Play GTA the OWS way

As we tick down to just five weeks to go to the RNLI Myrtleville-Church Bay swim on July 4, 2015, we’re going back to 2011 for the always popular OWS GTA (Guess The Ass) competition! Go on, guess, who could it be?

Competition entries on an e-postcard or interweb wire-telefax thing to

Actual entries – i.e. to get your ass entered for 2015 – can be submitted here.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Mystery man makes a splash as he enters the water at the start of the RNLI 2k Open Water Swim in Crosshaven in 2011 (pic Howard Crowdy)

Secret training camps in North Korea-Cork

Disturbing rumours have reached Myrtleville of the emergence of a shadowy cult practicing black arts in “freshwater” camps.  Original correspondence indicated the location could be North Korea, but we now believe it is more likely to be North Cork.

The motives of the organisers and active recruiters for the camps is unclear, but their targeting of Myrtleville to seek recruits is clearly due to our international fame as the best swim location in the world (unimpeachable source: B. Lynch).  Their motives, however, must certainly contain some sadistic tendencies.   Sadism is really the only explanation for why anyone would willingly exchange this…..

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Myrtleville – where God intended people to swim.

For this…..

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

North Korea/Cork – where God knows why anyone would swim.

For the public good, trusted envoys were dispatched to the secret location to attempt to capture images of the unimaginable activities being engaged in and to warn unsuspecting swimmers from being lured to the dark side.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Undercover agent at the secret location. Practically invisible.

Clear images were difficult to procure as the subjects took flight, splashing wildly to avoid the lens.

A particularly fast disciple who rumours indicate was returning to the scene for the first time in a long period of time.  Other disciples referred to him as "Fish".

A particularly fast disciple escapes the attentions of our intrepid investigators.  Referred to as “Fish”, rumours indicate he was returning to the scene after a protracted absence.

One of the ringleaders was snapped from a distance.  The Klan-esque hooded cloak was a particularly disturbing image noted at the camp. Referred to by disciples as DonCon, camp followers say he is rarely seen without his bucket.

The most disturbing image from the reconnaissance was of the cruel treatment meted out to our own unsuspecting Anne Sheehy.   Anne was tricked into attending the camp by formerly trusted acquaintances who had been brainwashed by the cult.  She was pilloried for wearing The Hat and forced to do underwater jumping jacks in the black, salt-free substance known in the camp terminology as “fresh water”.11243461_10206705370099415_3378020364402246023_oSo – a warning.  Be careful who you listen to and trust when you’re at the beach.  They’re amongst us – plotting, planning, trying to cull unsuspecting swimmers and lure them to the camps to feed their numbers. They’re scheming up competing events to our own “world’s greatest swim” (source, again, B. Lynch) – the RNLI swim.  They’ll use seemingly innocuous words like “fresh” water to lure you in – their plausible patter is designed to make you forget that “freshwater” is, like “pool”, a synonym for “THE GATES OF HELL!!!!!”  Don’t be fooled.

Be Warned!  Be Vigilant!  Together, we can defeat this evil cult.   Viva Myrtleville!!

Last May Monday

Sea temp was down at 11c, which is a bit cooler than the same night last year.  In May 2014, we had gone past 12c and were heading for 13c and over.

Still, it didn’t stop over forty swimmers last night, with lots of smiles.  It might be slightly chilly, but it’s still great.  Our fantastic Siobhan Russell was down again for the pictures. Looking forward to seeing her recovered and back in the sea very soon.

I know it’s unfair to pick on people on this site and I really shouldn’t do it.  Having said that – Gary, seriously, have you even taken to drawing lines on the sand to ensure you get just the right stance width?  All of the Orcas in the picture – excellent work. Gary, though?

Lots of the triathletes are getting their OW training done – chilly or not – as their season really kicks off.  I have to mention the new Orca Open Water suits again – great visibility.


The McCarthy brothers weren’t just getting a swim in, but having a healthy big vs small brother race.


