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Digital Subscriptions > Outdoor Swimmer > January 2018 > FESTIVAL OF SWIMMING


Outdoor Swimmer headed to the Lakes for the Kendal Mountain Festival. By Jonathan Cowie

Meeting strangers in car parks is a peculiarly outdoor swimmer pastime: a quick change under a dryrobe, a shared flask of coffee, and boots on for a muddy walk to the water’s edge. And so, on a chilly Saturday morning in November, we found ourselves in a layby in the Lake District. Any weekend that starts with a dip in Windermere with a complete bunch of strangers is off to a good start, but in a modern twist we all already knew each other from Instagram: “How lovely to meet you in real life.”

Contributing editor Alice and I were in the Lake District for the Kendal Mountain Festival, and were getting into the spirit of the weekend with an early morning swim with the Buoy 13 Swimming Club, a group of friends and swimmers who meet several mornings a week at Millerground to swim to a buoy 200m-ish off the shore of Windermere. Skins and wetsuits, friendships were cemented as we all waded or jumped into the 9-degree water and swam out into the lake.

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About Outdoor Swimmer

Whether your New Year goal is an epic challenge or your first open water swim, our 2018 Race Guide is the pick of the year’s must-do events. Elsewhere in the magazine, we have inspiring stories of more personal challenges: learning to ocean swim, 50 castle swims and a new English Channel record. Plus, advice from Olympians, record breakers and swim coaches on how to max your motivation without going nuts.