29th Annual Cascade Lakes Swim Series & Festival at Elk Lake

COMA Events

Friday, July 28 - Sunday, July 30, 2023

USMS Sanction : 373-W003

COMA Events

Open Water Registration


Registration Schedule

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Swimmer Registration Tue, Mar 21, 2023
12:01 AM
Mon, Jul 24, 2023
11:59 PM

This competition is limited to the first 200 entrants.
Currently there are 159 entrants.

CANCELED as of 7/25/2023 due to Smoke


Featuring the Oregon LMSC 1500-meter Open Water Championships

Elk Lake, OR      July 28-30, 2023      5 Swims in 3 Days!

  Hosted by Central Oregon Masters Aquatics and Bend Park & Recreation District
  Sanctioned by Oregon LMSC for U.S. Masters Swimming, Inc.
Operating under Special Use Permit from the United States Forest Service 
Staggered entry fee:  
  • Entries completed by July 17 receive a bonus for timeliness.  
  • Entries completed July 18-24 pay an extra fee (no t-shirt or spectator meals options).  
  • Online entries close on July 24 at 11:59pm PDT.

LOCATION:  Elk Lake, a beautiful, clear mountain lake nestled in the sunny Oregon Cascades 33 miles from Bend.  Water temperature is expected to be 66-70° F. (19-21° C.) and will be posted on race days.

FESTIVAL:  Elk Lake is a great place to bring your family for a fine outdoors experience and extravaganza.  Think multi-day, multi-swim FESTIVAL!  Fitness, fellowship, fun!

SWIMS (in order):  The Cascade Lakes Swim Series features five open water swims over three days.  Adult participants may enter any or all of the five swims.  Friday’s swim is a 3000-meter swim on a triangular course.  Saturday’s swims are an individual 500-meter time trial on an out-and-back floating line course and a 1500-meter swim around a triangular course.  Sunday’s swims will include a 5000-meter swim consisting of three loops of a diamond & triangular course and a 1000-meter swim on an irregular course following the west shoreline.

SERIES:  Swimmers who complete all FIVE swims will win special Survivor awards.  

SWIM SCHEDULE (subject to change due to conditions):
Friday, July 28, 2023
4:30-5:30pm Check-In for 3000-meter swim
6:00pm Start of 3000-meter swim
Saturday, July 29, 2023
7:45-8:45am Check-In for 500 & 1500-meter swims
9:15am Start of 500-meter swim
10:15-11:00am Check-in for the 1500-meter
—also the Oregon LMSC Championships!
11:30am Start of 1500-meter swim
Sunday, July 30, 2023
7:15 am-8:15am Check-In for 5000 & 1000-meter swims
8:45 am Start of 5000-meter swim
10:00-11:00am Check-In for the 1000-meter swim
11:45 am Start of 1000-meter race
Pre-race instructions 15 minutes before each start time.  A picnic lunch or dinner will follow the finish of races each day.

SAFETY—OUR PRIMARY CONCERN:  Safety boats will monitor the entire course and medical personnel will be on-site.  Swimmers must wear a brightly colored swim cap, have their race number on their arms (or hands when wearing sleeved wetsuits), and follow all announced safety rules without exception.

REGISTRATION—ONLINE ONLY (and NO DAY-OF-RACE ENTRIES!):  https://www.clubassistant.com/club/meet_information.cfm?c=1756&smid=15632 
  • Entry fees are staggered.  Entries completed by July 17 will receive a bonus for timeliness.  Entries completed July 18-24 pay an extra $10 fee; the online entry system will close on July 24 at 11:59pm PDT.  Save some cash—submit your entry on time!
ELIGIBILITY:  Open ONLY to adults (18 years of age or older on the day of the event) who are current USMS members or foreign equivalents.  Eligibility will be verified through the online entry system.  For swimmers who are not USMS members, USMS “One-Event” (OEVT) membership—good for all swims—is available with entry for $20.

QUALIFYING TIME:  Swimmers who cannot swim 1650-yards or 1500-meters in 40 minutes MAY NOT ENTER these events.  Please, it’s for safety!

ENTRY LIMITS:  The entire event—including all swims—is limited to the first 200 registrants.  We will maintain a waiting list if early registrants drop out early enough to notify others.

ENTRY FEE:  The basic entry fee is $40, plus $5 for each swim.  Entry fee includes a swim cap and post-swim meals on your race days.

OMS SANCTION SURCHARGE:  In addition to the entry fee, there is a required $5 per swimmer surcharge to cover the cost of USMS-mandated sanction insurance.

CONSOLIDATED EVENT:  Each swim will be conducted seeded as a single swim without regard to swimmer gender, age, or swimwear category, and in the order of submitted entry times if applicable.  Places, awards, and published results for these events shall be separate for each gender, age group, and swimwear category.

