Race Recap: 2014 Swim Across Suttle

$20 won’t buy you a whole lot anymore. But this past Sunday, August 23, Sisters MultiSport provided a swim cap, a goody bag, a great post-race spread, and a heck of an event at the Swim Across Suttle 1.3 mile swim in Central Oregon – all for $20!

This Fourth annual event really presented some of the most beautiful scenery around, as well as provided a great warm-up event to those multi-sport athletes – both veterans and those new to the sport. There were plenty of younger participants out there as well (kicking my butt) and even a seperate division for non-wetsuit wearers. It is a really amazing opportunity to get the feel of a mass start (including kicking legs and swimmer-made waves) on a smaller scale (almost 60 swimmers) before dipping into those bigger races later this fall.

Stepping into the water just before the start of the event, I was greeted by a sandy and slightly muddy bottom.  The water was refreshing but pleasant, not uncomfortable at all, and as the race director gave his speech before the start the sight of the kayaks in the distance along the course helped to calm my jitters.  When the countdown was over I put my head down and tried to get into my rhythm; with only 55 people in the water it was definitely not overcrowded and I only made contact with two other swimmers at the start.  Large yellow buoys marking the direct path and small orange buoys marking the shoreline and fallen trees that jutted out were more than adequate in keeping me on course along the way.

There isn’t much else to think about when swimming 1.3 miles in open water (my longest open-water distance so far) other than trying to swim straight and keep my stroke smooth and consistent.  The occasional, “Am I even close to being finished yet,” did cross my mind a few times too.  It seemed a lot longer than it really was but finally I spotted the finish flag in the distance and I could see the lake bottom rising to meet me.  I swam until my hand contacted the soft bottom and I stood up to jog to the gate feeling much better about my preparedness for the upcoming triathlon.

The post-race featured a bunch of Great Harvest treats – from bread to cookies and everything in between, and featured coolers of water and some coffee or hot chocolate for the taking.

This event comes highly recommended by Run Oregon. In fact, all Sisters Multi Sport events that Run Oregon has participated in have been solid. It makes for a great training swim, complete with great scenery, atmosphere, and top-notch support. You can’t ask for much better then that!


About Author

Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching hockey, going to as many breweries (618) and wineries (152) as he can, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.

%d bloggers like this: