Rough water exits

The sea is getting rough next week and we’re heading into Winter, when rough water and waves will be much more common.  Swimming in the waves is great crack, no question. 

Getting in and getting out of the waves is not quite so much fun and potentially dangerous. 

Donal Buckley is doing a very detailed series on this and I’m going to point everyone there.  However, I’m going to copy a couple of his lines below – just as a summary. 

We’re very lucky in Myrtleville to have a sandy, safe exit 99% of the time.  There are rocks, though, and even on sand a wave can hit and flip you very easily.  That’s painful – and dangerous.  Think before you get in and think very hard about how you’ll get out.  It’s too late to do that when you’re in the waves.


  • You should not be getting into open water before you know where or if you can safely exit.
  • You should not let others decide for you if exit conditions are safe.
  • Alternatively you should not get into the water simply because someone else is already in there.
  • A corollary of these statements is that you should not be getting in the water in anticipation that a safe exit will somehow present itself once you have entered the water.

Swim safe – which can mean “don’t swim today”.  If it looks a bit dodgy to get in, it’ll be a lot worse to get out 🙂


Turkey Swims 2017

Mark your diaries for the Turkey Swim Dates 2017! Times, Locations & Dates below…

Remember this is open to everyone who swims regularly in the Sea, no matter where they normally swim.  This is not exclusive to any club or group of swimmers, If you want to swim on a date, come along, find a swim buddy and join in, no matter where the swim is on! The Sandycove times are based on tides and at Myrtleville we can swim on any tide so there is a mix of Morning/afternoon times to try and suit all people over both days of the weekend.  Wetsuit, Skins, Fins, all welcome!
How the ‘Turkey Swims’ work:
** Swimmers Sign In and pay €2 on the day of Swim. (someone will have a money box and sign-in sheet – probably Carol, Angela or Eoin).
** Money Collected goes towards Prizes drawn on 23rd Dec at Fountainstown, These include Butcher Vouchers (instead of an actual Turkey) and many other spot prizes (The Edge Vouchers / wine / chocolates / selection boxes etc!). We had over 30 prizes last year.
** Don’t Forget to Pay and Sign In, if you don’t you are not in the draw!
** Make however many swims you can.
** The more you swim, the more times you are entered for the ‘draw’.
** A Swim doesn’t have to be 30mins, no min/max time or distance, turn up and do what you feel comfortable with on the day. Togs or Wetsuit, up to you, swim safe, stay warm, swim with similar speed buddies. Turning Up for Fresh Air and a chat also counts, sometimes that’s what we need.
** The Swimmers Turkey Series is a Social Event for Cork OW swimming in the Winter.
Remember to bring your Flasks for after the swims for hot drinks to help you warm up, Nibbles are always welcome too!, there is talk of some people bringing cake! ideal way to practice for the Great Turkey Bake Off on Sat 23rd Dec! (See the Facebook event for more info)

East Cork Open Water Swimmers


East Cork Open Water Swimmers

Are meeting 11th October 8pm Midleton Park Hotel.

Wear swimming shirts if you have them.

Meet in the main bar.

Agenda – trying to establish regular swim times in East Cork.

Please spread the word to anyone who might be interested.

Christmas presents – sorted.

Wondering what to get for the swimmer (and car-owner) in your life, this Christmas?  The year’s must-have fashion accessory, of course.  The Myrtleville Swimmers windscreen decal.  I didn’t even have to make this one up.  Fair dues to Owen McSweeney.

You’d expect to find Kieran Murphy around anything like this – and sure enough…

Can’t wait to see Finbarr Hedderman’s car when he gets his one done.  Bernard has already ordered one for Ann Lynch.  Don’t tell her though, it’s a surprise.

Mabon Eve Swim – Thursday, September 21st @ 06.30

Unfortunately, due to a forecast Gale Force 8 on next Friday morning, the Second Annual Myrtleville Mabon Swim to welcome the Autumn Equinox has been cancelled.

We herewith announce The First Annual Myrtleville Mabon Eve Swim, which will take place at 6.30am on Thursday, September 21st.  

21st of the month would be the equinox date for Spring, Summer and Winter so really the 22nd is a bit off – astronomically, I’d say, maybe.  I’ll ask Jim Shalloo.  He’s the man for that astronomical stuff.  You should have heard him this morning out by Bunny’s – “Do you know your apogees and perigees?”, says he.  Genius, boy, genius.

Anyway, back to the Swim.  Thursday morning next the forecast looks OK for a bit of sunrise.  6.30am.  Arrive quietly, in droves.

The Moon, Venus and Roches Point all shining on  Myrtleville this Monday morning. Hopefully it will be like this on Thursday.

Myrtlevillians mistreated in Sandycove

Honestly – some people?! We do all this work to support Sandycove and our peaceful emissaries are grievously mistreated by way of thanks.   The images from the events of Saturday are simply shocking.  Those of a gentle disposition may wish to look away now (Denis, Eoin Lowry etc).

