Lynton Mortensen Pioneers a 30 km Swim Around Lord Howe Island

Lynton Mortensen Pioneers a 30 km Swim Around Lord Howe Island

Courtesy of Lynton Mortensen, Lord Howe Island, Australia.

Lynton Mortensen, the Managing Partner of HBM Lawyers, is known in the open water swimming community as Sea Bull – which sounds tough…and that is exactly what the Australian barrister and solicitor from Brisbane is.

The Marathon Swimming Mentor was the first Australian and 12th person in the world to complete the Oceans Seven – and he swam the seven channels faster than anyone else in history in just over two years. Mortensen also wasted no time completing the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming within 3 months and completed the Australian Triple Crown for good measure in 2020.

While Mortensen is quite a prolific swimmer – by everyone’s standards, his only 2021 swim to date was a 30 km circumnavigation swim around Lord Howe Island, an unprecedented swim around the island. He describes his pioneering swim, “Lord Howe Islands is a most extraordinary place – it is Atlantis meets Galapagos. I have never seen such beauty or as many sharks on a swim – 12-15 Galapagos whalers were circling just below me at one stage. One of the sharks came straight up for a close look face-to-face. I had my family crewing along with escort pilot Jack Schick, a local Island legend of Sea to Summit Expeditions, with Trevor Hendy who Australia’s greatest iron man Surf Lifesaver paddling for a good bit of it.  

I teamed up with Dr. Jennifer Lavers, Ian Hutton, Alexander Bond, and crew from the Adrift Lab in Tasmania and the Institute of Marine & Arctic Studies at the University of Tasmania to fundraise for and helped highlight the plight of tragic plastic deaths of the Flesh – Footed Shearwater (mutton bird) fledglings. If you haven’t had a chance to watch the documentary Drowning in Plastic, it is truly confronting. Jennifer is featured in the show. The wave of change is critical and something we all need to embrace before we kill our oceans. It is truly a crisis. There is more plastic in the ocean than stars in the Milky Way – a tragic, damming, and sickening statistic.

Funds go a long way to supporting the selfless work undertaken by these preeminent scientists and contribute to their seabird and plastics research. The Shearwater of Lord Howe is one of the most plastic contaminated birds in the world.

Mortensen talked about his Lord Howe Island charity swim and the Oceans Seven on the Ocean Protect podcast. Listen to Part 1 here and Part 2 here.   

The 1 hour 28 minute Drowning in Plastic documentary can be seen here

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Steven Munatones