Lago d'Orta Marathon Swim - questions, and using a volunteer kayaker

Hi all, I searched but couldn't find a discussion of this event yet.

http://www.swimchallenge.it/index.php/en/lago-d-orta-marathon-swim

Anyone considering? Loving the idea, and while not sure it can work this summer, would love to hear more from anyone in the know.

A question if I could make it work: I have always considered this swim business to be a team sport. I do the swimming, and my trusty kayaker (aka husband) does the rest. Basically, all the other work designed to keep me alive and happy while we are out there. Feedings, reading where I am mentally and physically, and making me laugh when I really need it, and of course, giving me treats when he can see that it's time for a gummy bear or two.

He's also a hell of a navigator and has gotten me through some really tricky stuff. Basically, I haven't been able to imagine doing this crazy sport of ours without him in the boat next to me.

If I could make this swim work, it would be just me kayaking and I would have to rely on the volunteer kayaker route, something I have never done.

What do you all think? For those who've used volunteers, how was it? What kind of instruction did you give them or wish you had given them? What about doing this in another country where a language barrier could be an issue?

Anyone? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Thank you!

Comments

  • SeanSean Member

    Firstly, i had no language barrier. I was put in touch with my paddler via email a few days prior to my race. she had a lot of questions as it was her first time (and mine too). the main things we cleared up were: - meeting point at start of race - paddler is navigating, swimmer following - planned route to avoid strongest currents - position of kayak in relation to swimmer - how to feed - time of feeds

    This looks a nice swim, and whilst i can't do it this summer, i'd consider it next year as preparation for my EC swim

    Solo
  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member

    OMG, another race for my bucket list. Grazie, @SydneD

    SydneDJenAtortuga
  • LynneLynne Member
    edited March 2016

    @SydneD, I've done the Lago Orta one-way, 14km a number of times (one of the swims in the Oceanman series). It's a great swim, I just couldn't imagine turning around and going back... Graeme Schlachter (ZimHippo) is doing it this year, it is the inaugural event, you should get in touch with him. Stefano who is organising the event speaks good English so I'm sure you can contact him and discuss your concerns.

    SydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    Hi Lynne, Thank you so much! I've already reached out to Graeme, who I know from Zurich. And Stefano was the one who reached out to me to ask if I was interested in doing it, so I've already been in contact with him too. Glad to hear from someone who has been in those waters! Love the idea of going down and back!! Hmmm---this is looking like a distinct possibility!! Thanks!

  • FrancoFranco Charter Member
    edited March 2016

    I have done many swims with volunteer paddlers and have had mixed results. Some of the best experiences have been with first timers so being a seasoned volunteer isn't always that important. The key thing is to kindly let them know your expectations regarding feeds and exactly where you would like them to be positioned during the swim. I have found that keeping them where you need to sight can be the biggest challenge. I consider myself low maintenance regarding feeds and any other needs. I know others who are very particular about changing feeds and feed schedules throughout a swim. The more complicated your routine, the more potential for problems. Not all paddlers wear a watch so I would bring an extra just in case to time feedings. I have even brought them as a thank you gift for the paddler. I have also had several swims that for different reasons my paddler disappeared for a period of about 20 minutes to a few hours. Unexpected things happen during long swims and I always carry some gel packs in my suit for those types of situations. You will be happy you did if something comes up and you need fuel.

    This swim looks pretty simple to navigate so I doubt that would be an issue. I don't think the language will be an issue. My Italian is lousy but I never seem to have any issue communicating with people when I am there. Other than my aunt and uncle who are in their 90's, most of my relatives speak English to some extent. I don't hear well and with earplugs in, I have difficulty with any verbal communication during a swim. I find that you can usually signal with hands to get your point across. I wouldn't worry about it. I keep envisioning you getting someone like the Blue Grotto fellows in Capri.

    I have never been to that part of Italy and it looks like it could be a nice opportunity in the future. Thanks for sharing and good luck if you are able to make it happen this year.

    NiekSydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    "I keep envisioning you getting someone like the Blue Grotto fellows in Capri."

    Um. YES PLEASE!!!!! Can I hire that guy to be my kayaker??? :)

    I'm not a particularly difficult feed schedule person. Every 1/2 hour, and my husband gives me a GU or something special when he sees I'm starting to flag a bit. Other than that, throw me my bottle.

    Gifting a watch is a great suggestion. Love that idea!

    Okay, taking next steps....maybe......

    Franco
  • pavlicovpavlicov NYCSenior Member

    @SydneD I got an idea! How about I ask my cousin Petr to kayak for you. It is not that far of a drive for him and you would definitely not have a language barrier? Do you want to ask him yourself? He will be honored! (he is not on this forum).

    SeanSydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    Do you really think he'd want to kayak for that long??? It could be like 9 hours. That's a lot to ask. You know I adore him and would LOVE that!!!!

    pavlicov
  • pavlicovpavlicov NYCSenior Member

    He definitely would. Ask!

