Local swimmers to ply the challenging waters of the Great Bear Rainforest

spirit orcas

The IMAX film, Great Bear Rainforest continues to be featured at the Royal BC Museum this week.

The 42-minute film immerses you in the last intact temperate rainforest in the world with its diverse species of wildlife.

Someone who has been up close and personal with that area of the province is Victoria open-water, ultra-marathon swimmer, Susan Simmons.

Simmons who has multiple sclerosis has completed various open-water swims in our region culminating in a swim across Juan de Fuca Strait last summer in a little over 10 hours. In July, she will head up to Great Bear for her fourth year of plying those waters.

Simmons coaches developmentally-disabled adults and will be taking a group of swimmers with her to challenge them in a 30-kilometre swim.

"So each one will go in for one hour, and they rotate through the que in relay style, and it will take anywhere from eight to 14 hours.  This is where my inspiration comes from to swim when I see people in that community doing things like this.  If they can do this it just shows you anybody can do anything."

These six swimmers, make up a group called the 'Spirit Orcas', and are now in a three to five year training program to cross the English Channel.

You can contribute to the Spirit Orca’s journey to Great Bear: www.gofundme.com/spirit-orcas

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