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    • Over the last few years I've raced triathlons all over California yet only one race stands out as the toughest yet most beautiful - June Lake Triathlon. The views are spectacular! Lake is at 7,500 ft with a refreshingly cold swim in crystal clear water. If you haven't swam at elevation, trust me... it is so much harder to get enough air in a single breath.

      Even this picture doesn't sum up the feeling of awe of this place and the pain of the race...

    • I can definitely relate to that. Even though I swam in the ocean before and have put some good yardage in the swimming pool, open water swims were scary. So much adrenaline, limbs splashing everywhere and swimmers fighting for a good line, it is common accidentally to bump into someone, get elbowed in the head or even get your goggles knocked off. All that doesn't help relieve the anxiety. My recommendation is start at the back and just focus on getting into your own rhythm. The goal here is to get over the fear.

    • That does look beautiful and hard.

      The most beautiful race I've done is Escape From Alcatraz in San Francisco. It's so exciting with all the swimmers on the boat and then overboard you go right by Alcatraz. Of course, I had to take a selfie.

    • Wow, Chris... Your swim looks epic by any standard! Even though the California International Triathlon wasn't exactly the toughest race, the lake swim was definitely beautiful. My girlfriend got a picture of me right before the start. We watched the sunrise slowly lighting up the sky.