Welcome readers to our new blog feature 'Meet the SwimTrekker', a place to showcase the fans who make SwimTrek what is. From long-time lovers of the open water to the recently hooked, we're getting to know some of our most passionate fans and what brought them to the open water. Angela has been a patron of SwimTrek since 2011, starting her SwimTrek adventures in Greece. She has recently joined the ranks as one of our US SwimTrek Ambassadors, spreading the SwimTrek word far and wide across the United States! Read on for our first of many great interviews!
Tell us your SwimTrek story
I started "real" swimming at the age of 12 after being an underwater fish in my younger years. After years of summer swim club and high school swim team, I tossed my goggles aside and did not swim for over 10 years. I dipped my toes back in with corporate challenge races and then got interested in triathlon. When I moved to Dallas in 2008, I joined the Dallas Aquatic Masters and had the chance to participate in a team trip to Hawaii for the Maui Channel Relay. There I met Eney Jones (a top Masters open water swimmer and former professional triathlete) who told me about SwimTrek. I had recruited several DAM swimmers to go on the Greece trip, my first SwimTrek, before we even made it home from Maui!
What you love about SwimTrek
The fact that there are other people from all parts of the world who just want to swim in the deep blue! I've made friends from a number of countries and we keep in touch through social media and plan to meet on future travels. The guides are all so lovely and whip up great snacks and lunches which makes the days even better. I am also a runner and have enjoyed some interesting morning runs before the boat departs for the daily swims.
What keeps you coming back
There is literally nothing better than open water swimming and SwimTrek offers trips at a price point that allows me to budget it as one of several trips I take per year. I've traveled a lot and do a lot of different physical activities but there is just something about being in that beautiful, crisp water, alone but not really alone. It is magical to me and often takes my breath away.
Kornati Islands! I have racked my brain to figure out why this one stands out as the others have been equally amazing (Angela has prevously swum in Greece, Sardinia, the BVI and Montenegro). There was just something about the water. It was slightly less salty, completely flat except for one day and every time you took a breath, all you could see was water and 1,000 tiny islands dotting the surface. The water clarity was really amazing and the temperatures were quite perfect, chilly to jump in but amazing for the swim duration. I also loved that I could manage a decent long run from the hotel to the little town and up into the national park area. It was one of those amazing "reset" weeks that I doubt I will ever be able to duplicate.
We had one of the balcony rooms on the Montenegro trip. To toss open the shutters each morning and take in that view and the sounds...it still gives me chills and I eagerly show my video clip to anyone who will watch it. We also had an amazing group for our Sardinia trip and one of the swimmers took thousands of photos and sent us all this amazing photo CD with music. When I miss the water, I watch it and smile.
For swimming, completing a 10K swim in Cayman. I really wasn't sure if my arms and mind would hold up for that distance as I am not an extremely fast swimmer and 3 plus hours in the water is a long time but I did it... twice.
Which SwimTrek trip is next on your wish list
Galapagos and Turkey.
If you could create a new SwimTrek trip, where would you go?
I honestly cannot think of a location that you guys haven't added... maybe Fiji or Thailand?