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Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Truth About False Bay

False Bay is not for the faint-hearted. Going in, swimmers know that the dramatically beautiful bay offers white, sandy beaches, beautiful valleys, sweeping vistas and Great White Sharks.

The distance across False Bay has eluded most who have tried. Annemie Landmeters, an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer, was the first to cross in 1989 in 9 hours 56 minutes.

15 years later in 2004, South African Steven Klugman successfully swam across the currently recognized longest course - 33 km from the traditional starting point of Rooi Els on the western end of the False Bay to Miller's Point (Rumbly Bay) - in 14 hours 15 minutes. Two years later, Cape Town's Carina Bruwer became the third swimmer, finishing in 11 hours 58 minutes. In 2007, Barend Nortje of South Africa set the current record in 9 hours 33 minutes.

While the swimmer and crew can gaze upon a picturesque coastline, the difficulty of this swim is underneath the water's surface. In addition to strong currents and unpredictable winds and water temperatures (from 9°C to 19°C), the swimmer is swimming among one of the highest concentrations of Great White Sharks in the world where 122 shark attacks have occurred, resulting in 36 serious injuries and 27 deaths.

While Landmeters and others like Kevin Murphy, Peter Bales, Hugh Tucker and Theodore Yach swam without protection, swimmers have used Shark Shields since 2004.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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Open Water Swimming Magazine

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The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

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The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.

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