As predicted Big Shoulders at Ohio Street was wavy. But it was not as bad as last Saturday. Early predictions of rain were wrong and we had a cloudless sky with about 75 degree water and air in the upper 60's, I didn't get an accurate reading to the tenth of a degree on this swim. The wind was from the NNW, that is coming from shore so the waves were not so high but surprisingly for this mostly enclosed area the were more swells than chop.
The biggest effect of the waves was to block visibility of the buoys and other nearby swimmers making navigation and strategy more difficult. I had feared that the second leg swimming into the wind would be hard, but it wasn't so bad except at the buoy at the end. Both laps I tried aiming upwind of the buoy so the wind would take me around it but failed and had to go backwards to get to the buoy. As I swam the chop picked up and it was worse the second time I was more intent on racing rather than swimming so I did not pay much attention. My splits were about the same both laps.
The biggest problem were the 2.5K swimmers on the first lap. I got bumped numerous times, got punched in the goggles and kicked in the mouth. Going around the buoys was especially bad. But in the middle of the second lap what I could see of the Lake was filled with swimmers and it was a beautiful site.
Overall the swim was more fun than work with great vistas of the Chicago lakeshore. I intend to be back again next year.