Bride & Groom MOM Subscribe

Find Local

Four Open-Water Swimming Spots in Washington

There aren’t many options, but the president of DC Tri Club says these are open-water swimming best bets for triathletes

Photograph courtesy of Nation’s Triathlon

Washington boasts two national triathlon competitions and one of the highest concentrations of triathletes, but there’s just one problem.

While running and biking trails around Washington are aplenty, other than pool facilities, triathletes struggle to find a decent, natural open water spot to train for the swim portion of triathlons.

“Open water options around here suck,” says Emily Long, a local triathlete who just completed her first Iron Man competition. Even the swim portion of the Nation’s Triathlon last Sunday was canceled due to hazardous conditions in the Potomac River.

But triathletes shouldn’t despair. Here are four spots for open water swimming recommended Stephen Carlson, president of the DC Tri Club. Note that some of these swimming spots are closed after Labor Day or restricted to swim clinics.

1. National Harbor

137 National Plaza, National Harbor
“This is probably the best choice for people in the DC metro area,” Carlson says. But the venue is limited to events run by WaveOne Swimming, which hosts Thursday night happy-hour swims in addition to clinics on weekends.

See Also:

A Triathlete’s Cycling Workout: Fit Check

Triathlons in Washington: Why Tri?

2. Sandy Point
1100 East College Parkway, Annapolis
“This has been a popular open water swimming location for several years,” Carlson says. There is a public beach that is a few hundred meters long, Carlson says, but watch for the jelly fish.

3. Gunston Manor

5925 Kentia Trail, Lorton
A number of swim clinics are held throughout the year at Pohick Bay at Gunston Manor in Lorton. “The only downside of swimming here that I know of is the weeds in the grass,” Carlson says.

4. Lake Anna
6800 Lawyers Road, Spotsvylvania
The DC Tri Club has held several swim clinics here and there are several races held at the lake every year. Carlson says the surrounding area also has roads for biking if you want to get in a second workout after the swim.

Subscribe to Washingtonian

Follow Washingtonian on Twitter

Follow Well+Being on Twitter

More >> Health | Top Doctors | Well+Being Blog

blog comments powered by Disqus

Most Popular on Washingtonian

Everything You Need to Know About Pho*

This Dramatic New Apartment Building Just Opened in "The Next Cool DC Neighborhood You Never Heard Of"

The First Thanksgiving Took Place in Virginia, not Massachusetts

15 Casual (But Still Really Cool) Gifts for Your New Boyfriend

10 Cozy Places to Drink By the Fire This Winter

The Great Washington Bucket List: 50 Things Every Local Needs to Do

Look Inside Washington's First Hawaiian Restaurant: Hula Girl

The Best Day to Travel for Thanksgiving Is Thanksgiving Day Itself: Google

The DC Flag Tattoo Is Over