Pacific Dip: Make the Polar Splash, in Long Beach

It's a bracing experience. Very, very bracing.

When one is about to head out to a fun or lighthearted excursion, there are certain websites and apps and information sources that are consulted. 

You might look at weather first; will it rain on your picnic? And traffic is commonly checked, to make sure your go-to route isn't gridlocked.

But what of scrolling through number-laden tables at the National Oceanographic Data Center? It's not a common last-stop before heading out the door, unless you're headed for a happening that's all about running into the Pacific Ocean on a January day. Meaning the pondering of average oceanic temperatures -- or just how many goosebumps you'll get -- begins before you leave the house.

The Long Beach Polar Splash!, however, should only induce a whole bunch of goosebumps vs. a carpet of goosebumps (as was the case at the Huntington Beach Surf Splash on a very chilly New Year's Day). The expected high on Saturday, Jan. 17 is that quintessential SoCal temperature of 72 degrees, though the Pacific will be notably cooler.

And you'll be running, in your skivvies (skivvies=bikini or trunks but not a wetsuit) into the waves at 11 a.m., not 3 p.m, if you're counting on the afternoon sun to provide some afternoon-style toastiness. 

Not. Happening.

But you'll do this, of course, because it is a challenge and because you'll get some great pictures and because you want to stay and participate in a beach clean-up beforehand. (Just 30 minutes -- you can do it.) 

Where to meet? Granada Avenue. Should your pal accompany you and snap photos? How will you tell the world if he doesn't? Is this the final polar plunge of the season, at least 'round the Golden State?

Nope: South Lake Tahoe has one coming up in March. Lake Tahoe in March is likely very, very goosebump-inducing, if you find that your Long Beach plunge only gave you a few temporary and honorary bumps.

Because goosebumps in a polar plunge are like shiny ribbons or trophies in other activities, right?

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