Chilling Out In Glacial Groove

Chilling Out In Glacial Groove

Colin Hill is organizing the first Big Chill Swim in February 2013.

As the organizer, he is also prepping for the single-digit waters by swimming in the top tarn near the top of Old Man of Coniston in the Lake District in England.

Gotta like race directors who are willing to do what they ask of others.

After hiking up to the tarn, both the air and wind temperature were below 0°C while the water was 2°C. Brutal in the best of conditions, but the icy winds started to blow fiercely. “So I only stayed in for 10 minutes as I knew I would get cold when getting changed,” explained Hill. “I had two helpers with me to help get warm clothes on as soon as I was out of the water. It is fun visiting tarns and lakes in the winter for a swim.”

That kind of mentality is increasing common by swimmers from eastern Europe to China. “We have cold water here and I don’t want to stop swimming for the winter outdoors. I swim pretty much every day in a lake without a wetsuit through the winter, so you learn to understand how your body copes with the cold and what your limitations are. I get in and swim hard freestyle and don’t stop till I’m ready to come out.”

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