RULES & SWIMWEAR:  Current USMS rules will govern this event.  
  • Age will be determined by the age of the swimmer on December 31, 2023, except for 18-year-olds, who must be 18 on the first day of the event.  
  • Under penalty of disqualification, swimmers may not make deliberate contact with craft, craft operators, and/or any physical features on or near the course during a swim.
  • Category II suits—including wetsuits—are welcomed in all swims, but tabulated in a separate category.  See Event Website (below) for swimwear classification details.
  • Swimmers in either swimwear category MAY wear a Safety Tow Buoy for identification and safety.  These are defined as inflatable, tethered to the waist, and towed no farther behind than the top of the ankle.  Swimmers wearing Safety Tow Buoys will be tabulated in Category II as USMS rules require.
‘JUST FOR FUN’ CATEGORY:  In the 1500-meter swim only, we have included a ‘Just for Fun’ category for swimmers who would like a more-relaxed, non-competitive participation swim experience.  Swimmers in this category may use otherwise-prohibited devices like snorkels, pull buoys, paddles, fins, etc.  They’ll identify themselves at the pre-swim meeting and swim with the rest of us, but for safety & fairness they’ll start at the back of the pack and avoid contact & drafting with those who are racing.  We won’t report places or score them in any swimwear category, but we will report times as a courtesy.  As we said—just for fun!  

  • There will spotters provided in the area close to shore for supervised warm-up & warm-down.  Choosing to swim elsewhere in the lake is at the swimmer’s own risk.  
  • Warm up before the pre-race meeting, as swimmers go directly from meeting to marshaling to racing!
  • The 500-meter swim will have individual starts and the 1000-meter swim will start in small heats; both swims will be seeded fastest-to-slowest based on 500-yard seed time.  Swimmers not submitting a seed time will swim last.  Swimmers may not change seeding times at the race, so enter accurate times; the Event Director reserves the right to modify seeding times for fairness (based on previous times during this weekend) for the 1000-meter swim.
  • The 1500-meter swim will be divided into women’s and men’s waves.  
  • The 3000 & 5000-meter swims will use a mass start unless the size of the entry dictates otherwise for safety.  
RESULTS:  Will be posted promptly after each swim and at www.comaswim.org and www.swimoregon.org after the event.

AWARDS:  Age groups are standard USMS age groups.
  Awards to individual swimmers by age group:
•   Ribbons to three places in each age group in both Category I & II suit divisions in all swims.
  Awards to individual swimmers regardless of age group:
•   Special Survivor award to everyone completing all five swims.

  • Swimmers will represent the Oregon LMSC local team listed on their USMS registration.
  • Only swimmers wearing Category I suits shall score.  Swimmers wearing other swimwear or wetsuits may swim, but they shall not score.
  • Team scoring shall be point value by age group: 8-6-4-3-2-1.
  • Cumulative team scoring will be compiled and banner awards given to the team champions in both Large & Small Team categories.
OREGON OPEN WATER SERIES:  All swims count towards the cumulative season series.  The 1500 & 5000 are featured swims, while the 500, 1000, & 3000-meter swims are qualifying swims.  The ‘Just for Fun’ category in the 1500-meter swim is a participation swim.

SOUVENIRS:  With their entry, swimmers may pre-order & purchase commemorative t-shirts for $18.  Design below.  Souvenirs will not be on sale at the event unless there are extras. T-Shirts orders cutoff July 17th.

Elk Lake T-Shirt Design

HOT DRINKS & SNACKS:  We’ll have hot coffee and hot water for other drinks to help keep you warm before & after swims.  We will also offer modest snacks for our volunteers, many of whom are on duty long before swimmers arrive.  Swimmers may snack too, but these snacks are limited and NOT intended to serve as your breakfast or lunch.  

MEALS:  Swimmers will receive a post-swim meal; order vegetarian or meat with entry.  Swimmers may pre-order specatator meals—vegetarian or meat—for $12 each in advance with entry (cutoff for spectator meals is July 17).  Meals include dinner on Friday evening, and lunch on Saturday and Sunday.

CAMPING:  We were unable to reserve a group campground this year.  There are nearby campgrounds that you can reserve through www.recreation.gov.  Reserve early!

DIRECTIONS (Google: Elk Lake or go to  http://www.comaswim.org/cl-directions.html):  From Century Drive in Bend, take the Cascade Lakes Scenic Highway approximately 34 miles to Elk Lake.  The start & finish for all swims is the Beach Day Use Area at the southernmost end of the lake, last Elk Lake exit if coming from Bend.

PARKING:  Parking is limited to two large pullouts off the Cascades Lakes Highway and the Six-Lakes Trailhead.  There will be no general parking at the race site until after event activities have concluded.  Your car MUST display a current NW Forest Pass to park anywhere other than the highway pullouts or trailhead.

DOGS:  NO DOGS at Elk Lake (a U.S. Forest Service Rule), but they may be in the campground on a leash.  Never leave your dog unattended in a car!

EVENT WEBSITE FOR COMPLETE INFO:  www.comaswim.org/cascade-lakes.html

John Malfatto • E-mail: johnmalfatto@gmail.com • Phone: 541-668-1653 &
Erik Kropp • E-mail: bendkropp@gmail.com • Phone: 541-848-0431
COMA EVENT MANAGER:  Bob Bruce • E-mail: coachbobbruce@gmail.com • Phone: 541-317-4851

Note: If paying by credit card, your credit card statement will reflect a charge from "WWW.COMASWIM.ORG."

Online Registration closed on 7/24/2023.
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