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Hurly Burly Open Water Swim- September 16, 2023

Updated: Sep 9, 2023

Please note: this event has been Cancelled.


The Hurly Burly swimming event takes place in Barmouth, North Wales, and is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful open water swims.


The swim starts on the sandy beach and takes swimmers underneath Barmouth Bridge up the stunning Mawddach Estuary.


The swim is 10km long and takes place on a fast, incoming tide that works like a bore to assist the swim. The swim is divided into two parts:

  • First part: The first part of the swim is up the wide and sandy estuary, with mountains on either side. This part of the swim is hopefully with the wind behind, and then it’s through ‘the narrows’ and into a more sheltered part of the estuary.

  • Second part: Past the narrows, the water speeds up further, with the landscape becoming pastoral, and the banks ever closer. The swim ends at Penmaenpool, where swimmers can get changed, gather for hot food, and warm up on fire pits in celebration.

Swimmers should be able to swim at least 7km confidently and be able to maintain a swim speed of 35 minutes or faster (measured as the time it takes you to swim a mile of relaxed continuous front crawl in a pool, without big push-offs). it is recommended that run-swimmers can run 11k in around 1 hr 30 minutes, whilst run-only entrants have no time limit. Swimmers and runners should be ready for a bad weather day (choppy water or a headwind), and for cold temperatures in and out of the water – extra layers of neoprene for swimmers or a windproof layer for runners are suggested.


Due to ongoing work on Barmouth Bridge, this event is still pencilled for 16th September 2023.


The event is run by Swim Collective. For detailed information, tickets and queries, please go to Swim Collective.


Watch this short YouTube video about the Hurly Burly from the "55 Hours" series of films, which documents inspiring new adventurous activities that people engage in over a weekend – from leaving home on Friday to returning on Sunday.




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