Salty Air

October Sunset Swim at Chapoquoit Beach

Sunset Swim Chapoquoit
Written by Brian Tarcy

WEST FALMOUTH – Lauren Valle swims four times a week at Chapoquoit Beach. Yes, she can read a calendar.

“The latest date I swam last winter was January 7,” said Valle, 29, an herbalist of Falmouth. “I started up again in April.”

Sunset Swim Chapoquoit

Lauren Valle, after her swim. “It’s kind of a mystical thing.”

On late Tuesday as the sun was setting over the glassy calm of Buzzards Bay, Valle walked onto the beach and then straight into the water, where she stayed for about 10 minutes. It was long enough to swim out and then do a couple of 100 meter or so laps back and forth.

“It’s the best medicine I know. It just makes me feel alive.”  – Lauren Valle

As she emerged from the water, she said, “It’s the best medicine I know. It just makes me feel alive.”

Valle grew up in Dedham. Her family has always had a house in Falmouth too, and she always swims at Chapoquoit Beach. The weather does not matter, she said. She swims in storms, and into the winter.

Sunset Swim Chapoquoit

Lauren Valle swimming at sunset

“It is cold. There is a physiological effect. Something happens to the body. Your body starts to warm up from the core, internally, and then your blood flow changes. It’s kind of a mystical thing.”

As the weather turns to winter, she said, she will do yoga breathing exercises before she enters the water. But in early October, she walked right in. She likes the medicine, and she has no plans to stop any time soon.

“The colder the water, the stronger the medicine,” she said.


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About the author

Brian Tarcy

Brian Tarcy is co-founder of Cape Cod Wave. He is a longtime journalist who has written for the Boston Globe, Boston magazine, the Cape Cod Times and several other publications. He is the author of "YOU CAN'T SELL RIGHT FIELD; A Cape Cod Novel." He is also the author or co-author of more than a dozen mostly non-fiction books, including books with celebrity athletes Cam Neely, Tom Glavine and Joe Theisman. His previous book was, "ALMOST: 12 Electric Months Chasing A Silicon Valley Dream" with Hap Klopp,who created the iconic brand, The North Face.
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Brian is a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan with a long-running NFL predictions/political satire column connecting weekly world events to the fate of his favorite team, now at

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