Category Archives: Sports

A Picture-Perfect Ederle Swim

By Johna Till Johnson
Photos by Vladimir Brezina

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Maybe the magic was in the pasta.

This year, Vlad and I signed up to provide kayak support for the Ederle Swim, a 17.5-mile open-water swim from Manhattan to Sandy Hook, New Jersey. Vlad has done it several times, but this was my first time accompanying swimmers to Sandy Hook (though we’ve paddled there many times).

We’d each been assigned a swimmer, and the day before the swim, the organizers, NYC Swim, sent us the swimmers’ email addresses. So I reached out to “my” swimmer, Andrea Varalli, mentioned that I’d done the paddle many times, and offered what advice I could, including the detailed blogs Vlad has posted on Wind Against Current about his previous Ederle Swims (here, here, here, and here).

Next thing I knew, Vlad and I agreed to meet Andrea and his support team for dinner at a “real Italian restaurant” (as Andrea called it), Piacere. (Pleasure, in Italian.) We had guessed (correctly as it turned out) that Andrea was “real Italian”—not merely of Italian descent. So the “real Italian” restaurant was sure to be a treat!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Silhouette

By Vladimir Brezina

This week’s Photo Challenge is Silhouette.

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Sailing across Tampa Bay at sunrise, at the start of the 2014 Everglades Challenge.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Summer Lovin’, Take Three

By Vladimir Brezina

Catching a wave on the Jersey Shore…

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Catching a wave 2
Catching a wave 3
Catching a wave 4

In response to this week’s Photo Challenge, Summer Lovin’. The first two responses were here and here.

Travel Theme: Clean

By Vladimir Brezina

Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge this week is Clean.

Many are incredulous that the waters around Manhattan are clean enough to swim in.

But it’s true.*

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MIMS 2012
MIMS 2011
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MIMS 2013

These are photos from the last three years of the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, a world-class, 28.5-mile swim around Manhattan, organized by NYC Swim every June or July. (Stories and more photos are here, here, and here.) This year on June 14, June 28, and July 12!

*Of course, you should still probably get your shots first ;-)

Ederle Swim 2013

By Vladimir Brezina

Under the Verrazano Narrows BridgeOn Sunday a week ago, August 18th, I found myself once more in my kayak accompanying a long-distance swimmer through New York Harbor.

It was the day of this year’s Ederle Swim, a 17.5 -mile open-water swim from Manhattan to Sandy Hook, New Jersey, organized by NYC Swim. This year’s swim was in fact the centennial swim, since the first successful swim over that course, after a number of failed attempts, occurred a hundred years ago almost to the day, on August 28th, 1913.

My swimmer this year was Barbara Held, from San Diego, California. Having completed her Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming—the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, the Catalina Channel, and the English Channel—Barbara was looking for new challenges!

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A Stand Up Paddle Board Earns Its Keep

By Vladimir Brezina

Finally! I knew there had to be some use for these things! ;-)

Spotted off Cape Ann, MA: A man on a paddle board tending to his lobster pots.

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His comment: “This is harder in winter.”

Weekly Photo Challenge: The Golden Hour, Take Two

By Vladimir Brezina

This week’s Photo Challenge is The Golden Hour.

One golden hour was here. But I can’t resist posting another one, which was so perfectly golden—

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(Belize, 2010. More photos are here. And yet a third “Golden Hour” post is here.)