Escape from Alcatraz swim is a hit

Tourists can complete the 2.4km ‘impossible swim’
A company is offering ‘escape from Alcatraz’ swims, from the Rock to San Francisco. The cold and perilous swim, plagued by dangerous currents, is thought to have killed a number of escapees from the infamous prison island before it closed in 1963.
A group of expert guides is on hand to help tourists and locals complete the ‘impossible swim’ of 2.4 kilometres.
The swimmers are perhaps inspired by movies like Escape From Alcatraz starring Clint Eastwood, based on the true story of three men who escaped in June 1962 but were never seen again.
Pedro Ordenes, founder of Water World Swim, has swum it himself as many as 979 times. The monthly Alcatraz swim has a $205 registration fee.
“Alcatraz is a big draw because it’s very challenging,” he tells a Guardian reporter. “Years ago, people believed it wasn’t possible to swim it, and there was nobody to learn how the currents work. I started helping people when I moved here 26 years ago and it’s grown into more than I was expecting.”
Pedro and his team give a short briefing to the swimmers who gather by a boat at Fisherman’s Wharf at 06.30.
“We will be swimming at ebb tide,” says the coach, Mike. “So that means the currents are heading back out towards the Golden Gate Bridge and through to the ocean. We don’t want anyone starting their holiday in Hawaii a few weeks early, so listen up.”
The Guardian


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