Some Links from "Waterlog"
I recently read Roger Deakin's fascinating book Waterlog, and was inspired to see if I could find any links to the places that he writes about in the book. No doubt he would have been unimpressed with this sort of "armchair tour" of places that he himself felt compelled not just to visit but experience physically.
A couple of the outdoor pools in the north of England interested me:
I also saw a picture of a rooftop outdoor swimming pool, appropriately in the city of Bath. As I think that it's part of a privately run spa I don't think that Roger Deakin would have included it in his book but still it seemed an interesting location for a swim:
In another section of the book he talks about swimming in the Gulf of Corryvreckan, which is off the coast of the Scottish island of Jura and is also the location of a dangerous whirlpool. I found it hard to imagine this place so it was interesting to see pictures on a site about seakayaking in the area, and there is a site with information about the whirlpool. (There is also a Wikipedia article, but that doesn't have any pictures.)
Another section that left an impression on me was his description of descending into "Hell Gill", another place that I'd never heard of before. In my mind I pictured something like a very narrow crevasse descending between two sheer rock faces, but I've no idea whether that's accurate or not. The best link that I've found so far is to Waterfalls in the Yorkshire Dales, one of which is Hell Gill. Neither this place nor the Gulf of Corryvreckan sound like terribly sensible places to go for a swim, and maybe that's why those parts of the book were particularly memorable.
There are also some interesting websites about outdoor swimming and places where you can do it:
- River and Lake Swimming Association
- Breaststrokes: the Outdoor Swimming Society
- Lidos and Outdoor swimming pools in the UK
- Lidos in the United Kingdom