Tuesday, May 19, 2009

South Head, Noosa ... lovely days in late season ...

The season is winding down and the fat lady is warming up her tonsils ... two swims on Sunday, South Head (Bondi to Watsons Bay) in Sydney, and Noosa in Queensland ...

It was a lovely day where we were, but how did it go where you were?

Tell us about South Head or Noosa ... click the comments button below to leave your message ...


  1. Noosa was nice. Fiona was not quite herself. Of course this didn’t affect her swimming. It affected her shopping. She didn’t show any symptoms but I knew something was wrong. She didn’t buy anything. I know what you’re thinking and I agree that this is a somewhat unusual double – no swimming and no shopping. But I’m realistic enough to know that it won’t last especially since she has done me the favour of finding a nice little motel that we might book into next year ‑ in Hastings Street – with the obvious benefit of saving me the hassle of driving in from Yandina and trying to find a parking spot in Noosa on race morning.

    Killer was there. He must cover a lot of miles doing all the swims that he does – not only seven or so hours up to Hervey Bay but even Noosa must be three and a bit hours from Murwillumbah. He told me he went to John Konrads’ swim clinic. It leaves open the opportunity for some humorous references but as he told you once, you don’t get called Killer for nothing. Anyway, I would liked to have been there as Konrads was showing Killer how to float properly. Does Killer float in fresh water, you might ask. I didn’t ask but he says he now floats much better. Good enough. And the hotel pool water was 28 or 29 degrees which was a big change from the 20 degrees of the new but unheated Murwillumbah pool. “But some wuzzes still had to get out and warm up in the spa,” he laughed. I didn’t tell him that Miami pool is also 28-29 degrees because I was laughing along with the tough guy.

    The ocean water is still 23-24 but at Noosa it was a bit murky. It still looked stunningly blue as you walked up into the Noosa Surf Club carpark. But can you have too many water safety folks? Maybe ‑ if their shirts are the same colour orange as the marker booeys. Noosa was one of those rare swims where the water was so calm that you could spot the next marker booey as you rounded the previous one. Except that there are now three or four orange blobs in front of you, only one of which is a marker booey. And there are still more of these orange shirts back at the surf club. I have worked out that the quite important USM people are the ones who have radio ear-pieces and microphones while the unpaid volunteers just have the orange shirts.

    Noosa still has its kooky side. That restaurant/cafĂ© in Hastings Street still has its chairs facing the street; the roundabouts go on an on and on and you have to walk from the National Park carpark to the start at Ti-tree Bay in groups of no more than 10-15 although because we were good last year, National Parks said we were able to use the concrete footpath instead of the fire trail. And (this is Qld as a whole rather than just Noosa) the curtains are safe because we won’t be doing daylight saving any time soon.


  2. Oh so true re the Orange shirted helpers,for a poor lady doing only her second ever ocean swim I found it a little disconcerting to be spotting 3 buoys!! Instead on 1, however I enjoyed the swim ,even if my older sister did beat me !! Will have to do a bit more training I think!!

  3. Watsons Bay-Bondi-Watsons Bay May 17th

    Just a note to thank the Race Director, John Fallon and his team for another fantastic opportunity to swim this amazing course.

    I was lucky enough to complete the double, leaving Watsons Bay at 6am and finally returning almost 8 hours later. John was good enough to hold up the start until l got to Bondi and again held up the presentation until l finished to a great ovation at Vaucluse Yacht Club were he feeds and waters all competitors and their families for a small donation to the club.

    For me, this event is the highlight of the season, partly because of the challenge and beauty of the course, but mainly because the efforts of the Fallon family who recognise everyone for achieving their personal goals and not just the winners.

    My highlight was a big orange sun rising as l swam out of Sydney Heads and also the dolphin escort off the Gap on the way back. The lowlight was running into a jellyfish the size of a chair off Diamond Bay. Scared the bejesus out of me.

    Many thanks to Ross my support Paddler who fell off three times and got seasick, and my boat driver Bob who foolishly agreed to my request after too many beers.

    Not that l saw it, but the leading group of solos apparently had a great battle for the first 8kms to Shouth Head where Murph Renford put in the big ones to win by a few minutes.

    Good luck to Murph who competes in the icoic race around Manhattan Island in two weeks. While l am at it, good luck to Chris, my brother and Penny, his wife in the same race. 28.5 miles and 16oC water temp-wow!

    Martin Palfrey


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