I just returned from a short, 35 minute, open water swim. I swam in a local lake that, although I do not know the exact temperature, I suspect is warmer than Lake Coeur d’Alene.
I used a neoprene cap and booties, and the thermal wetsuit shirt that swtrigal recommended.
It was a bit brisk for the first five minutes or so and along with the cold water, this was my first open water swim of the year in my wetsuit, so that also took a bit of getting used to.
I was fairly comfortable for the swim and got into the rhythm of things, although I think that the cold water did make me swim a bit slower. And while the swim is definitely doable, I would be a bit dishonest if I did not admit to some trepidation about the upcoming IM swim which could find me in the water for three times as long as today’s short excursion.
At least I know that on June 22 I won’t be alone out there.