09/03/2012 by Carl Reynolds
At special request for Lone Swimmer. Some pictures of the Isles of Scilly. I went there with Swimtrek back in August 2008. I’d always dreamt of going to the Scillies, but had never made the commitment. The attraction was amplified by the opportunity to join up the major islands and do my first long(ish) swims in the open ocean. I particularly remember the last day – a 3km swim from St Mary’s to St Agnes with a big swell. It seemed like a few metres, but was probably more like one.
If I was to go swimming there again I think I’d self organise with some friends; and here’s how –
1. Contact local fishing charter boats and find out what they know about currents, tides and get outs. Check the boat has a platform, steps on and cover. Then negotiate a day rate.
2. Find a self catering cottage – probably on the main island of St Mary’s. For the very practical reason that there are more shops, pubs and so on. But remember accommodation is limited on the isles and they are very popular in the high season.
3. Make sure we’ve all got the same colour hats and are prepared to rotate sitting on the boat – someone has to for safety’s sake.
4. Agree looping to keep us all as a pod – or go with people who are all of a similar speed.
5. Work out a series of swims, so that you can adapt to the conditions. Get the OS Explorer map 101 (1:25000 scale).
6. Get the ferry from Penzance, as it’s cheaper and the chopper is often cancelled due to fog. Don’t sit downstairs on the ferry, unless you like the smell of puke.