Posted by Scott Zornig, 1 February 2012
We are accepting applications for the 2012 season
It is that time of year when Marathon Swimmers are finalizing their plans for the upcoming season. We would be honored and thrilled if the SBCSA and one of the 7 islands we represent, was on your short list. We have many amazing swims and plenty of virgin routes for all of you “trailblazers” that want “to boldly go where no man (or woman) has gone before”. There also are several records which are calling out to be broken.
Since we love to dangle the carrot, please allow us to throw out the following:
- Did you know that there have been 25 solo swims between Anacapa Island and mainland, but no swimmer has broken the 5 hour mark…yet? The fastest time is a 5:03 to date.
- Did you know that the distance between Santa Cruz Island and mainland is 19.0 miles (compared to Catalina which is 20.4), but no swimmer has broken the 10 hour mark. The current fastest time is 10:26.
- Did you know that no female has ever made a successful solo swim off of Santa Rosa Island to mainland (27.5 miles)?
- Did you know that no male has ever made a successful solo swim off of San Miguel Island to mainland (25.9 miles)?
- Did you know that Penny Palfrey is the only person to have successfully made a swim off of Santa Barbara Island (37.7 miles)?
- Did you know there has never been a successful solo swim off of San Clemente Island (54.2 miles) and there has been only one successful relay?
- Did you know there has never been a successful swim off of San Nicolas Island (61.2 to 69.3 miles depending on course)? This swim may just go down as the single greatest marathon swim in history when someone is successful.
- Did you know that Catalina is the only channel island which a human has swum around? The remaining 7 islands are still virgins?
- Did you know there have only been 3 successful inter-island swims between any Southern California channel islands?
- Did you know our youngest successful swimmer was only 10 years of age (Kaustubh Vermuri) and our oldest (Emilio Casanueva) was 68 years old when they swam from Anacapa Island in 2007 and 2008 respectively?
- Did you know that only 2 people have completed island/mainland swims from 3 different Southern California Channel islands?
- Did you know that just 17 people have completed swims from 2 of the 8 Southern California Channel Islands?
- Did you know there are early bird special discounts if you send in your application, membership form and doctor report before May 1st? Please go to www.santabarbarachannelswim.org for all forms and information.
- Did you know that life is short and you should not put off to next year, what you can do this year? There is an island out there and it has your name on it.
Disabled & physically-challenged swimmers
If you are a disabled or physically-challenged swimmer, the SBCSA invites and encourages you to look at one of our channel islands for a possible marathon swim. We have distances ranging from 6 to almost 70 miles and many options in between. The SBCSA would be honored to help you find that perfect challenge. Of course, all athletes (able-bodied and disabled) will need to have completed qualifying swims representative of their desired distance prior to acceptance.
The SBCSA has never had a disabled athlete complete a swim from any of our 7 islands. Should you have an interest in attempting a swim, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 949-589-9831.
SBCSA President, Scott Zornig, recently started a new group on LinkedIn called “Marathon Swimming.” This group is for marathon swimmers who wish to preserve the 135+ year tradition of marathon swimming. The group’s mission is to see that the rich history of marathon swimming is documented, the rules are followed and to promote safe swimming. It is a place where marathon swimmers, worldwide, can share their thoughts, feelings and beliefs. It is also a place where marathon organizations can inform the community about their wonderful swimming opportunities.
If you are currently a LinkedIn member (or would like to me), you can join this group at www.linkedin.com. It is free! We want to hear what you have to say.
Anacapa Island History
- Anacapa Island is the closest channel island to the mainland at 12.4 statute miles. It is second to Catalina Island in most popular Southern California islands for a marathon swim. There have been 25 successful solo swims to and from the island. Cindy Cleveland was the first person to complete the route in 1978 and Alan Morrision was the last on September 24th, 2011. Nick Caine holds the fastest time of 5 hours and 3 minutes set in 2008.
- Anacapa is the only Channel Island to have a non-Spanish name. Anacapa comes from the Chumash Indian word eneepah which means mirage island. During the night of December 2, 1853 the steamer Winfield Scott crashed into the rocks off Middle Anacapa and sank. All of the passengers survived, but it took one week to rescue everyone.
- The United States Coast Guard built a light beacon in 1912. It was the last lighthouse built by the United States Lighthouse Service. The lighthouse is located on the eastern part of the island directly above the site where most marathon swims begin or end.
- On January 31, 2000, Alaska Airlines Flight 261 crashed near the island. In 2011, Dave Van Mouwerik published the Roadmap for swimming between Anacapa Island and the California mainland. This is a comprehensive guide for marathon swimmers who are considering Anacapa.
The start/finish of Anacapa Island swims. Arch Rock is approximately 125 yards in front of the island, and the lighthouse in the background. Does anyone notice all the “Bird Snow?”