Ray Gandy, a two-time member of the 24-hour club nearly completed his 50-mile two-way crossing between Newport, Vermont in America and Magog, Quebec in Canada this weekend.

An unexpected, violent, spot storm hit Gandy and his escort team without warning, with gale force winds and lightning less than 4 miles from Gandy’s unprecedented attempt to be the first person to complete a double crossing of Lake Memphremagog.

50-year-old Gandy completed the first crossing of 25 miles, from America to Canada in 13 hours and spent 8 minutes on the Canadian shore talking with supporters before returning to its southern neighbor.

Phil White recalls the evening as he walked back in after 9 pm, “The night was still and the conditions seemed favorable. However, Ray struggled during the night and throughout the morning as his pace slowed. With the rising sun, came southerly headwinds that slowed him down still further. Brutally determined, he broke through the wall and by 2:40 pm he crossed the [USA-Canadian] border, he was swimming strong and at the same pace he had maintained during the first 25 miles of the swim.”

All was seemingly fine, then the general principle of open water swimming (Expect the Unexpected) raised up in its fury. “He had gotten just over 1 mile south of the border, with less than 4 miles to go with completion seeming assured, when we heard the rumble of thunder. Then the spot storm hit with a vengeance. Lightning struck all around us and the winds picked up. Ray was forced to be pulled as we raced for the protection of shore and then south into town.”

As is required in the international border swim, United States border officials formally processed his re-entry to America after his 46-mile 31 hour 5 minute swim.

Gandy swam with a custom-made swimsuit: half US and half Canadian flags as he raised over US$6,000 for IROC’s Healthy Changes Initiative.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source


Join Open Water Source as a FREE Member or as a Premium Member

Register for FREE and see content that is not accessible to the general public.
Better yet, join Open Water Source as a Premium Member and get full access instantly.

Premium Membership:
See What You’re Missing!

Subscription Amount: $5.99/month
Access All Premium Content!

Open Water Source… Your complete source for open water swimming.

Register for a Chance to Win a Vacation!

Open Water Podcast Presenting the Open Water Vacation Giveaway

The Open Water Vacation Giveaway is provided courtesy of Open Water Source. Winners will be randomly selected from among those who register in advance for the 2012 Global Open Water Swimming Conference in Long Beach, California (September 21-23, 2012).

Click HERE for more information about the conference.


[SlideDeck id='7594' width='100%' height='300px']

Click HERE for more information about the Open Water Vacation Giveaway.


[SlideDeck id='3697' width='100%' height='300px']


North side beach at Marine Stadium in Long Beach starting at 9:00 AM

  • 100-meter newcomer swim
  • 800-meter swim (½ loop of the Olympic 10 km Marathon Swim course)
  • 1 loop of the Olympic Triathlon swim course (1.5 kilometers)
  • 3 loops of the Olympic 10 km Marathon Swim course (5 kilometers)
  • 6 loops of the Olympic 10 km Marathon Swim course (10 kilometers)


Register for the 2012 Global Open Water Swimming Conference in Long Beach, CA.

Join us from Friday, September 21 thru Sunday, September 23 at Marine Stadium!

Open Water Swimming Race Calendar
[SlideDeck id='1522' width='100%' height='260px']