Thinking about swimming in Green Lake? Here’s what you need to know:
Where to swim at Green Lake
Swimming in Green Lake is regulated by the Seattle Municipal Code. SMC 16.28.010 dictates that swimmers must stay within designated swimming areas or within 50 feet from the shore, unless the swimmer is accompanied by a boat within 25 feet of the swimmer that has a personal floatation device for the swimmer on board.
When to swim at Green Lake
Both beaches are staffed by lifeguards daily, weather permitting, noon to 7 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
This summer, East Green Lake Beach will be open until Sunday, August 28, 2011 and West Green Lake Beach will stay open until Monday, Sept. 5, 2011.
Before heading out for a swim, you can check recent Green Lake temperatures, as well as bacteria and algal toxin levels, here.
The Seattle Police Department Harbor Patrol Unit responds to approximately 6,000 service calls each year, the majority of which occur during the summer months.
The Harbor Unit has developed the following list of water safety tips:
- Insist properly fitted PFD’s (Personal Floatation Devices) be worn by everyone riding in a boat or being towed on an inner tube, skis or other device.
- Never allow alcohol to be consumed when around the water.
- Never swim in unsupervised areas, and never swim alone.
- Do not dive or jump into unfamiliar or shallow water because of the risk of spinal cord or head injuries.
- Go to shore when changing places in small tippy boats or canoes.
- Limit boating to safe weather and water conditions.
- Teach your child to swim or enroll them in swim classes.
- Children should not jump into the pool on their own until they are able to climb out on their own.
- If a river carries a stick faster than you can walk on shore, it’s moving too fast.
- Don’t swim in or around lily pads because arms or legs may become entangled.
Note: An earlier version of this story indicated that SPD has ticketed Green Lake swimmers this summer. In fact, no tickets have been issued.