Grandson of Grand Lakers swims Strait of Gibraltar
Jacob Miyauchi, 16, of Kingman, Ariz., the grandson of Pauline and Fred Miyauchi and the nephew of the owners of Miyauchi’s Snack bar in Grand Lake, recently completed an open water swim across the Strait of Gibraltar, making him the youngest American to complete the swim and one of only 400 people worldwide.
Miyauchi completed the 15.5 mile swim from the tip of Spain to the coastline of Morocco in only five-and-a-half hours, despite the five to eight foot swells, 20 mile per-hour winds, and 68 degree water.
To complete a swim of this magnitude, the 16 year-old trained 6 days a week for 10 months. Some may think swimming 15.5 miles in the open ocean is just plain crazy, but Miyauchi describes it a different way.
“It’s a neat feeling to be out in the open ocean and exposed to the elements,” Miyauchi said. “I just love swimming and I love the open water.
“The cold factor was the biggest challenge,” he said. “You just have to keep swimming to stay warm but if you are not careful, hypothermia will set in.”
Miyauchi also swims for the Kingman Dolphins Swim Team, where he prefers freestyle distance races. Coincidentally, dolphins surrounded Miyauchi for the last leg of the swim across the Strait of Gibraltar.
He is starting to make plans for his next open water swim and hopes to do something a little closer to home this time, possibly the Catalina Island of California.
Reid Tulley can be reached at 970-887-3334
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