Swim Camps in Kona, Hawaii

Open Water Camps in Winter of 2019!

I've been all over the world looking for beautiful and safe open water swimming.

Guess where I found it? Right where I live…on the Big Island of Hawaii.  

I will be your HOST and COACH on this seven-day adventure that includes a combination of AMAZING open water swims, interspersed with group and private instruction, and even a day-trip to go explore the Big Island. The camp size will be small (10 or less) and most days are done before midday allowing you time to bike and run, or to go explore the wonders of this BIG island.

All camps include:

  • One hour of private instruction with video analysis in Karlyn's Endless Pool

  • Faster Freestyle Workshop

  • Open Water Skills and Drills Workshop

  • 8-9 open water swims (variety of length)

  • Outrigger canoe paddle adventure

  • Day-trips north and south of Kona to explore the Big Island

  • Meet and greet/farewell party

  • Three lunches, one dinner and snacks/fruits at each swim

  • Silicone swim cap

  • Autographed copy of Karlyn's memoir The Do-Over.

Proposed camp schedule (subject to Change:

Saturday evening at sunset (before camp officially begins) 5:30 pm: Meet and greet at the host hotel Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha Kona Beach Hotel with pupu's, pineapple, Mai Tais and non-alcoholic beverages.

Sunday, 8:00-12 Noon: The day begins in Kailua Bay with a 2-hour Faster Freestyle workshop designed to help you improve your technique. After a short break for refreshments, we will take your new stroke out for a "test drive" on the official Ironman World Championships swim course. Swim distance: 1.2 - 2.4 miles. 

Monday, 7:00-11:00 am: If you have ever wanted to try Hawaiian OUTRIGGER canoe paddling, now is your chance! We will paddle twice the distance of the IM course and hope to see dolphins or whales. No experience or equipment needed. After a light refreshment break, we will swim north from Kailua Pier toward the Old Airport State Park. Swim distance ~2.2 miles

Tuesday. Today is the day you will get your one-hour private session with video analysis in Karlyn's Endless pool! Schedule your session with Karlyn directly when you book your camp. No other group activities planned.

Wednesday, 8:30-4:00 pm. You will be picked up at the host hotel (Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach hotel) at 8:30 am and we will drive one-hour NORTH to world-renowned Hapuna Beach. It's a wide, sandy beach making it perfect for an Open Water Skills and Drills workshop from 9:30-10:30. After light refreshments, we will swim the Ironman HONU 70.3 swim course. After lunch (provided) we will head back south for our second swim of the day in the gorgeous, turquoise waters of Kua Bay. Swim distance between 2-3 miles.

Thursday, 8:30 am-7:00 pm: EXPLORE THE BIG ISLAND of HAWAII DAY! You will be picked up at the host hotel 8:30 am and we will drive NORTH to swim a second time in the crystal-clear waters of Kua Bay. After our swim, we will drive about an hour north passing the two small towns of Hawi (the turnaround for the bike portion of Ironman) and Kapaau. We will stop at the end of the road and go for about a one mile hike down to a black sand beach at Pololu Valley. After our hike, we will return to Hawi to shop and sightsee, then head south for our second swim of the day at Mahukona. 

Friday, 8:30-1:00 pm. Todays adventure will take us SOUTH to Kealakekua Bay (also known as Capt. Cook) where we will swim across the bay to the monument, then back. A light brunch will be provided before we head a few miles south to a local favorite snorkel location called "Two-Step" for a second (optional) swim. Swim distance 2-3 miles

Friday evening 5:30-8:30 pm. Farewell dinner at Karlyn's home with awards and fun!

Saturday 9:00-10:00 am: Our last swim is a beauty! You will take the local trolly a few miles south to Kahalu'u Beach park, also known as "turtle beach." This is an amazing swim in aquarium like water with an equally amazing reef. To be honest, it's one of my FAVORITE places to swim and a perfect way to end the camp. Swim distance 1.5 - 2.5 miles.


$1495 does not include accommodation or airfare. Book early and use air miles or SPG or Marriott points

2019 Dates:

Sunday, Jan. 20th to Saturday, Jan. 26th (Martin Luther King Day Jan. 21st) CAMP IS FULL!

Sunday, Feb. 17th to Saturday, Feb. 23rd (Presidents Day Feb. 18th)

Sunday, March 3rd to Saturday, March 9th

PRIVATE CAMPS are available year-round! Please inquire.

2020 Dates:

Sunday, January 19th to Saturday, Jan 25th (Martin Luther King Day Jan. 20th)

Sunday, February 16th to Saturday, Feb. 17th (Presidents Day Feb. 17th)

To sign up or for more information, please email Karlynpipes@gmail.com

Mini-Camps offered year-round...you create the schedule!

Together we will create a custom "mini-camp" with a flexible schedule that offers a combination of private or semi-private instruction in a variety of locations. Perfect a solo traveler, a couple or a small group. Book your camp today!

Sample schedule:

Session one in the Endless Pool: The camp begins with a 30-minute discussion about swim technique, followed by a private 60-minute lesson with plenty of videotaping and analysis. You will experience immediate results and the videos to prove it! For more details, please view swimming lessons page.

Session two in Kailua Bay: Held on the Ironman World Championships swim course, we will begin with a safety talk then head out into the crystal clear waters to work open water skills and drills and improving your technique. Distance covered will depend on comfort level and ability. 

Session three:  We can return to my Endless Pool to continue to work on the “new” stroke adding breaststroke and butterfly.  Or, if the open-water is calling you, let's go swim with the fish again! Flexibility is key, so we let's wait until after the second session to decide what location will work best for you to help you reach your swimming goals.


Two session mini-camp $425, three session mini-camp $545
Two to five people: Two session mini-camp $395, three session mini-camp $495

If you are considering a trip to Hawaii and would like to work with me, please view my travel schedule first, then book your camp today! 

Need a Swim Coach for YOUR Camp?

Do you need an enthusiastic and knowledgable on-deck swim coach for your next TRIATHLON or SWIM TEAM training trip to the Big Island of Hawaii? Then consider me! I will deliver innovative and challenging workouts specifically created for your group that can be held in either the pool or ocean. All abilities and ages are welcome.

Ideal for:

  • Triathletes

  • Masters swimmers

  • Youth swimmers

  • A group of like-minded friends

I will work with you to create a schedule and then custom-build workouts designed specifically for your group. You will have plenty of options between my Endless Pool, the ocean and the community pool. Best of all, participants will receive swim technique and stroke instruction throughout the camp. Perfect for groups large or small.

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