Open water swimming is a sport all it's own, requiring unique skill, determination, strength, and raw guts. There hasn't been an organized open water race, in the Great Salt Lake, since 1940. On June 11, 2011, 12 swimmers will race from Antelope Island to Black Rock Beach (8 miles)! The 8 mile swim is capped at only 12 athletes, but the 1 mile swim from Great Salt Lake Marina to Black Rock Beach is still open for registration. The 1 mile swim will have kayak support every 1/10th mile and each athlete swimming the 8 mile will have their own kayak for support.
A piece of Utah history will be revived this year when the gun goes off and swimmers dive into the lake, fighting waves, trying not to swallow the salt water, and stroking to the finish. The record for this course was set in 1937 by Orson Spencer who swam the course in 3 hours 40 minutes and 52 seconds. This record was broken last year by Gordon Gridley (organizer of this event) who swam it in 3:24:37! To read about this achievement check out his blog HERE.
To register for this event or to read more about the history of the Great Salt Lake Open Water Swim, check out www.greatsaltlakeopenwater.com. Registration is $45 for the 1 mile swim. All participants will receive a shirt and a medal, not to mention the honor of being the first participants, since 1940 to swim in the Great Salt Lake!