Jaimie Monahan - Lake Memphremagog
24.8 miles (39.9 km)
14 hours, 18 minutes on 10 July 2017
Observed and documented by Phil White
- Name: Jaimie Monahan
- Age on swim date: 38
- Nationality: United States
- Resides: New York, NY, USA
- Phil White - pilot and observer
- Arik Thormahlen - crew
- Django - escort boat
Category: Solo, nonstop, unassisted.
Rules: MSF Rules of Marathon Swimming, without exception or modification.
Length of Lake Memphremagog: Newport, Vermont, USA to Magog, Quebec, Canada (roughly north to south).
- Route Distance: 24.75 miles (39.9 km)
- Route Type: one-way
- Start Location: City Docks, Newport, VT (44°56’12.5”N, 72°12’43.8”W)
- Finish Location: Beach near Parc de la Pointe-Merry Public Beach, Magog, QC (45°16’04.2”N, 72°09’37.5”W)
|south of Georgeville||45.132891||-72.262745||22.8|
- Start: 10 July 2017, 06:23 Eastern Daylight Time.
- Finish: 10 July 2017, 20:44.
- Elapsed: 14 hours, 18 minutes
Summary of Conditions
|Wind||calm||light, variable direction|
Other Notable Events: Pleasant but rainy grey way with a few patches of sun. Almost no other boat traffic, incredible sunset.
Trackpoint frequency: . Download raw data (CSV).
After visiting beautiful Lake Memphremagog during the winter for their annual Winter Swimming Festival the past few years, I really loved the area and was looking forward to seeing the lake in summer. In particular I had been wanting to do the “In Search of Memphre” swim event for several years now, but the dates never seemed to work out for me. When I heard Kingdom Swims was offering individual swims I jumped on the opportunity and worked with Phil White to set a date.
Lake Memphremagog was the site of the professional race La Traversée Internationale du Lac Memphrémagog for years, attracting many of the world’s top professional swimmers, but unfortunately the swim was discontinued. Phil White organized the first “In Search of Memphre” event in 2011 and it has continued each year since. The Search is just one of the awesome events that Phil and the NEKOWSA and Kingdom Games team puts on each year, including running races, cycling events, ice skating, the Winter Swim Festival, and summer swim events of all distances.
In terms of organization, Phil took care of everything for us, all we had to do was show up which was amazing! It’s obvious the joy and pride Phil takes in his amazing Lake and it was such a pleasure to be part of it for a day.
On the day of the swim we packed up around 4am, loaded the cars and took the boat and supplies to the Newport Town Dock. We sunscreened up just after sunrise and Arik and Phil headed out in the wooden dory Django. As they pushed off, Arik lost his sunglasses near the dock. I walked in around 6:23am and tried to look for his sunglasses in the clear water but no luck. Started to swim and we headed north. It was a bit of a grey morning, but pleasant. As expected, it started to rain after a while and for the rest of the day it rained on and off. Tons of amazing scenery along the way, small islands, lots of green foliage, cute waterfront cottages and even a beautiful monastery.
Phil knows the lake like the back of his hand and took us on a perfect course, expertly avoiding the eddys that can be strong in this late. At some point my goggles snapped right in half which is odd because they are a pretty thick solid plastic bridge. (Maybe the magic of Memphre!) Luckily we had a spare, I swam without googles for a bit which was actually nice in the clean fresh water until we were able to change out. We managed to avoid any thunderstorms and coming into Magog there was the most beautiful sunset. It was such a treat to see for the last couple of miles of the swim.
As we came into the public beach, we saw a small ferry with an statue of Memphre along the top. It was so cute and really cool to see the silhouette against the setting sun. The boat went right in with me and I walked up onto the beach and just sat in the water for a while. The weather was supposed to worsen overnight with high winds and thunderstorms so Phil made the excellent call to head back after the swim.
There were great public showers about 50 yards away from the landing spot, with lovely hot water which warmed me right back up. We got most of the zinc off, got dressed, and headed back on the boat. The trip back took a couple of hours, I was falling asleep a bit but it was neat to speed across the lake in the dark. We got back to Newport around midnight, Phil and Arik cleared our trip with the border authorities (Phil had let them know our plans in advance) and then headed home. We slept in the next morning and shared stories of the swim over a delicious breakfast at the adorable Brown Cow Restaurant in Newport. There is so much to see in this area and they have other great restaurants like the Eastside Restaurant & Pub, I wish we could have stayed longer but I know we will be back soon for a future Kingdom Games event!
Click to enlarge.
Swimming in the rain…looooove it.
Swimming under the most gorgeous sunset at about 23 miles into our swim…what an incredible lake.
“I found her!” So happy to see Memphre at the finish after 25 miles.