After the tri on Saturday, Don and I headed out to Lake Michigan. My daughter and her kids and my sister and two of her kids joined us. It was a gloriously beautiful day. One of our favorite spots is at Duck Lake State Park in North Muskegon. On one side of the road is Duck Lake, on the other is Lake Michigan. Take your pick--if the winds are out of the north, as they were that day, the Lake Michigan waters can be frigid, so you can head over to Duck Lake for a quick swim, but still enjoy the scenery of Lake Michigan.
Don headed right into the cold Lake Michigan waters for his legs, as he often does in any cold body of water. After biking 75 that day (to and from my race), he was looking forward to a swim in the icy lake. I say icy because anytime the winds shift out of the north, the water temps plummet. They had been at a high of 78 earlier in the week, practically bath water warm for the big lake! Today, probably closer to 70, if that. After the warm temps at Barlow Lake, where the tri was held, it was a little shocking to me even walking in. But you can't go to Lake Michigan without going in. That's the rule. With the short beach season we have, you don't want to waste a day at the beach just sunning yourself. Still, I was not willing to fully immerse myself that day. Brrr. We did go over to Duck Lake for a swim, however.
Sunday we repeated ourselves and headed for the lake again, this time to Grand Haven State Park, south of where we were the day before. The weather report had shown the water temps that morning, with Muskegon where we were Saturday at a high of 70 and Benton Harbor and South Haven to the far south at a chilly 53! Yikes! The water in Grand Haven was supposed to be around 70 as well, but my body told me otherwise when we finally got up the courage to dive in. OMG! It is not 70! I wished I had brought my wetsuit, but even then I doubt I could have lasted long. I couldn't catch my breath, and with the waves and cold, it got to be too much trying to get a swim in, so I headed back to my chair on the beach. Don went on a ways but quickly returned as well. So I wasn't surprised at all when they showed water temps on the nightly news as being 54! Yes, I can certainly tell the difference between 60 (at Lake Coeur D'Alene) and 54. Its a matter of breathing--or not. It was funny though that my body was not cold after getting out. From experience, I realized what had happened: once my body became exposed to the cold waters, the heat element immediately kicked in and warmed me. I'm not sure how long something like that lasts when you are stranded in cold water, but it works for short term anyway. It wasn't until later that the delayed cold set in and we decided it was time to pack up. A relaxing day, nonetheless. Water has that effect on me, and I suspect on many others. Just being near water and I relax. So I propose moving our office to the beach! Not sure if anyone would get any work done, but we'd all be so mellow! Imagine that for a group of lawyers!