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Swim in Berkeley Marina - 3.5 Miles

Posted Sep 05 2010 8:28pm
After Austin's tournament at UC Berkeley, we went down University Ave all the way over I-80 to the bay.  Josh told me to look into Berkeley Aquatic Park.  It turned out to be more of a pond that might have been fresh, which was right next to the bay.  Didn't look half as exciting as the bay on the west side of the freeway.  The bay had a Marina and I saw lots of wind surfers.  I got out of the car and walked over to the Boat rental office.  There was already a girl in there saying that she was going for a swim.  So I ran back to the car and got my ear plugs and goggles and went back over there.  I asked the lady in the office where to sight to and if there were any particular places to avoid.  She said anywhere on the the other side as long as I stayed clear of the Marina on the south end directly across cause boats come in and out of there all the time and might not see me.  


It took me 50 minutes to get over there.  The waves were coming pretty hard from the west.  Probably 5 foot swells.  When I got to the other side I got out all the way, and then started to swim back.  It seemed tougher coming back, like the waves were higher cause I ended up swallowing more water.  Not too bad though.  Total swim 3.54 miles at best, but more likely just under four.  It took me 1:50.  I was sighting for a specific building on the other side, and then on my way back, a bunch of trees.  I'm sure I was all over the place, but roughly straight.  

The sun was starting to get near the horizon.  I was taking WAY longer than I thought.  When I finally got back ALL the windersurfers were gone and I was the ONLY one left on the beach.  In fact, someone had stolen my old shoes and shorts (to cover my nakedness, well at least my speedo).  There were a few kids off I thought I heard laughing and directing their looks my way as I was limping through the sharp rocks down the path to the parking lot.  When I got back to the car I had some pretty deep cuts on my feet from the sharp rocks.  Total time in the water 1:50.  

Being this my first swim in the ocean I was pleased.  The salt water was NOTHING compared to GSL so I was glad to have exposure to the GSL.  I was a little nervous about sharks, but not too bad.  Being all by myself was the thing that bothered me about sharks.  I was a mile from the shore in some areas and could have easily been eaten to the bone, but the kind lady I met at the marina office would have said something about sharks if there was an issue before, so I was just battling my creative mind and exposure to too many shark flicks.  In actuality the only thing that bothered me was this large grey seagull that would come swoop in and I could see it hover about 5 feet directly above me.  I was thinking it was going to jump down on my back a couple of times.  After about the 5th pass where it would come and hover, I turned on my back and yelled "You wanna piece of me!" and then growled as meanly as I could.  It flew off and never came back after that.  


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