609 in 2015 and later

648 past in 2015 (updated 17-07-'15)

Swimming in winter is not for the faint-hearted—but don't let that put you off

At the close of the year, it is nice to look back on its greatest hits. This year I find it comes to me in waterborne flashes. Here’s one: a sweltering day in the sea-green swell off the Jurassic Coast. A natural arch of limestone looming overhead, a pebble floor falling vertiginously away below as I strike out from shore. Water clear as glass, as air: a sensation of taking flight. And another: shin-deep in a saline sea, somewhere in the Sonoran Desert. Skin tingling; sun sinking behind the mountains; a hazy, amethyst sky.

But swimming is by no means only a summer activity. To dry off at the season’s end is to miss so much that is magical. For my fairweather friends, I find it best to introduce the idea by degrees.

Read the article @prospectmagazine