Manhattan Island Marathon Swim 2013: Photos
By Vladimir Brezina
Each summer, NYC Swim organizes a series of shorter 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). So on Saturday a week ago, I kayaked around Manhattan with swimmer Katy Dooley. Katy already knew all about swimming around Manhattan, having swum in MIMS in 2011 as well as 2012—but in both cases as part of a relay. This was going to be her first solo round-Manhattan swim.
This year’s MIMS turned out to be interesting, to say the least. Due to a cascading series of problems, some traceable all the way back to last year’s Hurricane Sandy, others to the unseasonably cold water, and still others to the heavy rains in the previous couple of days, only 11 of the 39 solo swimmers completed the entire swim unassisted.
But Katy was one of them! She powered through, finishing 5th (and 2nd woman) in 7 hours, 44 minutes. And by completing her swim around Manhattan, she became only the 69th swimmer to join the elite club of Triple Crown open water swimmers. A major accomplishment on a very difficult day—and inspiring to watch from close up!
I’ll write more about the swim in a future post. (My writeups of MIMS 2011 and 2012 are here and here.) But in the meantime, here are some of the photographic highlights of MIMS 2013.
(click on any photo to start slideshow)
Dawn at Pier 40. Swim buoys are ready for deployment
… as is Johna (she is to accompany another swimmer, Gretchen Sanders)
The new Freedom Tower, almost finished, rises behind
We head out
… to paddle down to North Cove to check in
Across the Hudson, Jersey City catches the early light
Later, at the start off Pier A, the kayakers gather
Nothing to do but snap photos of each other and wait…
Across the harbor, the Statue of Liberty
… and wait…
Finally, the swimmers arrive
Katy has a strong start. Around the Battery…
… past the South Street Seaport
Portrait of a swimmer
… and under the Brooklyn Bridge
Under the Williamsburg Bridge, with the iconic Domino sugar factory
Katy overtakes the competition
Our motor boat provides encouragement
Midtown Manhattan, with the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building both in view
Past the UN Building
Fighting for position under the Queensboro Bridge
Time to feed
Johna pays us a visit
The swimmer in front experiences the consequences of the recent heavy rains
Safely in the Harlem River, Katy powers toward the RFK (formerly Triborough) Bridge
The less said about the Harlem River, the better
Finally out in the Hudson! Under the George Washington Bridge
Spectators watch from the Little Red Lighthouse
Approaching Midtown, an obstacle removes itself just in time
Midtown Manhattan, under gray skies
Past the Chelsea Piers
One final look at the Empire State Building
The finish is in sight!
We avoid boat traffic off North Cove
The last stretch, along the wall
Above, a cheering crowd
Touch the buoy!!
These and other photos are here.
This entry was posted in Kayaking
, New York City
and tagged Kayaking
, Long-Distance Swim
, Manhattan Island Marathon Swim
, New York City
, New York Harbor
, NYC Swim
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Very interesting photos, impressions, we don’t see here so often, never actually ;) ! Greetings from Anja :)
You do have to come to Manhattan to see this ;-)
Wow! Incredible, Katy!
Way to go, Katy!
Vladimir, your pictures made me feel like I was right there!
Thanks for sharing.
Well, the photographer was right there—can’t go wrong! :-)
love. no. sickened by the floating rat. why. just why. ;-)
Thanks for supporting this crazy event with even crazier amazing people!
It could be a lot worse than just dead rats…
And yes, people will do amazing things :-)
Vlad no disrespect to the Feathercraft community but why isn’t Johna
zipping around in Her shiny new Tiderace Xplore a.k.a. Solstice ? :o)
Well, I’ll let Johna answer that one—and she does have her own MIMS story to tell :-)
But the Feathercraft—Baby Vulcan—does seem to me to be the better boat for swimmer accompaniment: it has a lot of volume, and Johna did take along a veritable floating kitchen… it’s intrinsically very stable, whether the paddler is paying attention or not… and Solstice is overkill, because this event involves hardly any paddling at all :-)
In contrast, Solstice came in very handy the following weekend (this last weekend), when we did a fast Manhattan circumnavigation in training for the Blackburn Challenge coming up in July…
Right tool for the right job , that explains it then .And a Well done job at that .
The primary requirement for accompanying swimmers in MIMS is simply to be able to sit in the boat for eight hours, for which the ultra-comfortable Feathercraft seat is eminently suited… :-)
I thought that was a rat! Eeeeeouch! But, the other pix? Super!
It was indeed a rat, one of several. But it could have been worse: someone on the radio announced a dead chicken floating in the Harlem River… I am glad I did not see that! :-)
Oh man! A chicken? Noooooooo! That’s just so wrong!
Well, we don’t have all the details. Was it raw or fried? That would make it all right…
WOW! I love you photos with the city in the background. I was on the Hudson last year but I enjoyed your view so much more. Congratulations to Katy for a job well done. I wonder, Pittsburgh held a paddle at the point a couple years back and they broke a record for having more kayaks in the water. By any chance were you there?
BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!
No, we’ve never kayaked in Pittsburgh… one of the items remaining on the list :-)
You probably mean this occasion… unfortunately, it’s been superseded. That’s the way it goes with records…
Whew I am tired and I didn’t even swim! Good thing I have a nice view right of out your kayak. Thanks!
That’s exactly what I was thinking sitting in my kayak… :-)
Great pictures and story – I had no idea about this! I like Johna’s hat too – I wear something similar when I’m doing my photography on sunny days. It really helps avoid sunburn even though I look like a nerd in it.
It’s a very practical hat! Very effective against sunburn. And it can be very stylish—I am thinking of getting one for myself ;-)
An amazing feat!
It amazes me every year!
Great job of documenting the marathon swim. Outstanding narrative and wonderful photos.
What an awesome day and dual journey! Photos are amazing as usual. :)
Thank you! :-)
Congratulations to Katy! Your photos are great too :)
Thank you for sharing the pictures and the day! Awesome photos!
It helped to have a great swimmer!! Thank you for providing the opportunity to take all these photos, and for a fun (for me, at least) day on the water :-)
And again, congratulations, Katy!!
You never fail to bring it to us! what a cool event and amazing photos – as always….
I bet you were thrilled to be a part of something so important to Katy.
Yes, I was. I’ve done it for a number of years now, and that part is always very rewarding. Besides, it’s a fun day to spend on the water!
Sorry I missed it this year. It doesn’t seem to get much publicity before the event.
Well, it’s a well-known event that you can’t help knowing is coming if you are in any way connected to the relevant communities—swimmers, paddlers, people involved with NYC waterways. Word spreads mostly online or in brief mentions in specialized publications. But the mainstream press or TV—not really. At most, in some years I’ve heard a little item or two about it the day before the race on local radio stations. I guess that’s going to the state of affairs if you have little or no money for publicity…
Wonderful photos, Vlad. Well done to Katy. :)
Thanks, Sylvia—Katy visited here earlier (see her comment a few comments back) and I know she appreciates the congratulations…
WoW!! You really have some playground! ;-)
That’s the point of living in the big city! :-)
Wow…congrats to Katy! It sounds tough…fun for you to be involved, I’ll bet.
It was a great day for her (at least in retrospect) as well as for me :-)
This is like whoa. I love to swim, but maybe not here. That thing floating in the water? These are interesting and cool pictures though even that one.
When you are swimming, you don’t see the things floating in the water. Until you touch one, of course ;-)
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