The Applegate Lake Open Water Weekend has been running for over 30 years, and is the oldest and longest running open water event in Oregon. This year the Applegate Lake 10K swim on Saturday, July 14th, served as the 2018 USMS Long-Distance Open Water National Championships. This was the final segment of the three-part Oregon Swimcation National Championship series, following the Portland Bridge Swim (ultra-marathon) on the previous Sunday and the 2-Mile Cable Swim at Foster Lake on Thursday. Applegate Lake Saturday events also featured 2.5K and 5K options for those not wanting to swim a marathon.
Though the weather was a little hot, with temperatures at the lake hitting 105F on Saturday, the water was near perfect at 75F and the event was a big success. This year was the largest turnout in the history of the event, with more than 152 people pre-registered for the two-day event and an additional five people signing up on race day. The field of swimmers in the 10K was impressively fast and very competitive, with six swimmers completing the 10K under 2:18 and with less than a minute separating 1st through 6th place! Wow!
After completing their swim, participants enjoyed live music while eating delicious Hawaiian style plate lunches from Auntie Carol’s Hawaiian Café, and sipping on the beverage of their choice from the “beer ambulance” provided by Growler King of Medford. Despite the extreme heat, everyone agreed that it was a very fun time!
Sunday usually features the 1500-meter swim followed by the popular 3 x 500-meter pursuit relay. Unfortunately, just before the 1500, mother nature presented us with some interesting weather including strong winds, heavy rains, hail, and lightning, which delayed the start of the 1500 by an hour and forced cancellation of the pursuit relays. Despite the unusual weather delay, people said they enjoyed the uniqueness of the weather of the day. The food and drink tasted just as good in the rain as in the 100°+ heat!