Swim from Cuba to Florida with no shark cage

- June 29th, 2012

 Shark

 

Is Penny Palfrey nuts? You be the judge!

The 49-year-old marathon swimmer is at attempting an unassisted open water swim from Cuba to Florida. It may well prove to be ‘assisted suicide’ and you’ll see why…

Last week, World record-holder Palfrey swam 67 miles, over open water, between two of the Cayman Islands.  The swim set a new world record for a solo ocean swim. 

Sounds pretty impressive, eh?

The problem was that particular swim was the crew who followed her were forced to kill three sharks along the way, which posed a threat to Palfrey. Two of the sharks were of Oceanic whitetip variety - which are included as vulnerable species on the ICUN worldwide list of critically endangered animals.

Obviously not great for publicity.

Now in her latest record-setting swim attempt, the British- Australian mother of three will swim, unassisted, from Havana, Cuba across 100-mile Florida straight to Florida.

It would seem that ‘unassisted’ implies that her crew will NOT be dispatching any rogue sharks this time, and Palfrey is going with the Grace of God, but that remains to be seen. Although a Cuba-Florida swim has been successfully attempted in past, protective shark cages were usually involved. (I’m sure a few people, over the years, fleeing Cuba’s communist rule have also made the swim.)

So, is Penny Palfrey really nuts? Let’s just say, I wouldn’t do it!

I wish Ms. Pelfrey the best of luck as she sets-off on her voyage this morning. I think she may need all the luck she can get!

Outdoorsguy

Categories: Strange

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34 comments

  1. Rick Poulin says:

    Hey come on Jeff sharks have to eat too!

    To me it is not worth the life of a shark just so some one can pull off a publicity stunt.

    I am not saying Ms Palfeey should not attempt the swim but she should be willing to accept the consequenses and not make sharks pay for her ego.

  2. Iggy says:

    I think unassisted means she has a boat with her but no one can touch her, feed her or give her drinks
    I also think that if someone is swimming in the ocean, and a shark tries to attack, they have a right to kill said shark.
    Same thing if I an hiking through bear country and a bear tries to eat me, it gets dispatched, no different. I know there are sharks in the water, but I know there are bears in the bush, humans have the right to defend themselves.
    You can’t legally kill a cougar in Ontario, but you can to protect yourself, even if your in their territory
    Just my thoughts though

  3. jeff.morrison says:

    Ok guys…I just read this in the Montreal Gazette…sheds a bit light on what their plans are for protecting her from Jaws(1,2, & 3):

    Palfrey will be swimming without a wetsuit or a cage and relying on battery-powered Shark Shields attached to the boat and an accompanying kayak to keep the sharp-toothed predators at bay. The equipment generates an electrical field in the water that Palfrey will not notice, but will annoy sensitive-snouted sharks enough so they stay away.

    Outdoorsguy

  4. johan says:

    I agree with Iggy, if you swim through a sharks dining room you have every right to defend yourself, but that’s quite a bit different than having an armed flotilla with you to exterminate anything in your path. Big deal, she swims for a long time; can she not find a place to swim where nothing has to die?
    What I would like to see is Boston Rob hike ” unassisted” through Alaska covered in bacon grease!

  5. Iggy says:

    I hope she makes it, I’d swim it the other way though, so that when I pulled up on shore I could light up a Cohiba
    :)

  6. jeff.morrison says:

    johan, so I take-it you’re not a big fan of Boston Rob? What brought this on…was it Survivor or his other reality show attempt?

    Outdoorsguy

  7. jeff.morrison says:

    Iggy, I’m with you there…a good Habanos in one hand and a Crystal in the other!

    Makes it kinda hard to swim though….you keep spilling yer beer and the cigar keeps going out.

