On one of our days off John decided that he’d check off one thing on his “must do” list, he’d swim across the river without a dry suit. At first you think, ya, this sounds rad, totally doable.
Let’s state for the record that the water temperature is around 46 degrees F. I surfed for the first time in New York this year a day after it snowed and let me tell you, water that cold is really gnarly. Keep in mind that I wore a 6mm wetsuit, with a hood, booties, and gloves, but when the water hits your face it’s like someone threw a slurpee at you. Then, when the water hits your face again, it feels like someone hit you in the forehead with a ball peen hammer, then threw another slurpee at you. Basically what I’m getting at is that it doesn’t just take your breathe away, it physically hurts.
I don’t remember John making any noises on his way across, but I do remember thinking that the current was taking him pretty far down river. Heath was ready with a rescue raft, but if wasn’t needed, John arrived on the opposite shore just fine, but sans boxers. I guess they came right off, not really a deal breaker when you’re swimming for your life.