40 Pools

Celebrating a Big Birthday with 40 Swims

#9: Hommocks Pool

on February 12, 2012

Hommocks Pool skylight over the middle of the poolLocation: Mamaroneck, New York

Fee: Free with guest pass, otherwise $10 in the company of a permit-holding member

Configuration: 16 lanes of 25 yards

Total to Date: $55.33

It was a good week for skylights. I traveled up to Mamaroneck today to go for a swim with Westchester John. The venue was Hommocks Pool, adjacent to Mamaroneck Middle School and used by many local schools and teams. As you can see, there’s a huge skylight over the part of the pool where we swam, and I’m told that in the summer it opens up to let the sun shine in directly. (Hmmm, I wonder if that’s the case at Met Pool, too.)

The Hommocks area, named by sailors who spotted small hills along the marshy shore here, now includes a 7.6-acre conservation area with woodland, meadow, and salt marsh. John grew up nearby and remembers visiting the site when it was a dump. Once it got turned into a pool, the dump’s legacy made itself known as the landfill settled under the weight of the water, causing problems like tiles popping out and concrete beams shifting. Some of those issues cut into his high school swim time, but now they are distant memories, and John watched the next generation enjoy the pool, including his son’s high school swim team.

It’s a neat facility, with 16 lanes that were being used for a variety of purposes today. Don’t let the lack of lanes lines fool you; we did our laps right here parallel to the diving boards, each of us following our own line on the bottom and joined for a while by John’s friend Ed. Instead of having a deep end, this pool has a deep middle. There are eight lanes in this section, abutting shallow ends of four lanes each. Scuba practice and family rec were some of the other activities under way. It’s a BYO facility, without accessories such as pull-buoys and kickboards available for use. The pace clock wasn’t even turned on, so we had to guess how fast we were going. As is common at multiuse pools, the water was rather warm.

John is training for his first solo Manhattan Island Marathon Swim under the mostly virtual tutelage of Lance (my Palladium swim partner), who had provided a challenging 5,000+ yard workout. I hadn’t anticipated how this project would enable me to glom onto other people’s workouts, and it’s a nice perk.

John demonstrates how he used to gain access to the poolBack before the glass skylight was built, the pool roof was wide open in the summer and proved quite enticing to certain local youth. As John demonstrated, they could hop up a wall by the parking lot and then climb onto the roof to access the opening. The town added metal fencing to deter this type of activity, visible at left.

After the swim, we headed to downtown Mamaroneck for excellent Sicilian pizza and gelato, joined by Richard, who had tales of other local pools I may get to visit.

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One response to “#9: Hommocks Pool

  1. John Hughes says:

    You could only pool hop once a night because the door alarms would go off upon exiting
    (or so I was told ;<)

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