View Full Version : First-time channel swim? Consider Anacapa Island

February 16th, 2012, 11:38 AM
To any current and/or aspiring marathon swimmers:

If you're thinking you might like to swim across an ocean channel, but for whatever reason aren't ready to tackle the 20+ mile distance of Catalina (or the English Channel), I want to draw your attention to a lesser-known but very interesting channel swim in Southern California: Anacapa Island, in the Santa Barbara Channel.

Anacapa is 12.4 miles off the coast of Port Hueneme (south of Santa Barbara, north of Los Angeles), and is part of Channel Islands National Park (http://www.nps.gov/chis/index.htm). The beautiful waters of the Santa Barbara Channel are still relatively untouched by swimmers: only 25 Anacapa swims, compared to more than 10x that number in the Catalina Channel.

Similar to the Catalina and English Channels, you have the support of a legitimate, trusted marathon swimming organization: the Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association (http://santabarbarachannelswim.org) (SBCSA), and a boat pilot (the Tuna Thumper (http://dailynews.openwaterswimming.com/2011/11/just-follow-captain-bob-in-santa.html)) with experience escorting swimmers. Just last year, former USMS Open-Water Committee chair Marcia Cleveland became the 21st person to swim from Anacapa.

Water temps average around 65F, mid-July through mid-September (perhaps 1-2 degrees cooler than Catalina).

For more information, please refer to my article (http://bit.ly/znZP3X) about the Anacapa swim, or the SBCSA website (linked above). Also please feel free to PM me here on the forum.

We hope you'll join us here in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties!


February 16th, 2012, 05:25 PM
NICE! "Like!" :banana:

(I think we need some dancing jellies and sharks)

Is that your house? The outermost one?

February 16th, 2012, 06:06 PM
Sounds like an interesting swim. I enjoyed reading the blog post, too.

February 17th, 2012, 08:37 AM
Thanks for this list. I've never ventured beyond the Gatorman (3 miles, www.ljrws.com) in terms of distance, but hope to do some longer swims this year and get more acclimated to colder water. Anacapa is now on my open water swim bucket list.

February 24th, 2012, 06:30 PM
I don't know if I'm ready to go that distance???

February 26th, 2012, 07:41 PM
so intrigued by this. thanks for posting!

September 8th, 2012, 11:47 PM
This is a swim I'm definitely considering. :)

Roughly what is the cost of boat and kayakers?


September 10th, 2012, 04:21 PM
Think I want to do this. Thanks for posting.

September 12th, 2012, 01:42 AM
Jon and Sue - great! I hope you'll give it a shot. It's getting a bit late in the game for 2012, but perhaps next year?

Roughly what is the cost of boat and kayakers

Cost of boat depends on size, amenities, whether the skipper is USCG licensed or not. The Tuna Thumper (the most frequently hired boat for Anacapa) charges $1250 I think, but that number might be out of date.

Cost of kayaker (including delivery of kayak): There's no standard fee. A couple hundred bucks would probably do it. If you brought your own paddler, you could rent a kayak pretty cheaply (~$50).

FYI paddlers aren't required for Anacapa. You can feed and/or navigate off just the boat if you prefer.

September 12th, 2012, 06:17 PM
I'm hoping for next summer. Slam the Dam is my last race of the season. Then it's time to get the skis out.:applaud: