“Is this where the group meets for swimming?”
I was standing half-naked in a car park next to Balgray Reservoir when a man approached and asked me this. I don’t normally frequent car parks in the buff but I was getting changed to go swimming and there was no facilities nearby.
I was not part of a group and did not know what he was asking about so I replied “Sorry I’m not part of a group”
He looked confused by my answer. I realised he was probably confused as to why I would be half naked, trying to get one leg in a wet suit, if I wasn’t part of swimming group.
So to put his confused mind at rest I added. “I‘m swimming too but just not with a group.”
He didn’t go away. He waited a minute and then said, “is it a 800m loop?”
“Is what a 800m loop?” I asked.
“The swim?” He replied.
“I don’t know. I’m not with the group!” I was starting to get annoyed.
He waited a minute and then said “Are you in charge of the group?”
“NO!!! I’m not in the group! I’m just trying to go for a swim!”
He looked like he finally realized I was not able to help him but it did not stop him from asking one final question.
“How much is it to join?”
Ease of Access: There’s a car park next to the reservoir. No toilet or changing facilities. I had to walk through mud to enter the water.
Water quality: A bit murky and grim but reasonably warm. it was 14.5C when I went (June)
Swim Quality: It was quite easy to do a reasonable loop by aiming for some of the local features e.g. a tall power tower, a big house on the hill etc. The water was calm.
Would I go back: Probably not. There’s nicer places to swim.