Guest Series: Ned’s SCAR Swim Challenge – Part 2

Ned‘s report from yesterday morning:

Tuesday, 30 April 2013 – 6:00 am (local time)

The plane trip out has left me with big fat swollen ankles – not a pretty sight.  Let’s hope they return to normal because they are so big that they’ll be a drag.  On the bright side, maybe they will help float my legs?  The toughtest past of long freshwater swims for a 6 foot 6 incher is that my feet sink and the shoulders pull that extra drag, forever, for four days.

My skin is stil in bad shape after the Guildford event: chlorine/windchill combination. This will not help as the temperature here was 105ºF and there is a blazing sun. Ah, how much sun could you get swimming 37 miles?

I met Kent, the organiser, who did confirm that Day 3 is the 17 mile swim. And there I was for the last few months smiling every time I saw Alan Rodgers train at Source, thinking: “he has no idea how hard the 16 miles in Lake Zurich will be”…

On Monday, our gang chatted, ate, shopped and relaxed. Gracie and her husband arrived at 3:00 am last night from San Diego to complete the house! She set the all-time (male/female) speed record in Catalina at the end of last year and no training does things like 17 mile pool swims in 6 hours. She will be my competition for the fastest here and my plan is simple: start 3 hours ahead of her, which might give me a chance.

The 50-strong group of swimmers and kayakers and volunteers meet at the sports bar tonight to do the briefing at at 5:15 am local lime we start the walk down to the first lake. Scary stuff!

Somebody please remind me why I find the need to keep challenging myself? Please! You don’t have much time – anyone?

There’ll be another update later today on how the first swim (in Saguaro Lake) went and Ned might even send us a picture or two…

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Guest Series: Ned’s SCAR Swim Challenge – Part 1

Over the next few days, I will be carrying reports from Ned Denison who is currently taking part in the SCAR Swim Challenge in Arizona. Here is the first installment:

It’s Sunday 29 April. I arrived in Phoenix Arizona at about 7:00 pm. I was met by Barbara Held (Triple Crown swimmer) and her Fire Captain friend and kayaker, Lee, in the biggest pickup truck I’ve ever seen.

My flights from London took about 16 hours. At the best of times, this would make me a bit sore but it was only 27 hours after completing the 1 mile every hour for 24 hours  in Guildford. Very sore, very old … and faced the daunting prospect of meeting Roger Finch (South African Triple Crown swimmer) and his lovely wife, Leslie, and he will want t0 have some beers…

I coped with one beer but must have missed some detailed of this 4 marathon swims in 4 days event: SCAR. I was sure it was three 10 mile swims plus 10 km night swim. It seems it is two 10 mile swims, a 17 mile swim then the 10 km night swim.

So, while I had no plan to enter Zurich this year, I seem to have drifted into a swim of the same distance. Just checking on Amazon for spare body parts…

There will be another update from Ned tomorrow. Hopefully, he will send on a few photographs too! Here’s a video from last year’s challenge to give you a feel for it:

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