    Outdoorsguy

  8. Mark W says:

    Its kind of interesting because I have scuba dived with sharks before and they are not very interested in the divers and simply swim around us. This may be due to the fact that they know there is a bucket of food that is theirs on a couple of the dives but the ones that we have encountered in the wild aren’t expecting anything. It kind of felt like the times that we have unexpectedly had a bear come through our stand. Not really sure what to do, more so because you didn’t expect it but your ready to shoulder the rifle/had my dive knife in hand just in case something goes squirrelly. I have been as close as 5-10 feet away from a 10 foot Caribbean reef shark and nurse sharks. We had no cages or protection with these sharks and there were about a dozen of them at a depth of 75ft of water on the planned shark dives. I think the fact that she will be swimming and splashing around is what really creates the potential for danger. She will look like a flailing seal while swimming which looks like an easy dinner. Can’t blame the sharks for their interest and should be considered an inherent risk that she is willing to accept no matter the outcome.

  9. johan says:

    you guys want habanos, just ask. I quit smoking two years ago, humidor is full! Some Cohiba Esplendidos, some Cohiba telephone poles for the golf course, and some nice Monte Cristos.Wasn’t thinking about quitting smoking when I brought those back now was I? Duh!
    Jeff, don’t hate the guy, just think that it would make for entertaining viewing ;-)

  10. jeff.morrison says:

    well johan, you may have to fight Iggy off for the Cohibas, but I prefer the Montecristo’s…#4 usually, or the cigarillos but its been awhile since I even had one…still have a bunch of old Havatampa birch-tipped cigars I bring away hunting and fishing all the time. They must be 20 years old…hehe

    Outdoorsguy

  11. Iggy says:

    I’ll buy them all johon, if they are the real thing not knockoffs

    Jeff, try the BackWoods, I call them Clint Eastwoods, great for walking and puffin or fishin and puffin

  12. Iggy says:

    johan, Jeff knows me and knows how to contact me as well, if you want to sell them

  13. Alps says:

    I have always wondered though how does one keep track of hte direction – compass? too overwhelmed with someone attempting and also succeeded in swimming what like 100 miles – unfathomable … :)

  14. fishr says:

    I like the Backwoods “wild and mild” cigars too. They have a rough, rustic look to them. They come in a variety of flavours but I prefer the “sweet aromatic” style the most. I don’t smoke very often, but I enjoy having these cigars once in a while when I am in the great outdoors.

  15. Rick Poulin says:

    Just read she was pulled out of the water after 41 hours and 149 of 166 km swam. Got to give the women kudos for the attempt.

    No word on if any sharks were killed.

  16. jeff.morrison says:

    As Rick pointed out, Palfey failed to complete the swim.

    http://www.torontosun.com/2012/07/01/swimmer-fails-to-complete-cuba-us-journey

    Sounds like she’s in pretty rough shape too.

    Outdoorsguy

  17. mike jones says:

    hi jeff just to let you know saturday am after leaving costco in kanata i got out of my car and the only time i didin’t bring my camera shit i see a calf mose about 300 lbs just standing on the side of the 417 i managed to run him into the corn fields just beside the 417 but later that night about 2am a friend of my fathers was coming back fron the hospital as his wife was ill they almost hit the damn moose he was standing right on the 417 it woke him up real fast not sure if the moose is still around though would have called the mnr but their rickshaws are in the garage

  18. paul says:

    Iggy. I have an honest question for you. At the top of this article you state that you cannot legally shoot a cougar here in Ontario. Not that i have seen one yet. My question is. Under what category would a cougar fall, because according to the mnr they don’t exist. I am not able to find any reference to them in the regs. Do they fall under fur bearing animals because again no reference. There is also no reference to them under the protected mammals.

  19. jeff.morrison says:

    Paul, it would seem that you’ve discovered a ‘loophole’ in the MNR regs…but as far as other provinces are concerned it does exist and is protected.

    This is what Nova Scotia has to say on the subject:

    The eastern cougar is known by many names-panther, painter, puma, mountain lion, or carcajou. It is officially listed as an endangered species by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) and receives full protection in Nova Scotia. The last documented cougar specimen taken in eastern North America was trapped in Maine near the Quebec border in 1938.

    Seems funny that no dead ones have been found…hmmm, sort of reminds me of a sasquatch

    Outdoorsguy

    P.S. Paul, this (COSEWIC) status mostly likely applies to all provinces, although some choose not to talk about it….

