By Vladimir Brezina
(Title suggestion by Johna Till Johnson)
Each summer, NYC Swim organizes a series of short and longer swims in New York City’s waterways. The premier event is the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim (MIMS), a 28.5-mile race around Manhattan. Along with the English Channel and Catalina Channel swims, it is one of the three swims in the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming.
Each swimmer is accompanied by a kayaker (as well as a motor boat). Last year, I kayaked for the Lone Starlettes, four women from Texas swimming as a relay. And two of the Starlettes, Gretchen Sanders and Pamela LeBlanc, must have had a good time, because they wanted to return this year and repeat the experience as a two-person relay, The Texas Two-Step.
So this past Saturday, I prepared to spend the whole day on the water. It did mean missing the Coney Island Mermaid Parade, but I knew I would be able to experience that vicariously through the photos of Tugster (and, as it turned out, also The Quotidian Hudson).
On the bright side, though, it was going to be the inaugural paddle of my new kayak! It’s a red Feathercraft Heron. Johna, who thinks all boats should have names, immediately named it the Red Heron, which soon mutated to the Red Herring. And so for the Texas Two-Step, this year’s MIMS was a matter of following the Red Herring around Manhattan…
Last year I posted quite an extensive write-up of MIMS 2011 and of what MIMS is like in general. So here I’ll just show some of the photographic highlights of MIMS 2012.
Here is the GPS track of the Texas Two-Step, hard proof that they actually did swim round Manhattan—or rather, that I kayaked round Manhattan, since the GPS unit was attached to the Red Heron (Herring). It appears that we did leave some bits out, especially in the Harlem River. But we made up for it by subsequently zooming up the West Side Highway, at speeds up to 47 miles per hour, and crossing Central Park over to the Upper East Side! (I took the GPS unit home with me in a cab…)
And here is a slideshow that includes the photos above and many more: