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Thank you!

Swim Start Time 22:54

January 5 2021

Causeway Coast

Charity AWARE NI

Swim Distance 1.78km

A MASSIVE thank you every single one of you who have donated so far! I was not expecting so much money to come in let alone the amount of you that have shared it!

As I headed out to swim last night you guys broke the 50% mark of the total! It was a great boost! To date, my small team and I have been doing this alone and it now feels like there is a massive team with us! Thank you!

I have been trying to thank as many of you as I can but I'm sure there have been people I have missed or have no contact info for. We are more than half way there!

The conditions last night were so good I tried to get the distance up a bit more than my normal swims. I will do the same in the next swim, ahead of what looks like at least 36 hours of dreaded northerlies again. The northerlies bring in dirty water and stuff that drifts in the tide so I choose not to swim then and use the time to recover and refuel. I will post some pics tomorrow of the kind of stuff I've seen washed up after the northerlies have passed. I am going to try and break the 30km mark tonight conditions permitting obviously.

Last nights swim was in almost perfect conditions except for two little currents. Beautiful still air with a perfect little well organised swell. I was able to get into a good swim stroke between waves. The big moon that had been guiding my way on other nights was virtually invisible behind thick low level cloud. The white froth that streaks across the pitch black water, after a wave has washed over me, guided my way.

There were two sections in the swim last night that had quite strong currents. On my first lap to the west, one of them worked in my favour for a few seconds and then another worked against me. When I turned to start the return lap, the opposite was true. I tend to swim on my side against little temporary currents as I seem to be able to push through more easily. These currents are usually the water from the surf breaking on the sand bars and then surging off into the deeper water at the edge of the sand bars. They are temporary and in fact its even possible to feel them increase and decrease after a set of waves has broken.

If you look at the charts below of my swim path you will see just how much impact waves and currents have on my path. Every time a wave hits I get moved and after it passes I often get moved back towards where it first hit me. But, regardless, I am still able to keep charging along the coast swimming parrallel to the surf.

Video by Leigh Hawthorne @keto_kiwi_

Info - I am swimming a total of 100km through the darkness, in the darkest and coldest months of the year off the North Coast of Ireland. My inspire those who may be struggling in dark times to keep going. I also aim to raise awareness and funds for the depression Charity Aware NI. We all face dark times in life at some point and it can be extremely overwhelming.

Safety - Please don't think that because I am doing this that you too should do this or something similar. I am very experienced in the sea with knowledge that is only gained through many years of exposure to the sea in all her moods. I have a safety and location system in place including continual contact with people on land every time I swim.


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