  20. Iggy says:

    Paul, I think the way the MNR looks at issues like this is:there is no legal season, so therefore you can’t shoot them, the only animals in Ontario that can be harvested are those with a legal season, even if the legal season is year long

  21. Iggy says:

    Off to my yearly fishing trip to the northern region of Quebec :)
    I sends a report when I get back, apparently Fush N Canada did a program on this place and they raved about it

  22. Iggy says:

    Here is some interesting reading

    —————————————————————————————————————————————
    Cougars are officially back in Ontario
    Ontario Puma Foundation estimates there are around 550 in the province

    HERE TO STAY. Regardless of how they got here, cougars are a new reality in the Ontario wilds. Stuart Kenn, president of the Ontario Puma Foundation says that if you are lucky enough to see one, they are very likely to leave you alone, unless they feel threatened. John Henderson THE MUSKOKAN — Not every cat in Muskoka is a cuddly ball of fur you’d want sitting on your lap.
    A full-grown cougar can weigh more than 200 pounds and is able to bring down prey as big as a large moose. They are incredibly successful ambush predators and tend to use a suffocating bite to the neck to kill their prey. There is also a very good chance they can be found, right here, in Muskoka.
    According to a recent report in the Canadian Field-Naturalist titled Evidence Confirms the Presence of Cougars (Puma concolor) in Ontario, Canada, the big cats are roaming around Ontario’s wilds.
    Probably the most important thing to know about cougars is, despite their intimidating predatory characteristics, there is no evidence to suggest they are any threat to people.
    “There has never been a confirmed attack of a cougar on a human in Ontario,” said Rick Rosatte, senior research scientist and cougar specialist with the Ministry of Natural Resources in Ontario. “However, if a person encounters a cougar they should slowly back away from the animal, stand tall and try to look as large as possible. If necessary, throw objects and yell at the animal.”
    Also known as pumas and mountain lions, the cats can be identified by their normally tan colouring and white underbody. There have been unconfirmed reports of cougar sightings in the province for years, but the elusive nature of the cat has made these sightings difficult to confirm.
    It was believed since the early 1900s, due to intensive hunting, the Ontario cougar was extinct. The increase in sightings over the last few years seems to indicate a significant increase in the population.
    Despite having more cougars around, Rosatte said there is no reason to believe your cat, dog or livestock is in particular danger.
    “Cougars have been here all along and no dramatic impacts due to their presence are anticipated as cougars exist at extremely low densities,” Rosatte said.
    The cat tends to live in a home range consisting of hundreds of square kilometres. Cougars are almost always solitary, except when mating or when they are kittens.
    Accurate numbers of how many cougars are present in the province are hard to determine, due to their elusive nature, but the Ontario Puma Foundation estimates there are around 550 in the province.
    For the MNR report, 497 pieces of evidence were analyzed in order to confirm the animal’s presence. Evidence included…

  23. Iggy says:

    That should be Fish N Canada

  24. Iggy says:

    INTERESTING
    _______________________________________________________
    Cougars are officially back in Ontario
    Ontario Puma Foundation estimates there are around 550 in the province