Ronan’s just smiling as younger brother Conor insists he won.


Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

James Makin – looking just a tad embarrassed as Agnieszka Swiatkowska practices her swooning!

Eleanor Fennessy and Rory Coughlan -  becoming regulars.

Eleanor Fennessy and Rory Coughlan – becoming regulars.

Manu Nadal and

Keep swimming & Swim Safe 🙂

Paddling in the Park.

Finbarr Hedderman’s Paddle in the Park went off really well on Friday night.  Great idea to make use of the river closer in to the city.

Don’t forget the next event – the Bulman swim, this Saturday, May 30th.  Click here for entry details.  It’s another qualifying swim for the RNLI Myrtleville-Church Bay swim on July 4th!

Opem water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Marie Watson follows up her first Fountaintstown-Myrtleville 2km with an evening at the Paddle in the Park.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Kieran Murphy and Audrey Burkley – always so dour: never a smile out of them.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

The Hat makes people smile! Brenda Sisk at the Paddle in the Park.

Smiles all round on Friday night.  Well, nearly….

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Angela – such an inscrutable face. So hard to tell what might she be thinking. (Back off now, Gordon, now, now….)

On Saturday, Gary Frost had great plans and organised a 2km or 4km swim.  Really, he organised everything and rounded up the crowds.  Didn’t quite go to plan.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Gary’s crowds…..not even a Gary.

It could be that he got lost.  Some places are very hard to find.  Gary recently drove all over Crosshaven without seeing this small little place.

Very easy to miss - such a small place.

Get entered for The Bulman swim.

RNLI Myrtleville-Church Bay: July 4, 2015: Six weeks to go.

Six weeks to go to the sixth running of the RNLI Myrtleville – Church Bay Swim. Don’t miss this event.  Get swimming and entering.

In the earlier days of the event, there wasn’t a clear distinction between Administration staff and Competitors.

B. Lynch would give the safety briefing, then run to the nearest phone box (tough going from Myrtleville, to be fair) and change in to his superman Orca costume.  Ta Da!!

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Crosshaven swimmers Bernard Lynch, Brian O’Connell, Caroline Fagan and Jane O’Connell all set for the Myrtleville to Church Bay RNLI Sea Swim 2010 (pic Howard Crowdy)

This is great, isn’t it?  Pictures of Bernard in a wetsuit!  Whooda Thunkit?

Get swimming and entering for the 2015 event.  Not to be missed.

Paddle in the Park 2015 tomorrow – Friday 7pm: Lee Fields

Online entries close tonight but Finbarr Hedderman will take entries on the night.

Forecast is good so, get your entries in now.  There are 1km and 2km options.

Entry is just €12, for Cork Lions Club. 

Get out there tomorrow night to get the Open Water Season started, support a great cause AND get your qualifying swim done for the RNLI Myrtleville to Church Bay Swim!

Qualifying swims!

Saturday morning’s swim was fantastic, with newcomers, visitors from Dublin and Australia and several returnees after Winter breaks.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Ruth Deane emerges from hibernation, joining Ann Jordan on her first visit to Myrtleville and Diane Neaves who just isn’t going to let the cold win – going for the wetsuit and cardi look.

A group of fourteen went across to Fountainstown by car and swam back.  Several were doing this trip for the first time and more experienced swimmers went along behind them to encourage and support.  Just how it should be done. I happened to be standing in the water as Marie Watson touched the beach in Myrtleville and her smile was great to see.   It is an achievement and – of course – qualifies you to enter for the RNLI swim on July 4, so get entered! Well done to all.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Are we there yet, are we there yet? Setting off to Fountainstown.

Setting off from Fountainstown

Joshua Wheeler made contact from Melbourne in April to say he was going to be visiting his in-laws in Myrtleville and would like a swim with the group.  Thanks to Anders Inglesten who loaned him a wetsuit.  Joshua might have been cursing Anders as he put his head in the water for the first time, though.  A bit chillier than the current Melbourne temp he said (or “bloody freezing” for short).

