Matthias Kaßner Swims Around Berlin
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He originally had a slot to cross the Molokai Channel this summer, but like many other swimmers, his plans folded due to the COVID-19 pandemic and travel restrictions. “I had to quit my plans so I thought about an alternative swim without traveling and other uncertainties, which would be much easier to realize. After some research and discussions with friends, I found a 30 km loop through rivers, lakes and canals in Berlin.”
The August 28th swim, called the Berlin Köpenick Marathon Swim, had never been attempted or accomplished before.
Kaßner explains, “The beauty of the swim lies in the variety of landscapes and in the different bodies of water. You swim through canals in forests, in rivers along village communities (New Venice), across a vast lake, through the old town of Köpenick with its castle and along deserted factory ruins.
The swim itself is beautiful, but there were many obstacles for me. I got sick very early in the swim and it lasted until the end. I really had to dig deep to continue. After a few hours in the swim, we had to deal with a rope in the propeller of the boat and a lost feeding bottle. There was no replacement on the boat. We had to deal with much boat traffic from ferries to sailing boats and motorboats.
After three quarter of the swim, our boat engine broke down and we had to organize a second boat to continue the swim. With the replacement boat (the crew had to switch boats in the water as I continued to swim), we finished the swim on a small beach in a village called Schmöckwitz where it started 13 hours 7 minutes before .”
Kaßner previously discussed his career and his passion for open water swimming since his early days on WOWSA Live where he discussed the Berlin circumnavigation:
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