Cliff Lakes Night swim

I decided to use this event as a training session for my Dart 10k, and after scaring everyone with the Top 5 Pike Attacks on you tube I think I scared myself! We arrived in plenty of time and was made very welcome by Cliff Lakes staff. It started to get dark so we registered and got changed into our wetsuits and made our way down to the jetty. There were fairy lights and candles in jars which made it look fab! We checked in and then all got into the water with 2 glow sticks sticking out the side of our heads! It was very dark by this time but there were plenty of safety spotters on the water. It became clear as I swam round the 400+m lap that this was no training session …. It was too dark and everyone else seemed to be chatting going round! Therefore, I did 4 laps front crawl and 1 breaststroke / front crawl. It was a superb atmosphere and not to be missed! After swimming we went to the BBQ and had a burger which was cheap and delicious, along with a free tea or coffee. This for me was not a training session but a fantastic social event and a great way to get to know more about your Tri friends! A great social event and extremely well organised!! – Jayne Perry


Prior to arriving at the event a lovely Tri club member tagged us all on Facebook in a video called – top 5 pike attacks! Great start LOL, well anyway I didn’t get attacked and I did 6 laps of the 400m loops, definitely a different experience swimming in the dark but a good experience (even if I swear I saw eyes in the water, I must really be selling this event) , it was a great social event too and great to go as a club and chill together afterwards with some well earnt food ( cheese burger and lemon drizzle cake for me nom nom!) and a chit chat and get to know everyone better. Look forward to the next Tri club outing! – Loraine Dumont


13950498_10154518279637652_245309112_oRumours of a giant, man-eating pike were not enough to keep the brave Triathlon Redditch swimmers from entering the murky depths of Cliff Lakes. The 400m+ lap was marked with well lit buoys and plenty of safety canoeists and paddle-boarders. My Slimfast chocolate shake powered me through the first couple of laps, but it was the thought of Jayne doing more than me that drove me to eight more. That and the reward of a well-stocked bbq. A fantastic evening in great company. I would definitely do it again. – Richard Gallois


I hadn’t done many open water swims prior to this, let alone a night swim, so I was nervous to say the least! The sky was clear and the temperature was perfect, jumping in the water was certainly different seeing just little bits of light bobbing around in the distance! A steady 3 laps for me and I was very happy feeling more confident than when I had entered, having lots of people around in boats and in the water made me feel very safe and actually more relaxed than I had been at upton-warren the week before! BBQ at the end? Bonus! Fantastically ran event, great to socialise afterwards too as sometimes isn’t the case! – Ben Brown


Great event , loved swimming in the dark ! Note to self ‘more sighting needed ‘ to prevent bring knocked out by a kayaker’s oar ! When swimming off course !! – Charlotte Hewer


We all turned up on our Hoodies, and were soon pounced upon by Jason of Cliff Lakes, who was kind enough to explain how it all worked, and did his best to dispel any lingering Pike stories. Once we’d all registered and been given numbers we went back to the clubhouse to change. We got quite close to the front of the queue to get in the water, and as we were ticked of to get in the water we were given a band (so they know who is in and out) and two glow sticks to stick between your goggles and your swim hat. The course was a triangle of around 400m where the a buoys had pink lights on top, to make them easier to see. I had made the fools error of bringing my normal mirrored open water goggles, which turned dusk into instant midnight. After finishing my first lap, I looked up (and lifted my goggles!) the queue on the pontoon was still really long with people who hadn’t yet got in! I carried on. When I’d done swimming,  I checked out of the water, realised that I’d left my flip flops at the end of the pontoon and went to get them, on the return I got shouted at by the check in lady, but once I’d proved I’d already told her, she let me go! Later the socialising and listening to people event stories by candle light, and a bit of food and a hot drink mad this an event not to miss. Jason came over at the end and  mentioned some relay events they want to put on on the 24th September. They sound ace. – Russell Morey


What an awesome way to kick off my first OW swim of the season as well as my first swim at Cliff lakes, I wasn’t disappointed.  The organisation was really good and extremely welcoming, Jason explained everything fairly soon after we arrived and put our minds at rest on tales of top 5 pike incidents!  I had wondered how navigation would be, considering it’s tricky enough to see buoys at Ragley, but this was resolved with lit up buoys and a pontoon covered in fairy lights.  So no problems there!  We were given glow sticks and with our new bright blue swim caps we could identify each other, that is until it got really dark….though I have to say seeing fallen glow sticks on the bottom of the lake was a little off putting – especially with those tales of top 5 pike incidents!!!!!  2 laps completed and a great event all round, chilling out with triathlon buddies after with free hot drinks and catching up on training plans 🙂  – Louise Morey