By: Blonde Two

After an idyllic summer, November in Devon turned out to be a month of storms, disrupted travel and copious seaweed. We have had seaweed everywhere, on the railway lines, across the road, on my bathroom floor and yes… all the way up… there!

Finding a safe spot in which to partake in swimming during the winter storms can be tricky but we are lucky in Torbay and have a few sheltered corners that can usually be relied on to provide a smallish, but calm patch of water in which to bathe. Or maybe that should be wallow because calm patches tend to catch the brown, slithery stuff during storms and, when surrounded by seaweed, it can be tricky to swim.

My swimming friends and I have however had some fun. We have done a fair amount of floating-chatting, we have watched the sea swans surf indignantly and accidentally onto the beach, we have exfoliated our feet, ankles and occasionally bottoms as the waves have dragged out past us and we (well I) have had the not-so-pleasant experience of a dead eel slithering around our ankles.

The sea can be a dangerous place in winter and I would recommend caution as well as:

Knowing your area, tides and local currents
Swimming with friends
Testing the waters and beach carefully
Always having an exit plan
Never jumping in
Being wary of invisible waterborne objects after storms
Sitting in the shallows if deeper water is looking dodgy
Just occasionally saying, ‘not today’


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