Baltic of Kaniksu Expanding His Open Water Horizons

Baltic of Kaniksu Expanding His Open Water Horizons

Baltic of Kaniksu Expanding His Open Water Horizons

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Ned Hastings is an accomplished white water kayaker, a veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard, and a biological science technician for the Army Corps of Engineers in the state of Washington. He is also an experienced mountaineer, but his speciality is increasing becoming marathon swims and cold water swimming, especially in the Columbia River in Tri-Cities, Washington.

He talked about his longest record-setting swim across Priest Lake in Idaho in an interview with Brad McLeod, the Seal Grinder PT. Listen here.

Hastings explained his alter ego, Baltic of Kaniksu, “In the Summer of 2017, while relaxing at a resort on Priest Lake with some friends, I was jokingly nicknamed Baltic by a friend. My friend came up with the name because it was similar to the name of the waitress that was serving us. Another friend and I thought that was a cool nickname. By the way, this name had nothing to do with swimming in cold water. Swimming in cold water was not on the radar yet. A couple months later when I started an Instagram account. I decided to use Baltic of Priest Lake. Later, when I learned Kaniksu was the Native American name for Priest Lake. I changed my Instagram handle to baltic_of_kaniksu. When my Instagram account turned into a documentation of my open water swimming. The name became my open water swimming alter ego.”

On August 31st, the 55-year-old Hastings also completed the Hanford Reach National Monument Swim, a 53.9 km downstream swim of the Columbia River from the Vernita Bridge to Ringold, Washington in 7 hours 9 minutes. See his video of the unprecedented swim below:

For more information on Hastings, visit

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Steven Munatones