This weekend The Cole Classic is on at Shelly Beach in Manly. Traditionally, the 2 km swim runs from the sheltered, still-water Shelly Beach around to the ocean beach, South Steyne.
For the past three years, inclement conditions have led organisers to move the course so it starts and finishes at Shelly. This is a nightmare as Shelly is a narrow arc of sand that isn't particularly well suited to a big ocean swim. At any one time there might be a couple of thousand punters squished onto the beach and spilling over onto the promenade that winds its way back to South Steyne.
It looks as though this weekend might have the same surf conditions as 2010, with huge swells predicted for Sydney's beaches on Sunday.