SANTA BARBARA, Calif., USA, June 18. SOME 70 swimmers, many of them relatively novice ocean swimmers, will challenge the 26-mile Santa Barbara Channel this weekend in the Second Annual Santa Barbara Channel Relay Swim.
The event, which begins Sunday night at midnight and is expected to last about 18 hours, celebrates the joy and wonder of ocean swimming while drawing attention to the need to care for our creeks and waterways that lead into the ocean.
The swim is sponsored by the Santa Barbara Community Environmental Council. The swimmers, who have been training for several weeks with one-mile ocean swims to acclimate themselves to the 58-degree water temperature, will set sail to Santa Cruz Island from Sea Landing in the evening on Saturday, June 18 with 70 swimmers and kayakers aboard The Vision.
Upon reaching Santa Cruz Island the first swimmer will take the plunge for the first leg of the crossing back to the shores of Santa Barbara. Every stroke along the way, the swimmers will be accompanied by kayakers on either side, ensuring their safety and keeping them on course. All swimmers will take a minimum of three legs of 20 minutes each.
The 26-mile swim will take about 18 hours to complete from start to finish. The landing site is Leadbetter Beach, close to the Santa Barbara Harbor and Stearns Wharf.
Swimming World Magazine will be taking part in the event and will post a report on the swim on Monday.