Wild swimming in cold water for many of you is a pleasurable experience, but it can also be extremely dangerous if not handled safely. The water is untreated, opaque and cold with deep silt and there are areas of reeds which create the risk of entanglement. Please take time to read this guidance before your swim.
- The water is 2.9m deep at its deepest point in the middle of the lake – you need to be a competent swimmer.
- It is not permitted to swim while intoxicated.
- Children over 8 are permitted to swim in the company of an adult over 18 with a 1:1 ratio.
- You should not swim if you have a reduced immune system, as your risk of developing serious health complications from contracting a water-borne illness is much higher.
- It is not permitted to jump or dive into the water.
- Warm up before your swim and bring warm clothes to put on afterwards.
- Don’t push your time in cold water if you are not used to it – limit the time you are in the lake for.
- Cold water will reduce your swimming speed so don’t be overambitious.
- Don’t jump or dive in but use the platform step – if you jump in you can suffer “cold water shock.”
- Cover up any cuts and wounds with a waterproof plaster.
- Swim within your limits and don’t swim if you are not fit and well.
- Team up with a swimming buddy and watch out for each other.
- It can take a while to get used to the look and feel of natural water. Keep breathing normally and focus on the sky above or the feel of the fresh water and you will soon relax into it.
- Avoid the areas of visible reeds and keep at least 2m from the lake edge.
- If you do encounter some reeds, slow your swim speed right down, don’t kick or thrash, and either float through them using your arms to paddle or turn around slowly. Keep your body as close to the surface as you can.
- If you need help, raise your arm in the air.
The level of micro-organisms within this untreated water will fluctuate. Water quality tests have been carried out and are posted on nearby signage. Swimming will not be permitted if the water quality should fail the tests, but the levels will vary so:
- Avoid swallowing the lake water.
- Avoid putting your whole head and particularly ears, mouth, nose and eyes under water.
- Wash your hands after your swim and before eating.
- Have a shower after your swim. The nearest hot shower is in the village back through the arena entrance towards the campsites.
- If you develop any symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea, dehydration, severe headaches, muscle pain, a rash around your stomach and / or fatigue within three weeks of your swim, visit your doctor and mention your lake swim.
- If you develop an ear infection, or an itchy, inflamed ear, discharge from the ear or temporary deafness, visit your doctor, mention your lake swim and the possibility of “swimmer’s ear.”