Nat Waring '82 Swims Gibraltar Strait

This September Nat Waring (’82), traveled to Tarifa, Spain for an open ocean marathon swim across the Gibraltar Strait to Africa.

His father, Philip Waring, shared the details of his journey and the process for the crossing. As Philip said, “Nat didn’t just jump into the waters at Tarifa and swim to Morocco,” and in fact the crossing was very carefully planned a weather dependent.

Nat swam through an organization aptly called the “Gibraltar Strait Swimming Association” that takes care of all the logistical aspects of the crossing. Along with three other swimmers Nat waited patiently in the town of Tarifa for the correct weather conditions before starting the swim. The actual distance can vary between 17 and 22 km, but the swim this team undertook was 18.5 km. “This is a well known swim and well regulated and it’s about as safe as it can get, as long as the swimmers are in good physical health and are experienced, which was Nat’s case,” says Philip, who followed the crossing using an app that tracked the ride-along boat.

Between traveling and waiting for the weather, Nat’s trip lasted four days, while the swim itself lasted for three hours and thirty-three minutes. Although it is unsafe to actually touch the edge of cliffs in Morocco due to harsh winds, waves and a near 4 mile tide movement, the swim has been accepted as an official crossing. Below are pictures of Nat’s group, a map of their route and the view of Morocco from Spain.