Northern Exposure: Polar Bear Swim 2008

Polar Bear Swim 2008
Canadians and Australians: equally crazy, apparently

Referring to this insanity as ‘northern’ when Toronto is one of the southernmost points in the country is rather misleading; it’s well below the 49th parallel. However, it’s still shockingly cold if you have virtually no clothes on and jump into a frigid lake in January. I was plenty clothed and I got goosebumps just taking their photos!

Madness? It certainly is, and today’s annual Polar Bear Swim around the country was not without a casualty (in BC). In Toronto the Polar Bear Club raises money for Habitat for Humanity by recruiting daredevils willing to send themselves into a state of frozen animation in front of friends and national television.


Perhaps in other places people do it for guts and glory, for the thrill of it, or because they got so hammered the night before they have a complete loss of sensation. Maybe all of the above! But imagine doing this in NUNAVUT — now THAT would be crazy!

More photos in the PictoBrowser below: