August 04, 2005

And Then He Wept, For There Were No More Lakes To Conquer

Jim Dreyer has successfully completed his attempt to swim across Lake Superior (original DL post here). Apparently the track map doesn't tell the whole story; endgame was a lot more complicated than it looked:

Very quickly a storm had moved in out on the lake and we saw Jim's light moving very quickly across the bay area he was supposed to come into and then we both doubted if it was really Jim or if he could really go that quickly....we soon realized that Jim was in trouble, as the current was taking him past his destination. There was an island out from the mainland that we did not want him to finish his swim on, as he had worked so hard to make the solo swim and was within a few miles from the shore of the outer tip of Cape Gargantua. Tom Farnquist, Chris and another the Captain's Mate (sorry, I don't have your name yet, sir) were out on the David Boyd. Jack and Shelly on shore had marine radios provided by West Marine (thanks to West Marine for your great sponsorship) and we were able to confirm that in fact Jim was being pulled by a horrific current and could not fight it to get into the bay area where all were waiting on shore. Members on the beach continued to shine lights to show him where we were, but the current was too strong. Tom was able to pull in close to Jim to discuss the best plan and encouraged him to get to land to complete his "Solo Superior" crossing. There were several radio transmissions, including the coast guard trying to determine if Jim needed rescure. Tom Farnquist alerted them that he thought he could keep the situation under control and to give him 45 minutes and Jim reached shore at 11:25 p.m. (official time)at the far tip of Cape Gargantua, past the planned area that is remote, no car access, only availabe by hiking. But, a huge success had just occurred nontheless. Jim stepped on shore, got swept back out to sea, and Tom pulled up to Jim again and then convinced Jim to get on his boat, and probably saved his life at this point, I do believe he would have gone back out to sea and traveled another 60 miles before hitting the next shore (WE CAN NEVER THANK YOU ENOUGH FOR ALL THAT YOU DID, TOM AND CREW)that the swim was a success and it was over! The fifth Great Lake, finally under his belt. There were cheers and tears on the beach for happiness for Jim for all of his hard work, discipline and training and perserverance over the past years to achieve this goal.

And I think it's a good day when I can make it an hour on the stair machine. Yeesh.

Posted by Chris at August 4, 2005 02:51 PM

Category: Sports