Swimmer Completes 22-Mile Lake Crossing Towing Half-Ton of Bricks

By Chris Jasurek
Chris Jasurek
Chris Jasurek
Writer
August 7, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

Though it took him more than twice as long as expected and he had to halve his load, endurance swimmer Jim Dreyer finished his 22-mile trek across Lake St. Clair to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.

Dreyer set out Monday towing two dinghies filled with 2000 pounds of bricks. He expected to finish the swim 30 hours later at Detroit’s Belle Isle, but Wednesday morning found him still in the water, still swimming, and towing only a single dinghy.

Dreyer persevered, and after fifty-one hours he finally reached his goal. Upon finishing Dreyer told reporters that he wanted to show “we don’t have to sink with the weight of our burdens,” according to AP.

Dreyer, who calls himself “The Shark,” started his distance swimming career in 1998 by crossing Lake Michigan, a 65-mile swim. He has since crossed all five Great Lakes, and has competed in marathons, ultra-marathons and triathlons.

Dreyer has tested himself with a number of multi-discipline endurance feats, such as running marathons and then swimming marathon distances, and also triathlons, running a marathon, biking 130 miles, then swimming 56 miles across lake Ontario on one occasion.

Dreyer, now 49, holds numerous endurance-swimming distance and speed records, often set without a support boat, towing several hundred pounds of supplies tied to his waist or ankle. While testing his own limits, the Michigan resident has also raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various charities through his feats.

Chris Jasurek
Chris Jasurek
Writer