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Annals Of Adventure: Frigid Fun…

January 20, 2006

Some people are simply different from the rest of us. One of them is a Welshman named Lewis Gordon Pugh. His aim is to swim in all five of the world’s oceans. And, yep, that includes the Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, both of which Pugh has already knocked off. Pugh doesn’t lard up, or use any special techniques to survive in the freezing water. He just pulls on his speedo, and a cap, pulls down his goggles, and jumps in. Last week he pulled off a 12km swim across Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth (which knocks off the Indian Ocean), and you can read all about it on Explorer’s Web. But his most impressive swims so far have been his Arctic Ocean swim and his Antarctic swim. His Arctic swim was at 80 degrees North, making it the most northerly swim ever, ar at least the most northerly swim by a white man keeping track (you have to wonder whether any Eskimos, Inuits, drunk Russians or clumsy explorers might have been there first…). His Antarctic swim took place over a kilometer in zero degree water. It took him just over 18 minutes, which makes you wonder what the hypothermia experts would have to say. I’m just shaking my head, both in awe and bemusement…

“Uh-oh. I think there’s gonna be shrinkage…”
(Photo: Terje Eggum, Scanpix – for exclusive use of ExplorersWeb (uh-oh, “exlusive”? Guess I better add) and The Wetass Chronicles, courtesy of Lewis’ team)

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