  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @Lynne - I am all signed up! This is happening! Yahoo!!

    pavlicov
  • LynneLynne Member
    edited April 2016

    > SydneD said:

    @Lynne - I am all signed up! This is happening! Yahoo!!

    Enjoy! Is now the time I should tell you about the unidentified SLM (Stinging Lake Monster)?

    gregocpavlicovSydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @Lynne Enjoy! Is now the time I should tell you about the unidentified SLM (Stinging Lake Monster)?

    Oh do tell.... ;)

  • LynneLynne Member
    edited April 2016

    Ok then... here is photographic evidence I had three like this. One on my forehead, neck and shoulder. Occured at three different time points during the swim so it's not like I swam through a swarm of something. And how do you get stung on the forehead while swimming crawl. I asked the locals what it could have been and they had no idea, had never seen something like this before.

    Hence... unidentified SLM IMG-20150622-WA0001

  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin

    Hi @Lynne --

    It looks like you tried to link to a Dropbox photo that isn't publicly accessible.

    The easiest solution is upload the photo directly to the Forum:

    • click the blue icon at far left of the Editing toolbar
    • select the photo from your computer
    • it will automatically insert the photo in your post.

    cheers,
    evan

    Lynne
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    I wonder if you had lamprey issues.

    http://hubpages.com/education/Killer-Lamprey-Do-Lampreys-Attack-Humans

    So, um, I am dropping out of the swim right now. :)

    I think John Humenik had this happen at Kingdom Swim. He got grabbed a few times. Apparently, you twist and pull to get them off.

    Shivers!!!

  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsCharter Member

    SydneD said: I wonder if you had lamprey issues.

    http://hubpages.com/education/Killer-Lamprey-Do-Lampreys-Attack-Humans

    We got an in-house lamprey expert @KarenT
    She loves those critters :)

    SydneDemkhowley

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!

  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    Oh dear....What have I gotten myself into ? ;)

  • KarenTKarenT Charter Member

    If I were attacked by one of these, it's doubtful that I would have the presence of mind to "twist and pull" it off. But thanks for that thought just as I'm heading out for a 10km sea swim.

    SydneDNiektimsroot
  • LynneLynne Member

    Yeah, each sting had a couple of teeth in them which I had to extract with a pair of industrial pliers

    SydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    Wow! That sounds like lamprey. How long was it painful for? I've had a man-o-war sting during a race, and then did Alligator Light with full body jelly stings so I'm not too freaked out by things. But teeth??? Gulp!!!

  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    I just don't want to have to stop because of anything like that. Guess I'll be adding extra ibuprofen to my race bag!

  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsCharter Member

    The only ones that seems to have trouble with L. are women! Good thinking. I prefer them also. ;)

    Coincidence? B-)

    SydneD

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!

  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @IronMike - In my own mind at least! ;)

    IronMike
  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member

    @SydneD, just got a notice that the swim is 10 days away on my FB. So looking forward to hearing about this when you're done. This is a possibility for me next year as it is a short flight from Moscow. I'd also like to hear why @Lynne wouldn't want to turn around. Currents? Lampreys?

    pavlicovSydneDLynne
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @IronMike I will absolutely be happy to share ANY information I have after it all. I am so excited to get to Italy next week! Can't believe I'm leaving a week from today.

    And, um, I can't hear you. Because my hands are over my ears every time you say Lampreys... ;)

    Sarah4140IronMike
  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member
  • JaimieJaimie NYCCharter Member

    No lampreys, I am verrry happy to report - @SydneD and I had a great time. Very beautiful, enjoyable, and well organized swim!

    IronMikeSydneDsuziedodsrosemarymint
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @IronMike It was a great day!! I am working on a race report but just got back last night so I'm, um, a teensy bit sleepy.... :)

    And so great to spend time with @jmm234 and other marathon crazies! My mom said she just loved meeting the community and feeling so included and welcome. That was one of the nicest things for me.

    Okay, off the screens so I can stay awake...

    suziedodsIronMikerosemarymint
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member
  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member

    Lovely read, @SydneD! ;)

    Seriously, though, reading your post after reading the Hippo's was very instructive. Did the organizers provide that kayak for Petr, or did he bring it?

    SydneD
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    In all honesty, the kayak situation was a bit of a mess. There were no clearly identified boats and we basically had to pull our own boats from a rack. Originally, our boat belonged to Hippo but they knew it wouldn't work for Audra's back.

    Poor Jaimie got a double so her partner had to manage that.

    The kayak situation definitely needs to be sorted.

  • IronMikeIronMike Moscow, RussiaCharter Member

    Hopefully I can make this next year and the kayak situation will be figured. Thanks again for the review. Very helpful!

