DNOWS Header

Image Map

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Men And Women Of The Molokaʻi Channel

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Of the 37 people in history who have successfully crossed the 26-mile (42 km) Molokaʻi Channel (Ka'iwi Channel) between the islands of Oʻahu (The Gathering Place) and Molokaʻi (the Friendly Island) in Hawaii over the past 54 years, there are some interesting data:

The average age of the 22 men is 36.54 years. The average age of the 15 women is 36.53 years.

The average time of the 22 men is 15 hours 45 minutes while the average time of the 15 women is 16 hours 54 minutes.

Of the first 10 swimmers, only 1 was a women. Of the most recent 10 swimmers, 6 were women.

Of the first 20 swimmers, only 6 were women. Of the most recent 20 swimmers, 11 were women.

While the most of the swimmers (35) swim from Molokaʻi to Oʻahu (east to west), two swimmers (Harry Huffaker in 1972 and Forrest Nelson in 2006) have swum in the opposite direction.

While the shortest and most ideal finish point is Sandy Beach, O'ahu's eastward most facing beach, swimmers have landed on O'ahu everywhere from Makapu'u Beach to near Diamond Head (see map above).

Swimmers have been pulled for an abundance of sharks, jellyfish stings, strong currents and turbulent conditions.

There are two organizations that help swimmers organize and navigate their crossings: Bill Goding and Linda Kaiser with the Ka'iwi Channel Swimmers Association and Steve Haumschild and Jeff Kozlovich of the Kaiwi Channel Association.

"The aloha spirit of Bill, Linda, Jeff and Steve demonstrate the passion, care and sense of community of ocean swimmers. They really care about taking care of the swimmers from a perspective of safety, but they know that crossing the Molokai Channel will push the swimmers like few other places on Earth," explains Steven Munatones. "They balance very carefully how much to push each swimmer, but always placing safety as their number one issue. Because Hawaii is so far away from everyone, they are able to answer questions about how to get to Molokai, where to stay, taxi service, and escort boat captains. They truly make a stressful adventure as enjoyable and memorable as possible by eliminating as much logistical worries and navigational questions as can be expected."

Members of the Ka'iwi Channel Swimmers Association include:

1. 1961 - Keo Nakama (age 40), finished in Hanauma Bay, 15 hours 30 minutes
2. 1967 - Harry Huffaker (27), 13:35
3. 1972 - Harry Huffaker (32) from Oahu to Molokai, 16:15
4. 1974 - Jonathan Ezer (18), 13:04
5. 1979 - Michael Miller (25), 16:50
6. 1979 - Ian Emberson (28), 16:50
7. 1994 - Robin Isayama (26) first female, 15:21
8. 2006 - Forrest Nelson (40) from Oahu to Molokai, 16:36
9. 2006 - Forrest Nelson (41), 15:55
10. 2006 - Bill Goding (53), 15:55
11. 2007 - Mike Spalding (60), finished in Hanauma Bay, 15:15
12. 2007 - Kelly Gleason (32), finished in Hanauma Bay, 15:15
13. 2007 - Linda Kaiser (57), 15:00
14. 2009 - Mackenzie Miller (19), 14:52
15. 2010 - Chris Palfrey (52), 12:53
16. 2011 - Tina Neill (45), 17:17
17. 2011 - Forrest Nelson (46), 17:17
18. 2011 - Darren Miller (28), 12:12
19. 2011 - Michelle Macy (34), 14:12
20. 2011 - Anna-Carin Nordin (40), 18:22
21. 2011 - Samantha Simon (21), 13:41
22. 2011 - Penny Palfrey (49), 12:07
23. 2012 - Stephen Redmond (46), finished at China Walls in Maunalua Bay, 22:30
24. 2012 - Adam Walker (34), finished near Diamond Head volcano, 17:01
25. 2012 - Michael Ventre (35), finished at China Walls in Maunalua Bay, 22:30
26. 2012 - Kathleen Wilson (49), 20:49
27. 2012 - Oliver Wilkinson (37), 13:05
28. 2012 - Kim Chambers (35), finished at China Walls in Maunalua Bay, 19:27
29. 2012 - Beth French (35), 24:10
30. 2013 - Leahi Camacho (17), 14:43
31. 2013 - Katie Benoit (34), 18:00
32. 2014 - Yesenia Cabrera Fuegos (41), 16 hours 50 minutes
33. 2014 - Cameron Keith (15), 13 hours 55 minutes
34. 2014 - Victoria Rian (47), 14 hours 42 minutes
35. 2014 - Jim Barber (54), 14 hours 42 minutes
36. 2014 - Rohans More (29), 17 hours 28 minutes
37. 2015 - Attila Mányoki (32), finished at Makapu'u in 12 hours 2 minutes

Photo above shows 18-year-old Mackenzie Miller finishing on Sandy Beach on Oahu after crossing the Channel of Bones.

Copyright © 2015 by World Open Water Swimming Association

A Thank You Gift from WOWSA

WOWSA is celebrating the
1-Year Anniversary of the monthly Open Water Swimming Magazine
by giving you a free copy of the anniversary issue.

Open Water Swimming Magazine Anniversary Issue
File Size: 13MB


Download the file to your computer, and then right-click to extract the magazine which is inside the zip folder. The magazine is in PDF format.

CLICK HERE to download your free copy now.

Open Water Swimming Magazine

Open Water Swimming Magazine

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.

WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...

The Other Shore

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.

2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac

An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.

But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...

Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:

The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.


Open Water Swimming Event Sanctioning

World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation

Open Water Race Calendar

Coaches Education Program