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Myrtleville local, Jerry, with son in-law Joshua Wheeler

It really was a case of spot the personalities around the beach on Saturday.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Look, there’s Mike Harris, oh and Gwen Burchell and look, look – that’s yer man Lynch. Who’s that other guy with the cup, though?

OK, OK, Fergal Somerville – the Chanimal – was down from Dublin too.  If you know anyone in Dublin thinking of doing long swims, point them towards Fergal’s new support initiative here for Dublin Distance Dippers.  Keep swimming and always Swim Safe.

RNLI Myrtleville-Church Bay: July 4, 2015: Seven weeks to go

Seven weeks to go.  Don’t miss this event.  Get swimming and entering.

In 2011, the swim was moved to Camden, due to unfavourable weather at Myrtleville.  Judging on the picture below, they bashed down the metal fences to get in there – although that could have been done by Micky, Kenneth or Roy, I suppose.

Then a mad fella in a wetsuit sent them forth into the sea.  Plenty of them looked dubious about it.  Good to see Moz had used a few bottles of fake tan and had waxed for the day.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

RNLI Myrtleville-Church Bay Swim 2011 Safety briefing (pic Howard Crowdy).

To be fair, it must have been bad if even No. 55 was biting his nails in anticipation.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

ECHO SPORT – Event organiser Bernard Lynch shows some of the competitors the route prior to the start of the 2nd annual RNLI 2k Open Water Swim at Fort Camden, Crosshaven (pic Howard Crowdy)

Get swimming and entering for the 2015 event.  Not to be missed.

Bermuda Hat & Hidey Hat.

The Hat is still getting around.  I think it’s supposed to be a Panama Hat and Bermuda Shorts, but this one is a Bermuda Hat.  Modelled by Bonnie Schwartz, this is a verifiable picture of The Hat on tour in Bermuda via NY City.  Getting this picture was a welcome relief after the terrible Sean Foley Silicon Valley (Youghal) Fraud.

Bonnie Schwartz in Bermuda.

Bonnie Schwartz in Bermuda.

Bonnie will be back in Myrtleville on August 21st for her first “Married Lady Swim”, just two days after her wedding.  She’s bringing a group of US swimmers with her, so mark that one in your diaries for an early swim that Friday morning.

It’s great to see people proudly wearing The Hat.  Even those who may not publicly be known for being vocal supporters are still spotted quietly showing their true colours.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

The Hat worn on the inside. Is this a “keep your friends close but your enemies closer” Godfather vibe, or is she just coming out as a Myrtlevillian? Looks good on you, Angela!

Viva The Hat 🙂

RNLI Myrtleville – Church Bay: July 4, 2015

Entries are coming in steadily for this fantastic swim.  Get yours in here.

This is the sixth running of the event and I thought a few blasts from the past would be appropriate.  With thanks to Howard Crowdy.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Pictured at the first Myrtleville to Church Bay RNLI Sea Swim 2010 were well known swimmers Imelda Lynch, Diarmuid Herlihy, Billy Campion, Finbarr Hedderman, Ossi Schmidt, Ned Denison and Lisa Cummins  (pic Howard Crowdy)

Seriously, look at de baba at the back.  Ah, Finbarr….were you about 15?

Ossi is smiling in that one but, at times, he has been know to be a bit….precise or maybe Germanic, shall we say.  Apparently on the day of this first swim it was scheduled to start at 2.30pm.  There was no way that Ossi was going to begin until the appointed time.  As for the rest of the entrants….they were a bit more on the Irish side.

Open water, sea swimming in Cork, Ireland.

Ossi Schmidt pictured appears to be giving the swimmers a head start during the Myrtleville to Church Bay RNLI Sea Swim 2010  (pic Howard Crowdy)

Don’t miss the sixth running of this great swim.  Enter here.