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Swim Around The Rock

6:15am Sat 10th Aug 2019
Agave Trail, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA
Swim 3.6mi

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Tickets $405–$440

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From the organiser

Join us for this round trip Alcatraz swim! This swim is a great challenge for fast swimmers that requires a strategic race plan to swim the 3.6 mile course with tides and fast currents around Alcatraz. This is also an excellent event to help prepare for longer open water endurance competitions. Some of the best open water swimmers at the national level compete in Swim Around The Rock.

This swim starts off the beach of St. Francis, and you'll swim along a fast and exciting current. But as you make your way clockwise around Alcatraz, that's where the real challenge begins - you'll have to navigate not only around the prison, but through the currents as you make your way to Aquatic Park. A challenge you won't forget for sure!

This event is for experienced open water swimmers only. This swim will not only require swimming strength and open water experience, but expert ability in navigating a winning course with complex currents. This is easily our most difficult bay race, even more so than Bridge to Bridge 10K. If you need advice, support, and coaching for this swim, Water World Swim can help.

Distances in this event

  1. 3.6 miles

    Swim 3.6mi
    6:15am Sat 10th Aug 2019
    $405–$440
    Tickets available
Travel

Transportation:

San Francisco is a walker’s heaven! Many locals get by on foot or bike, taking advantage of the city’s endless scenic charm and pedestrian nature. Rent a City Bike or from Blazing Saddles, or just wander around on foot. But options with four wheels or rail are good too!

Renting a car can be useful, especially if you are staying at a hotel that includes parking facilities. If gives you the freedom to explore the city and drive down famous Lombard st, across the Golden Gate Bridge, through the beautiful Presidio, and more!

However, be aware that street parking in San Francisco is notoriously expensive and often very hard to find. You will have to rely on parking lots in most parts of the city, which can run up to $50 for flat rate parking for a few hours, and do a lot of walking.

Thankfully, if you’re not interested in renting a car, there are plenty of stress-free options to help you get from A to B.

Cheapest airport trip: Take BART
BART is the Bay Area’s train network. It is about $8.40 to come from the airport into San Francisco. It won’t take you to many parts of San Francisco itself, but it is the cheapest trip to and from the airport.

FROM SFO Take any train from the airport to the city – check the map for your stop. For reference, Powell St. Station is closest to Union Square.

FROM OAK Take the Daly City line train right into San Francisco.

Local favorite: use a rideshare service
Hated by cab drivers but loved by many San Franciscans, taking an Uber or Lyft can be less than half the price of a cab with the fee paid automatically from a credit card. Try the pooling service and it probably won’t cost much more than a bus ticket. They run at all hours – including at the early time you’ll need to get to check-in – and you can be picked up from anywhere. Just download the app, enter credit card info, set the pick up point, and go!

Taking MUNI (buses and trams)
It is a visitor’s rite of passage to take a cable car! Few San Franciscans take the cable cars as they are slow and expensive ($7 a ride) but they are a novel way to see iconic parts of town. Buses and the metro (trams) at $2.75 a ride are the cheapest way to get around town, and can often be the most convenient.

If you wish to take MUNI, use Google or 511.org to plan your trip. Fares can be paid on board (exact cash amounts only), or ahead of time by loading a Clipper card, which is reloadable and can be purchased and loaded with cash value at any Walgreens pharmacy (generally always within a few blocks of you). It can be swiped to pay for MUNI, BART, CalTrain, and more.

Local favorite: use a rideshare service
Hated by cab drivers but loved by many San Franciscans, taking an Uber or Lyft can be less than half the price of a cab with the fee paid automatically from a credit card. Try the pooling service and it probably won’t cost much more than a bus ticket. They run at all hours – including at the early time you’ll need to get to check-in – and you can be picked up from anywhere. Just download the app, enter credit card info, set the pick up point, and go!

Classic transport: take a cab
Cabs are a novel sight nowadays with the prevalence of rideshare services. While most cab drivers technically take credit cards, don’t be surprised if the cab driver denies you a ride because you don’t have cash. The fees the drivers must pay to handle credit card transactions are high and many will avoid them. To and from SFO will cost you about $60-70. OAK may be higher depending on bay bridge traffic.

Kit List

What about goggles?
Many out there in the market, the most recommended are those made out of silicone, and CLEAR. They are flexible and easy to adapt to the shape of your face. Wash them with warm water the day before and mold them to your face, before race day or before swimming in open water. Anti fog drops can assist in visibility.

What type of wetsuit should I buy, and can I wear a short sleeve suit?
You can rent a wetsuit from Sports Basement and the rental price will go towards the purchase should you decide towards the purchase should you decide to invest in one. Get a wetsuit that fits you perfectly. At Sports Basement they have assigned personnel to help you make the best selection for your body type. It’s also good to get some Body Glide to prevent chafing around the neck.

Is a diving or surfing wetsuit okay for swimming?
No, they are designed for diving and surfing only. Wearing one for swimming can be tiring, as they are more stiff, and can also lead to stress and injury, especially on shoulders.

Are booties ok for swimming?
No, they usually fill up with water, weigh you down and do not keep your feet warm. You can wear the water socks inside your zoomers and they can hold in heat for short distances.

FAQs

What should I bring with me to Aquatic Park?
Come ready with your wetsuit up to your waist, or fully set and warm clothing on top. Bring a towel and change of clothes, goggles, thick silicone or a hood, earplugs, warm cap and something warm to drink after the swim is nice. A coach will watch over your belongings while you swim. Please do not bring valuables to the practice. If this is your first time, bring signed waiver. This waiver is good for the whole season.

What is the water temperature?
At the top left of any page on the website, you can check current temperature ranges.
November – March: Approx. between 49-55F (9.0C-13C)
March – October: Approx. between 55-62F (13C-16.5C)
In the last two years in a row, we have seen August-October water reach up to 67 degrees Fahrenheit. This may be becoming a part of the new temperature range.

Why do I need earplugs?
If the middle ear gets cold, it affects your equilibrium, so that when you leave the water after you swim you become dizzy. Earplugs help keep your head warm and protect you from bacteria in the water.

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