First up – staunch Myrtlevillian, Finbarr Hedderman was lured into a picture with horrendous grey branded products and some kind of goat flag.  Ever the gentleman, he faked a smile but refused to wear any of them.  Myrtleville to the core, is Finbarr.  

Further insult was heaped on the unsuspecting award-winning Siobhan Russell, when she was unceremoniously bundled up in some of the gear.  We think this is an attempt to get star recognition of the goaty stuff, what with Siobhan’s high profile and access to all the top media outlets – this site, the Carrigdhoun etc.

The swim itself was where the real badness occurred – with outright assault on poor Bernard Lynch by person or persons unknown out the back of the Island.  Eoin O’Riordan, by the way.  Beaten and battered was Bernie – until he pulled away and bate the perpetrator.  Gwan ya good ting, Bernie!!  

The assault was raised with Rob De Bull after the event, in the hope that Eoin might get his just punishment.  “I saw nuttin”, said Rob.

We’re sure there were other assaults, but Myrtlevillians swam on regardless.  It’s worth noting that every single Myrtlevillian in the event beat Ned Denison.  How about that? Doesn’t happen too often.  

Darren Morrissey also showed the begrudgers what he thought of them. Gwan, Dazza!!

Things just got worse at the after-party.  Senior statisticians pored over the purported results and noted numerous additions of time onto Myrtlevillians.   Fake Times, said some American guy.  

Leading Myrtlevillians, Aisling and Finbarr, took to the stage to appeal for calm and a modicum of gratitude for all that Myrtevillians have done for little Sandycove.  That went down well.Eoin O’Riordan responded with shouts of “thanks, I’ll give ye thanks!!!” and went for Bernard again.  How much punishment must the poor man take?Salt was then rubbed in the wounds when our Mike Harris award was presented to Alex Jeffers.  I’m sure Alex has done his bit for Sandycove – but nowhere near as much as myself and Bernard.  Fix, like.  Fix.  They made our Finbarr stand in that pic too.  

Still, there’s always positives amidst the gloom.  The Irwin family had another great day out!  Well done, Mae – and the first man home in togs, Neddie, of course 🙂

Weever attack – steps to take.

If you happen to have the incredible misfortune to step on a Weever fish, it’s important to know the steps to take.  I’m helpfully listing them here.  Not all of them are strictly necessary or helpful, but you can weed those out.

First of all, to avoid needing to know these steps, shuffle into the water – especially at low tide.  Otherwise, you might meet this guy.  Mostly they stay away from us and down in Sandycove – so there is hardly anyone in danger – but sometimes Ned drops a bucket of them in Myrtleville,  so we have hundreds of swimmers to warn.

Have you seen this fish? Vicious Weever transported from Sandycove and dumped at our beach.

One useful thing to know is that after you’ve been spiked, if you stay in the water your foot will be so cold you won’t really feel the pain.  You’ll know there’s something wrong, but it’s a deferral method.  Try deferring for as long as you can.  Do a ten hour swim.  I only did an hour and was sorry I got out.

Once the pain starts to hit as your foot warms up, here’s what you do:

  1. Ring an expert on Weaver Fish.  That’s Bernard.  He’ll tell ya.
  2. Curse him when he doesn’t answer.
  3. Look up “weaver fish” on google.  
  4. Just accept it when google tells you it’s showing you results for “weever fish”, not “weaver fish”.  It’s not the time to get into a spelling argument about how Bernard told you to spell it.  Curse.
  5. Realise your foot is getting sorer fast, that the pain is moving up your leg and you’re a long way from a basin of hot water.  That’s what google told you to get.
  6. Drive home.  Further cursing optional.
  7. Limp into house.  Cursing optional, but likely.
  8. Do whatever is needed to get foot into basin of water at 40c+
  9. Put foot in water.  Curse because it’s too hot.
  10. Replace foot in water.  Pain is worse than the heat.
  11. Eventually receive call from weaver fish expert.  Explain to Bernard you’re only interested in weever fish.
  12. Listen to Bernard’s stories about how much worse his weaver/weever fish attacks were.  At least get some good advice about checking for spines left in the foot.
  13. Try to twist foot around to see if there are spines stuck in it.
  14. Ask spouse to check if there are spines.
  15. Graciously refuse spouse’s offer to get any spines out with a bread knife.  “I’ll get in good and deep just to make sure”.  No thanks.  You’re grand.
  16. Sit with foot in basin and wait for pain to subside.
  17. Wait.  A few fecks as the pain ebbs and flows.
  18. Wait.  More hot water.
  19. Check google again to see how long they said this would last.  Two hours for peak pain?  It’s four hours since I was attacked.  Feck.
  20. Wait.  Curse a bit more.  Add hot water.
  21. Attempt to put on shoe.  Realise foot too swollen.  Curse.
  22. Wait.  It does fade to numbness.  Took seven hours, though.

So, from Irish Water Safety: When entering the water, make plenty of noise with your feet and kick up the sand a little, this alerts the weever fish to your presence and they normally swim out in to deeper water away from you.

Otherwise, you’ll end up like this.  And Bernard’s no feckin’ help.  Believe me.

Do the Weever Shuffle. You don’t want to be this guy.