Relay Swims

Catalina Channel Swim – August 30, 2022

Are you ready to take your open water swimming to the next level? Do you want to share an exciting, adventurous challenge with other enthusiastic open water swimmers? If so, Water World Swim invites you to join us in our first annual Catalina Channel recreational relay crossing.

Stretching between Santa Catalina Island and Los Angeles in California, the Catalina Channel is approximately 20 miles long. As a six person relay, you will be challenged and exhilarated as you swim through the starry night and the deep blue ocean.

The Swim

The swim begins at approximately 11:00 pm at Catalina Island. Upon our arrival to the island, our first-leg relay swimmer(s) will enter the water from our boat and swim approximately 50 yards to the island’s shore. Upon signal, the first-leg swimmer(s) will start their 1-hour swim leg. Each leg of the relay will last for exactly 1 hour. Due to the 11:00 pm start time, each swimmer should expect to swim 1 leg at night (in the dark!) and one leg during the day.

During your 1-hour swim legs, you will be accompanied by two kayakers, the 65-foot Pacific Star dive boat and possibly a swim partner from another relay team. The swim will end at one of several beaches in Palos Verdes, California. As the finish-swimmer(s) approach shore it is acceptable (and somewhat traditional) for all relay team members to enter the water and finish as a team.

To prepare for this event, you should train to swim for two, one-hour “legs”. Distance, aerobic swimming is the way to go.
Each swimmer should count on doing at least one of their legs during the night time. Swimming in the dark will be a new experience for most people.
Water World Swim will host several night time swims in Aquatic Park leading up to our relay. This will help you overcome any apprehension about swimming in the dark. The reality is that it is an amazing experience!

The Boat

The Pacific Star is docked at the 22nd The Pacific Star Street Landing Harbor in San Pedro, California. It is a 65-Foot dive boat.
Accommodations and amenities on board the boat include sleeping quarters for up to 22 people, 2 heads (bathrooms), 2 showers with warm water (although showers MUST be kept brief), hot breakfast prepared by the crew, hot and cold water, tea and coffee, cellular service and 110V AC outlets.

After our 8:00 pm departure, you will be briefed by your swim director and the boat crew as to swim procedures and expectations while aboard the pacific Star. There is a liability waiver to sign as well as the ship’s manifest. After the
briefing, you will have 2 hours to relax as we travel to Catalina Island.


This event is sanctioned and recognized by the Catalina Channel Swimming Federation. As such, there are rules that must be followed. 

Some of the more noteworthy are:

  • No artificial aids are allowed (this includes wetsuits).
  • The swim must start and finish from one natural shore to the next.
  • No alcoholic beverages are allowed on the boat.
  • Minors under the age of fourteen are not permitted on the boat.
  • Relay teams must consist of six swimmers.
  • Each relay swimmer must swim for one hour each time they enter the water.
  • Team members must rotate in the same order throughout the swim.

If we get 12 people, we can run two relay teams at once. In this case, we will pair swimmers of like speeds from the two teams. Each pair of swimmers will swim together for their hour in the water.

Flights and Hotels

Each swimmer is responsible for their own transportation to the 22nd Street Landing Harbor. If you are coming from out of town, John Wayne Airport (SNA) is 38 miles from the harbor, Los Angeles International (LAX) is 22 miles and Long Beach Airport (LGB) is 18 miles from the harbor. If you are planning on spending the night before or after our swim, the Crown Plaza Los Angeles Harbor Hotel is just up the street from the harbor.

If you will be taking part in the WOWSA open water swim festival, the Crowne Plaza Redondo Beach is just across the street and only 30 minutes by car from the 22nd Street. There is no need for hotel accommodations if you are arriving on the day of the swim and departing the following day.