Research Blog Antarctica #31

Non-fiction: Lynne Cox: Swimming to Antarctica (2004, Harcourt)

A professional autobiography of the long-distance swimmer Lynne Cox, this is really a quite engaging book about swimming in various, increasingly inhospitable environments. The connection to Antarctica is only a part of the book. She swims to the continent from a mile offshore, and spends over 20 minutes in zero degree water without, you know, dying.

The interesting stuff from my perspective is, of course, the detail and description of what it feels like to swim in exceedingly cold water. Apart from this, the stories themselves are often quite hair-rising with all the swimming in shipping lanes in a fog, swimming in shark-infested waters and braving death from cold-induced heart attack involved.