SF Weekly | The Endless Swimmer

     June 12, 2002

    When people learn that Pedro Ordenes, 55, has swum to or from Alcatraz 126 times, or that he crossed the Strait of Magellan in 39-degree water, they often joke about his sanity. That's before they hear about his idea to swim the Bering Strait.

    People call Pedro Ordenes crazy a lot. It's an off-the-cuff sort of thing, a joke. But you wonder.

    Maybe the word comes up so often because Ordenes, who is 55 years old, has swum between San Francisco and Alcatraz Island 126 times, more than anyone else in the world. Or because two years ago he swam across the treacherous Strait of Magellan -- two hours in 39-degree water without a wet suit, which plummeted his core body temperature to 92 degrees. Or because now he is contemplating swimming across the Bering Strait near the Arctic Circle.

    Continued on sfweekly.com