Open Water Swim Across Okanagan Lake

Frequently Asked Questions

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Have a Question?

Can I get a refund?

Sorry, we do not offer refunds.

What payment types are accepted?

We accept VISA, MasterCard, AMEX.

Do I need a support person?

If you are swimming the 3.1km distance you do not need a support person. You are, however, required to use a Swim Buddy. For the 7km swim, a support person is still mandatory as well as the use of a Swim Buddy.

I have my own Swim Buddy. Do I get a discount?

Since we are not charging for their use, using your own will not get you a discount.  You will have to demonstrate that your device is in good working order to be allowed for use in our event.

Why do I need a swim buddy?

The swim buddy is simply a safety tool.  It makes swimmers much more visible in the water.  This is important in the Rattlesnake Island Swim, as swimmers can get quite spread apart and this allows our safety patrol and other boaters who are on the lake at the time a better chance to spot swimmers.

But I’m doing the 7km swim and have mandatory boat support, why do I need one?

With the potential for high wind and waves several support people may need to be rescued themselves (It has happened in previous years)!  When a support person goes over, the swimmer is now left vulnerable or trying to help their support get back in their craft. Now 2 people are in the water and potentially not visible to our safety crew and other boats.  Also, when a support person does goes over, naturally other support people go to help them (as they should) but that now leaves other swimmers alone and more vulnerable. So, we don’t feel comfortable relying on swimmers’ support crews to keep them safe.

Finally, should, god forbid, anything really serious happen out there, many support boaters don’t have the experience, or sometimes the upper body strength to hold onto their swimmers until a powerboat/lifeguard can arrive, especially as they will be trying to both signal the power boats while helping their swimmer.  The swim buddy has enough floatation that it will keep a swimmer’s body up if they hold onto it (which is easier than trying to hold onto a kayak or canoe) .

The swim buddy does not add any extra drag, and you won’t even notice it very quickly after you have started using it (and your use of it during the race is included in your registration fee).

Ultimately, we want everyone to have a fun and successful swim, but swimmer safety is of utmost importance to us.

Do I have to wear a wetsuit?
It is strongly recommended, but not mandatory, to wear a wetsuit.
Is there food after the event as in past years?

Yes. As in previous years, there will be a breakfast after the swim. It is not included in your registration so remember to bring $5

Where do the swims start?

The 3.1km starts at Rattlesnake Island, Okanagan Lake across from Peachland. Transportation will be provided to get you to the island to start the swim.  You will board the ferry over to Rattlesnake Island at the 8th street boat launch.

The 7km swim starts at Swim Bay in Peachland. Swim Bay is on Beach Avenue, in front of Community Center and Primary School (6th st).

What time do the swims start?

The 3.1km swim starts approximately at 8:00am at Rattlesnake Island.  The ferry will be leaving Peachland (from the 8th street boat launch) for Rattlesnake Island at 7am sharp!  If you miss the ferry you’ve missed your chance to swim.

The 7km swim starts at 7:00am from Swim Bay (6th street) in Peachland.

Is there a gear check?

Yes, we will have a gear check space inside the Peachland community center that will be manned while you are in the water.  If you want to leave a bag, attach the included luggage tag (it will be in your race package) to the bag and hand it to one of the gear check volunteers.  At the end of the swim, show the volunteer your cap with your swim # on it to claim your bag.

Where do we park?

There is limited parking in the community center parking lot (on 6th st).  Parking is also available along Beach Avenue and side streets off of Beach Ave.  Be sure to park near Swim Bay!

I’ve never done this swim before will there be an orientation session?

Yes, on the Friday before the swim there will be two 30 minutes orientation sessions starting at 4:30pm and 6:00pm. Our clinic coaches (who are both experienced 7km Rattlesnake Island Swim swimmers) will host the orientation sessions at swim bay in Peachland.  They will give tips on sighting, working with your boat support, show you the 3.1km and 7km start areas, and discuss pacing and visualization during the race.  Any questions you have about the swim they can answer.  You can also pick up your race package before or after the orientation sessions.

When and where is race package pickup?

On the Friday before the swim, race package pickup will be available from 4pm-7pm at Swim Bay in Peachland (Beach Ave at 6th street).

We ask that everyone pick up their race package the night before the swim.  If you are coming from out of town and arriving after package pickup ends on Friday night, please contact us and we will make arrangements with you (swiminfo@rattlesnakeislandswim.com).

Inside your package you’ll receive your timing chip, numbered swim cap, instructions and maps, some goodies, and our awesome Rattlesnake Island beach towel!

Are there cut-off swim times for the events?

Yes.  Due to increased boat activity on the lake in the later morning and increased risk of hypothermia and dehydration the longer swimmers are in the water we are instituting cut-off times for both the 3.1km and 7km swim.

The 3.1 km swimmers will have 2 & 1/2 hours to complete their swim.

The 7km swimmers will have 3 & 1/2 hours to complete their swim.

Ready to Join Us?

Swim 3.1km or 7km across Okanagan Lake in historic Peachland, BC.
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