George Bradbury - Lake Charlevoix

Charlevoix to Boyne City

21.1 km (13.1 miles)

7 hours, 18 minutes on 25 July 2018

Observed and documented by Geoffrey Glaser

First lengthwise crossing of Lake Charlevoix


  • Name: George Bradbury III
  • Gender: male
  • Age on swim date: 56
  • Nationality: US
  • Resides: Tucscon, Arizona

Support Personnel

  • Christoffer Peterson - pilot
  • Richard Chamberlin - pilot
  • Elizabeth Barker - crew
  • George Bradbury, Jr. - crew
  • Geoffrey Glaser - observer

Escort Vessel: 18’ ski boat (Depot Beach, Charlevoix, MI)

Swim Parameters

Category: Solo, nonstop, unassisted.

Rules: MSF Rules of Marathon Swimming, without exception or modification.

Route Definition

  • Body of Water: Lake Charlevoix, Michigan
  • Route Type: one-way
  • Start Location: Depot Beach, Charlevoix, Michigan (45.318602, -85.241752)
  • Finish Location: Peninsula Beach, Boyne City, Michigan (45.211705, -85.018683)
  • Minimum Route Distance: 21.1 km (13.1 miles)

Swim Data

  • Start: 25 July 2018, 07:27 (America/New_York)
  • Finish: 25 July 2018, 14:25
  • Elapsed: 7 hours, 18 minutes, 50 seconds.

Summary of Conditions

Feature Min Max
Water Temp (F) 73 76
Air Temp (F) 65 81
Wind (mph) calm 15

GPS Track

Download raw data (CSV).

Nutrition: Every 30 min, misc. feeds - see log.

Observer Log

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My decision to swim the length of Lake Charlevoix stems from my long family history with the lake. Charlevoix has been our family’s summer vacation retreat since 1902 when my great great great grandfather built a summer home for the family looking to escape the heat of the Midwest.

Generations after, we continue to go up to Charlevoix for vacations. I have so many fond memories of my summers there with family and friends I wanted to find a way to memorialize it. A marathon swim down the length of the lake seemed to be a unique way to add to the history my family shares with the area. I also felt that this would be an extension of my quest for marathon swims that started with Strait of Gibraltar on Sept 22, 2011 ( wetsuit swim, 3 hrs 58 minutes.).

For the Lake Charlevoix swim I started serious training in October 2017. Based on my experience with Gibraltar and Ironman training, I devised a schedule that would allow for my job demands while still being rigorous enough to prepare me. In Tucson open water is scarce so most of the training occurred in a pool. I was able to swim in a few lakes in the area but the distance only permitted these to occur about once a month. In total I swam just under a million yards in preparation.

I was anticipating that doing a swim in the States would be easier than going overseas. What I was surprised by was the difficulty of setting up boat rental, dock space, and kayak support from a distance. In Gibraltar that was all taken care of for me (at a cost of course). I learned a lot about wind waves and weather when trying to decide on the right day and right direction to swim. I was also pleasantly surprised that the water was unusually warm which permitted a skin swim. I had anticipated a wetsuit swim knowing that I would not have enough time to acclimatize to the cold water coming from 80 + degree water in Tucson.

In all, it was a fantastic swim thanks to tremendous family and friends who were willing to pilot me on training swims and support me in my crazy dream.


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