    HERE TO STAY. Regardless of how they got here, cougars are a new reality in the Ontario wilds. Stuart Kenn, president of the Ontario Puma Foundation says that if you are lucky enough to see one, they are very likely to leave you alone, unless they feel threatened. John Henderson THE MUSKOKAN — Not every cat in Muskoka is a cuddly ball of fur you’d want sitting on your lap.
    A full-grown cougar can weigh more than 200 pounds and is able to bring down prey as big as a large moose. They are incredibly successful ambush predators and tend to use a suffocating bite to the neck to kill their prey. There is also a very good chance they can be found, right here, in Muskoka.
    According to a recent report in the Canadian Field-Naturalist titled Evidence Confirms the Presence of Cougars (Puma concolor) in Ontario, Canada, the big cats are roaming around Ontario’s wilds.
    Probably the most important thing to know about cougars is, despite their intimidating predatory characteristics, there is no evidence to suggest they are any threat to people.
    “There has never been a confirmed attack of a cougar on a human in Ontario,” said Rick Rosatte, senior research scientist and cougar specialist with the Ministry of Natural Resources in Ontario. “However, if a person encounters a cougar they should slowly back away from the animal, stand tall and try to look as large as possible. If necessary, throw objects and yell at the animal.”
    Also known as pumas and mountain lions, the cats can be identified by their normally tan colouring and white underbody. There have been unconfirmed reports of cougar sightings in the province for years, but the elusive nature of the cat has made these sightings difficult to confirm.
    It was believed since the early 1900s, due to intensive hunting, the Ontario cougar was extinct. The increase in sightings over the last few years seems to indicate a significant increase in the population.
    Despite having more cougars around, Rosatte said there is no reason to believe your cat, dog or livestock is in particular danger.
    “Cougars have been here all along and no dramatic impacts due to their presence are anticipated as cougars exist at extremely low densities,” Rosatte said.
    The cat tends to live in a home range consisting of hundreds of square kilometres. Cougars are almost always solitary, except when mating or when they are kittens.
    Accurate numbers of how many cougars are present in the province are hard to determine, due to their elusive nature, but the Ontario Puma Foundation estimates there are around 550 in the province.
    For the MNR report, 497 pieces of evidence were analyzed in order to confirm the animal’s presence. Evidence included firsthand sightings, scat and hair samples, and tracks. One piece of evidence was a photograph of a…

  25. jeff.morrison says:

    Iggy, I guess we missed you…hope you have a good trip!

    Drop me a line and some pics when you get back.

    Outdoorsguy

  26. jeff.morrison says:

    mike, I never heard of any moose getting hit in that area, so maybe that one made it back into the bush ok..hopefully.

    Outdoorsguy

  27. jeff.morrison says:

    Tks fishr, I’ll keep my eye out for those…hey, do they make you catch more fish?

    Outdoorsguy

  28. fishr says:

    I’m not sure if the cigars make me catch more fish but they do seem to keep some of the bugs away.

  29. jeff.morrison says:

    fishr, that’s the excuse I always use too..hehe

    Btw, did you send-in two comments? I think one may have ended up in the Spam folder..sorry about it.

    Outdoorsguy

  30. jeff.morrison says:

    get out there and enjoy National Fishing Week, it only comes once a year!

    http://www.ottawasun.com/2012/07/04/national-fishing-week-set-to-cast-off

    Outdoorsguy

  31. Iggy says:

    In the Sun today
    ———————————————————
    MUSKOKA, ONT. – Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources have confirmed that an animal killed by police on the weekend is a cougar, long believed extinct in the province.

    Police were called after the large cat killed a family dog in the Muskoka area.

    There have been thousands of believed sightings of cougars in Ontario over the past few years, but this marks the first confirmed cougar killed in the province since 1884.

  32. Iggy says:

    Had a good fishing trip, 14 guys, caught lots of fish, had lots of fun and let me tell you, this outfitter knows how to treat customers. Todd and his son ran probably the best camp I’ve ever been in. We flew in a Cessna180 into a remote lake for a day, did some moose scouting with Todd’s son Adam, who, although only thirteen, you’d think he was twenty five by the way he acted and treated customers. He also guided some of our gang for fish and they always came back with fish.
    There was a nine year old boy in our gang and he hadn’t caught anything so the last afternoon Todd says, “you and your dad hop in the plane”, he flew them to lake X. (secret lake) they fished off the pontoons and they slew them, got great pictures of the kid with a stringer full standing on the pontoon. Just the best outfitter I’ve ever used, and I’ve used quite a few.

    http://www.mooseterritory.ca/

  33. jeff.morrison says:

    Tks Iggy, I just put together a BLog Post on the subject:

    http://blogs.canoe.ca/outdoorsguy/strange/free-ranging-genotype-cougar-of-unknown-origin-killed-in-muskoka/

    Outdoorsguy

  34. jeff.morrison says:

    Sounds like a fabulous trip Iggs..cant wait to see some images!

    You know that’s the sort of service people deserve and expect after paying good money to use an outfitter. Sounds like these people know how its done and good for them!!

    Sadly there are many who dont understand the importance of old-fashioned catering.

    Outdoorsguy

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