What Feels Colder?  What Feels Warmer?

What Feels Colder? What Feels Warmer?

The open water swimming community is an understated global resource with an incalculable amount of cumulative experience.

The worldwide community is a treasure of mankind’s collective knowledge about open water swimming where people share information and have developed camaraderie that is ubiquitous and genuine.

Open water swimmers swimmers travel the world, looking for different bodies of water to ply their trade.

When an open water swimmer looks at a lake or ocean, it is remarkably different than terrestrial-minded athletes. As they gaze upon the water, the mind of an open water swimmer pulsates with questions: What is the water temperature? How far to that point? Are there any currents? What kind of marine life exists? Do I have time to get in a swim?

Some, like James Pittar, a 2009 honoree of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, adventurer Lewis Pugh, the venerable Michael Read and the incomparable Kevin Murphy, have traveled the world enjoying the sport and challenging themselves in hundreds of bodies of water. Open water swimming is a lifestyle and a mindset that is unique and remarkably healthy, enjoyable and liberating.

Based on the community’s wealth of experience, we wonder if the open water swimming community feels any relative difference in water temperature in different bodies of water. That is, assuming all the water and weather conditions are equal (wind speed, air temperature, cloud cover, sunlight, humidity, water depth, water clarity), does the same water temperature (e.g., 15°C or 59°F) feel differently in a fresh-water lake, a fresh-water lake at altitude (over 1,500 meters or 4,921 feet), a sea (e.g., Mediterranean or the Caribbean), a lido or outdoor pool, a river, the Pacific Ocean or the Atlantic Ocean?

You can provide your answers in the survey at The Daily News of Open Water Swimming:

In your experience, if the water is 15°C (59°F) and all the other environmental factors are the same, what body of water feels the coldest?

1. A fresh-water lake
2. A fresh-water lake at altitude (over 1,500 meters or 4,921 feet)
3. A sea (e.g., Mediterranean or the Caribbean)
4. A lido (outdoor pool)
5. A river
6. The Pacific Ocean
7. The Atlantic Ocean

In your experience, if the water is 25°C (77°F) and all the other environmental factors are the same, what body of water feels the warmest?

1. A fresh-water lake
2. A fresh-water lake at altitude (over 1,500 meters or 4,921 feet)
3. A sea (e.g., Mediterranean or the Caribbean)
4. A lagoon
5. A river
6. The Pacific Ocean
7. The Atlantic Ocean

Photo courtesy of Aqualoja.

Copyright © 2010 by Open Water Source
Steven Munatones