The Still Water 8

Sounds like a movie, doesn’t it?!  But no, it is a series of marathon swims, along the lines of Ocean’s Seven or Triple Crown.  I’d never heard of it until getting the latest issue of USMS Swimmer in the mail on Friday.

The Still Water 8 consists of eight lake marathons around the world. The idea apparently is the bright idea of Michelle Macy. As of yet, no one swimmer has completed it.  There are three ways of swimming the 8: with wetsuit, without (FINA-rules suits) and EC rules. If you swim even one of the 8 in a wetsuit or a FINA-approved (e.g. not a traditional EC costume) suit, then all your swims will be considered in that category. So if you think you’ll want to do some in trunks, cap and goggles a la EC-standard, then you better do them all.

The swims? Here they are, with whatever pretty picture I could find of each (list and info courtesy of Openwaterpedia):

1. Loch Ness (Scotland): 23 miles/37K, water temperature averages 50°F/10°C in season. Known for its deep black and chilling waters.


2. Windermere (England): 10.5 miles/16.9K, water temperature can be as low as 55°F/13°C in season. The largest natural lake in England.


3. Lake Zürich (Switzerland): 16.4 miles/26.4K, water temperature 66.2–75.2°F/19-24°C. This lake has an annual international competition.


4. Lake Tahoe (USA): 21 miles/35.4K, water temperature is 50–58°F/10–14.4°F. Difficult due to cool water and air temperatures and high altitude.


5. Lake Baikal (Russia): 7-10 miles/11-16K or blaze a course of equal or greater distance,water temperature can be as low as 50°F/10°C. The world’s oldest and deepest lake is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


6. Lake Taupo (New Zealand): 21 miles/34K, water temperature 51–73°F/11–23°C. The largest lake in New Zealand is located on the North Island.


7. Lake Ontario (Canada): 31.5 miles/51K, water temperatures are variable in a matter of hours due to wind (50–72°F/10-22°C. Difficult swim due to unpredictable wind and currents.

Lake ontario

8. Lake Titicaca (Bolivia–Peru): Temperature is 56-58°F/13-14.5°F and is highest lake in the Americas. Openwaterpedia doesn’t mention how far of a swim this would be, but looking at Google Maps, it looks like the distance would be in the mid-20s…miles that is.

Lake titicaca

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