The Big River Man Comes To WOWSA Live

The Big River Man Comes To WOWSA Live

The Big River Man Comes To WOWSA Live

Courtesy of WOWSA Live, Huntington Beach, California. Martin Strel is, in a word, unique.

He is also driven, introspective, engaging and demanding. Demanding on himself and demanding on his team that he hand-picks to keep him safe during his big river swims.

The Slovenian marathon swimmer has swum the entire length of the Amazon River in South America, the Danube River in Europe, the Yangtze River in China and the Mississippi River in the USA. Strel swims in stages – several hours per day for many consecutive days – otherwise known as stage swimming.

During his stage swims, he swims longer per day than he sleeps. Because the demands and dangers of his swims are so significant, it takes years of preparation (logistical and political) and training. Then, because the physical toll on his body is so significant, it takes a half year to recover. Alligators, sharks, snakes, piranha, bacteria, waves, currents, pirates, traditions and fears are all significant obstacles that stand in his way.

Strel’s motto is swimming these big river swims are for peace, friendship and clean waters. In his upcoming Open Water Wednesday tomorrow, he appears as a peaceful, friendly man who is obviously passionate about sharing an important message about clean waters. With his Colorado River stage swim coming soon in May, his interview is not to be missed.

Martin was showcased in a feature documentary entitled Big River Man which chronicled Strel’s 3,300 mile historic swim of the Amazon and won the Best Cinematography prize at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival.

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Steven Munatones