    SydneDsuziedods
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    My pleasure! :)

    IronMike
  • JaimieJaimie NYCCharter Member

    @SydneD - he chose the tandem kayak actually, it was his first choice :)

    suziedodsSydneDIronMike
  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @jmm234 - Wow! Good for him! Of course, it makes sense that you would have a badass as a partner. Because you need someone who can keep up with your awesomeness!! :)

    Jaimie
  • BogdanZBogdanZ Bucharest, RomaniaNew Member

    Fellow colleagues :) I am new on this forum, new to open water swimming (one 10k.. ) and not new to the swimming as a sport :). I am very interested in the 27k swim at Lago D'Orta 2018 and for the time being I have two questions for which I kindly ask your support:

    1.. how much did the registration cost in previous years? + lending the canoe and the person to run the canoe? Where there any other direct costs to attend the event? (of course other than transportation, accommodation :) )

    1. from your experience, does this event in 2018 suffice for registration in the UK Channel Swim, to swim in 2019?

    Many thanks and good luck with your training. Bogdan

    ps: It is very early to think of 2018 but I would like to set it as objective and prepare.

    Solo
  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsCharter Member
    edited September 5

    BogdanZ said: does this event in 2018 suffice for registration in the UK Channel Swim, to swim in 2019?

    CS&PF rules:
    All swimmers taking part in a solo swim must complete a self assessment swim for at least 6 hours in open water at a temperature of 1/ no more than 61°F / 16°C and which is carried out specifically for the purpose or as an 2/ organised event which the Committee considers (in its discretion ) to be a suitable alternative, in either case, which has taken place 3/ no more than 30 calendar months prior to the 1st June in the Year of application.

    1/ only in December, January and February is the temp low enough https://www.yr.no/place/Italy/Piedmont/Lago_d'Orta/statistics.html

    2/ event is held around June

    3/ summer 2019 is less than 30 months from 2018

    BogdanZ

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!

  • BogdanZBogdanZ Bucharest, RomaniaNew Member
    edited September 8

    Thank you very much Niek for the documented response.

    I reckon 1st option is out, as you said, these temperatures are not there in summer time.

    For case 2, organised event is subject to approval by the Committee, if they consider the event to be a "suitable alternative".

    The event would take place after 1st June 2018, I understand it is intended for 21st July 2018, therefore it's after 1st June 2018, but if the race is considered suitable, then i could apply with it for 2020 (many years to pass :) )

    Alternatively for 2019 channel swim I should either find a suitable race before 1st June 2018 or go for the self assessment swim with certified coach, if I'm not mistaken.

    Again, many thanks for the response.

  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsCharter Member

    BogdanZ is there nowhere in Romania that you can swim for 6 hours in cold water?

    What about the organizers of "Cupa Hamsia, la Micul Golf din 2 Mai, Romania" http://cupahamsia.ro
    All you need is an observer and a boat. They might help you with that.
    https://seatemperature.info/april/romania-water-temperature.html

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!

  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @BogdanZ

    Having done the event last year, I would say you are looking at temps MUCH too warm for a qualifying swim. It's a great even though! I loved it and was sad to miss it this year.

    Jaimie
  • BogdanZBogdanZ Bucharest, RomaniaNew Member

    Niek said: BogdanZ is there nowhere in Romania that you can swim for 6 hours in cold water?

    What about the organizers of "Cupa Hamsia, la Micul Golf din 2 Mai, Romania" http://cupahamsia.ro
    All you need is an observer and a boat. They might help you with that.
    https://seatemperature.info/april/romania-water-temperature.html

    Niek, you are right, there are many places such as lakes surrounding Bucharest and the seaside. It is very possible I am not up to date with the registration procedure. Last year I was reading some rules and there was a list of certified coaches to verify the swim. Those coaches where from UK, FR.. etc but I don't recall anyone in the eastern Europe. Might have missed much of the relevant information and I should responsibly :) gather information (at that time long swims seemed impossible) I checked now CSA website and seems there's a representative in Romania, Paul Georgescu who did the swim, and he's close to the organizers of Hamsia, which I attended this year (very happy to see this swim is known by you). I will reach out to him.

    About Lago D'Orta, i was hoping to check multiple objectives (the CS and the swim itself in the lake, which I find great). Swimming the lake is sufficient joy to attend the swim :)

    SydneyD do you recall how much did the registration cost? I will not ask about the kayak/ kayaker lending cost :) as you had Petr (great support and enjoyed your report :) )

    SydneD
  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsCharter Member

    BogdanZ said: I checked now CSA website and seems there's a representative in Romania, Paul Georgescu who did the swim, and he's close to the organizers of Hamsia, which I attended this year (very happy to see this swim is known by you). I will reach out to him.

    Someone who did the Channel isn't automatically a qualified observer. Check if he's ok in the eyes of the CSA.

    BogdanZ

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!

  • SydneDSydneD Senior Member

    @BogdanZ I have looked back through my paperwork and I can't find anything that tells me the price. I even looked at my paypal account! So sorry.

    I do recall, however, that it was around $250? Maybe less? I remember it being strikingly affordable. Not sure if that has changed. And I'm glad you liked the report! I am overdue in doing reports for some other swims as I am still working on my narrative and paperwork for a solo swim two weeks ago.

    JaimieBogdanZ
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