Venturing down a path from a small car park near a village called Rydal I came across a lake I was looking for imaginatively called Rydal Water. It had been recommended one a few websites for wild swimming.

It’s not something that I’ve done a lot of, however, since I was at the Lakes it seemed rude not to. The path actually lead to a river which was a great 300m float down to a reed bed which I burst through into the quiet lake.

There are no boats or other traffic allowed in to this lake so it’s completely safe as opposed to some of the other bodies of water in the Lake District. Also, as it’s small, it’s a lot warmer than a lot of the other bigger lakes so I probably didn’t need the booties and gloves I was wearing.

It was a great swim except for two things. First, I got chased by a swan and second, the swim back up the river to the car park was truly tiring. There had been a lot of rain fall recently and the flow was really quite furious. At one point I thought I was swimming really fast but after about four or five breaths to the left, I realised the tree I was looking at on the bank was the same tree I’d been looking at for the last 30 seconds. I wasn’t moving anywhere.

Eventually, I had to move to the bank and grab tree roots and rushes and boost myself a few feet at a time up the river. Finally I managed to get into the slower moving water and hauled myself out onto the muddy shore beside the walking path.

All in all very exhilarating although I’d like to do it in company next time.