Grandmother Swims 30 Miles in Shark-infested Water Sets Record

As we age, we often fall prey to the cycle of thinking that we’re limited to doing a lot of things. While that can be true for numerous things, it’s always fascinating to note how some people Can overcome this.

Meet Amy Appelhans Gubser, age 55, a former collegiate swimmer who hasn’t been swimming for almost 24 years, has surfaced into the water arena again in determination to break a record. 

A Determination to Break the Record 

As a grandmother, Miss Gubser has defied her age and weight. She has become the first woman to swim from San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge to the Farallon Island, covering a distance of nearly 30 miles.

Gubser was determined to swim amongst all the hurdles that would scare anyone who wanted to enter the sea. But she braved frigid waters, sharks, and jellyfish, all without a wetsuit.

She leaped into the waters around her support vessel at 3:27 a.m. and swam straight for 17 hours. She arrived at the Farallons after nightfall. An agent of the Marathon Swimmers Federation (MSF) observed that her record is pending verification. After confirmation, it would make her the first woman to complete the swim and the first person of either sex to do so in the outbound direction, from the bridge to the islands.

Setting the Record Straight 

Two male swimmers were said to have completed the distance starting from the islands. However, Gubser succeeded in the opposite direction after three of her previous attempts failed. It was continuously monitored by the Marathon Swimmers Federation (MSF).

The resident of Pacifica, California, told Fox News Digital that due to fog and red tide, she swam in near sensory deprivation. She could see only a few feet above the water and not even an inch past her fingertips below it. She endured such hardships which are considered immensely impressive. 

In shark-prowled waters, such conditions would terrify almost anyone. However,  Gubser entered a “meditative state,” and broke every thirty minutes by snack breaks.

“I had to be very thoughtful and careful about how I approached this swim because of the sharks,” Gubser remarked. “April, May, and June are when a significant migration of great white sharks takes place away from the Farallon Islands. That’s why the swim has to occur during that time frame.”

The Hurdles 

Even amidst the creatures that lurked underwater, she couldn’t wear a wetsuit because of the MSF Rules. Despite the buoyancy it would’ve provided to her advantage. 

“When you wear a wetsuit, your skin rubs against the material, and the last thing I wanted was my skin bleeding near shark-infested waters,” she said.

The water temperatures started in the high 40s Fahrenheit and gradually climbed about 10 degrees during the swim. She maintained a steady stroke rate of around 61 per minute, consuming chicken broth, canned peaches, hot chocolate, and some potatoes along the way.