfer and the finish was still not in sight!  Blue hats from the later wave were now coming past me as if I was swimming doggy paddle too!  But it I could see quite a few boats moored in the middle of the river and surely that must be the last bend and then the finish.

    Sure enough the jetskis were herding swimmers around the bend and there was a huge crowd on the river bank.  A few more strokes and I was ankle deep in sludge!

    Helped across some rocks and up to the timing mat and that’s it done!  

    A quick time check with a volunteer who said it was 4.10 and, so if we started at 1.45 that would mean a 2.25 swim for 10K!  I’d been hoping for any time between 2 1/2 and 3 hours  so I was well pleased with that!  

    However, a text today confirmed that the time across the mats was actually 2.35.29.  But I’m still pleased with that!  Take off the ‘Dustboy’ faffage at the start and crawling over the stones at the finish and it would have been closer to 2 1/2!

    It’s a good base for the swim training to come over the wint

  • Would I do it again?  Probably, but only if it was cheaper!  £75 for this is a too pricey!

    But for those nervous about open water swimming or 'mass' starts it would be great!

    It is well organised and very friendly event though!


  • Great race report!

    The rough tougue is common in salt water.  I know that it was only brackish in th Dart, but if you aren't used to it then salt water can do a lot of damage.

    Open water swimmers tend to be 'nicer' in the water than triathletes as a rule.  Swimmers are more confident in their swimming ability generally and therefore don't panic and thrash as much.  Swimmers are also capable of swimming in a straighter line so tend to avoid hitting each other.

    2:30ish is a fantastic time Siggy!  Well done and if you want to do some cheaper long distance swimming events, drop me a line and I'll recommend some.

  • Thanks SC!  I'm not a 'cold water' swimmer though!  I had two silicone hats on yesterday and was just about right!

    The lead swimmer completed it in about two hours!!

    Just goes to show how strong the current and following wind were I guess!!

  •  I had my time texted to me. I was in the yellow wave which went off I think just after 1:30. I phoned my wife at 4:35 after I'd changed, so you would surmise I took well under 3 hours. STS chip time says 3:32. Siggy, I think there has been a prob with the timing system so don't take it as gospel.

    This was my first over IM distance race and I had a great time. I will do it next year.

    Incidentally, I don't think it's particularly expensive given what they lay on and the amount of safety support they provide. 

  • Soggy,wide you do SDW50 last year?

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