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Ocean Walker

Oceans 7

Motivational Speaker




English Channel Gibraltar Straits Molokai Strait Catalina Channel Tsugaru Strait Cook Strait Irish Sea








The Oceans 7 The Oceans Seven was first proposed by Steven Munatones on 23 June 2008 based on the Seven Summits. Munatones thought the open water swimming community deserved an aquatic equivalent of the Seven Summits.
Achieving the Oceans Seven requires an ability to swim in both very cold and very warm seas. It also demands the swimmer is physically and mentally prepared to overcome every condition known to defeat open water swimmers, from strong currents to stiff winds, from jellyfish to rough seas. Like its mountaineering cousin, the Oceans Seven requires a tremendous amount of planning, time, financial resources and multi-national support teams of knowledgeable local experts. Information taken from openwaterpedia.




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DATE: 14.07.2008

TIME: 11 hours 35 minutes

DISTANCE: 21 miles

Adams account:

"The swim was due on the 10th July 2008, however due to bad weather this did not happen. I remember having to leave Dover on the 9th July (my birthday) to travel back home to Nottingham which was very upsetting. There is nothing worse than getting yourself hyped up for a swim only for the weather to make it not possible. When I arrived back home, I left all my swimming bags in the hall in preparation for the call to go again.
Fortunately for me, it was only 4 days wait. On the 13th July around 8pm I travelled back to Dover on a 50/50 chance of swimming in the morning. We arrived at the hotel around midnight and was due at the harbour which was only 10 mins away at 7.30am. On the way to the harbour I received a call from another chap due to swim the channel that morning as well, he said that a friend of his in the Navy said it was going to be up to 20 knott winds that day on the channel. I said ‘It will be ok, there doesn’t seem to be much wind’ we were in the harbour though!! But I was just desperate to go!! We boarded the boat and headed out to Shakespeare beach where you start.
When we arrived, I jumped off the boat and swam around 200 metres to the beach, cleared the water and siren sounded off the boat and off I went. The first 30 mins seemed fine getting out of Dover and was only a little bumpy for the next 2 hours or so, nothing I couldn’t handle. I made some good distance and was going well. At 2 hours 45 mins it all changed the waves were getting bigger and it was very choppy the choppy water didn’t really subside for the majority of the swim. I was repeating sick for the next 3 hours and it wan’t until they gave me the carbohydrate drink without water that it subsided, which was the advice of the pilot as i think the cordial was reacting badly with my stomach. The carbohydrate drink was in a sports bottle tied to a piece of string. The issue I had was treading water next to the boat with the waves bashing into you which was a real challenge the sickness is a real disaster in the channel as you burn approx 1100 calories an hour and with the drink you take, if you drink a carbohydrate drink approx 500ml every 30 mins you will lose approx 500 calories an hour. Therefore by about 4 hours you will be into your reserve calories and then burning fat. If you are sick and therefore cannot hold any calories down with the feeds, this will happen much sooner!! Having got though this issue, I was fine for the next 4 hours before the next crucial point which was 3 miles from France where tides and currents are changing and anything can happen which in my case did!! There is a buoy that marks out the 3 mile distance from French soil. In a pool this would take me 1 ½ hours. Unfortunately, for me I swam 1 1/2 hours and subsequently due to wind and tide missed the shortest point ‘Cap Gris Nez’ which meant swimming a further 3 miles into Wissent Bay.
When I eventually finished, the total time taken was 11h 35 mins and I was in disbelief when I stood on land having swam all day. A French family asked to take a picture with me and said ‘Have you just swam from England?’ I replied in a very weary state ‘I think so!!’
The swim pushed me beyond what I thought was my limit, you suffer on a different level, you have to block out all the mental and physical pain and the doubt for hours on end. It has to become life and death that’s how important it has to be to succeed".

Adam Walker English Channel Certificate English Channel Adam Walker Adam Walker English Channel




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DATE: 05.07.11

TIME: 9 hours 39 minutes

DISTANCE: 19 miles

Adams account:

“I started at Tarifa in Spain to swim to Morroco with the hope that I would be quick enough to swim back again.
The issue with this swim is that in order to swim back I would have had to break the British record one way which was 3h 30 mins. I said to myself ‘Give it everything and not die wondering', at least this way I would have no regrets! The swim started at 11am, half an hour after I should have, which put added pressure on, as now there was even less time.
I started swimming as fast as possible. Arrived in Morocco in 3h 25mins and received the go-ahead to continue back to Spain. The swim was going great, the sun on our back, the water was warm and it was almost too good to be true. After six hours I came into the boat and was told the tide was changing and had to swim faster.
I dug in for the next 45 mins and gave it everything. Coming back into the boat for the next drink, my energy levels were low, it was just shy of seven hours and I felt really tired, but the desire to succeed pushed me on. The tide was pushing me away from the coast and I was so concerned the swim was over. I pressed on regardless and for the next two hours I looked at the boat waiting for them to pull the swim due to the tides, but nothing happened.
By the time I hit nine hours I could see rocks in the distance but still didn’t believe it. I sprinted towards the rocks and finally arrived in 9h 39mins
By completing the swim I was the first British person to swim both ways and the sixth in the world. It was a great feeling!”

Adam Walker Strait of Gibraltar Adam walker 2 way Gibraltar




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DATE: 21.06.12

TIME: 17 hours 2 minutes

DISTANCE: 26 miles



"Because of extremely bad currents, Adam could not get in at Sandy Beach - the traditional and closest finish point,” reported Hawaiian channel legend Linda Kaiser. Adam had predicted a 14-15 hour swim on his third leg of the Oceans Seven, but he was not about to quit until he got the job done. As tides kept on driving him from being able to head into the coast, he kept on swimming southward around the island, constantly driving to find the one break that would allow him closure. “He couldn’t get in at Sandy Beach...or Portlock...or Kahala,” Kaiser recalls. “He finally arrived at the Diamond Head lighthouse around 11 pm. He got hit by a Portuguese Man O War and scraps from coming over the reef, but he did it.” Adam said “That is the hardest swim I have ever done. I’ve done the English Channel andMorocco to Spain, but uhh... it’s all over. Pain only lasts for a minute, success lasts for a lifetime that’s what they say,” said Adam to local TV station KHON.




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DATE: 16.10.12

TIME: 12 hours 15 minutes

DISTANCE: 21 miles


Adams account:

Adam finished his 12 hour 15 minute crossing of the Catalina Channel on behalf of Sports Aid, and continued his steady climb up the Ocean Seven rankings. And like his fellow adventurers, Walker is constantly reminded in his travels around the world that the Oceans Seven is always a daunting task and each channel presents unique challenges and a never-ending battle against nature.
"Conditions in Catalina were very unusual foggy so I couldn’t see land until I was 150 yards away from shore. This was very demoralizing as I never felt I was getting any closer." If it was not external forces throwing up obstacles, Walker was also facing inner demons. "The swim started at midnight. I was repeatedly sick for the next 3½ hours, I felt completely drained of energy after 4½ hours and hit a huge wall." But the famed Oceans Seven swimmers are well-known for their going over or through walls! "After 5 hours I was over halfway across. I told myself I had been tired like this before and pressed on. Light came up at 6:30 am, which made me feel upbeat. However, the sun was covered due to the fog so the air temperature was still cool." Compared to the English Channel, North Channel and Cook Strait, the Catalina Channel is not known for being a cold-water channel, but circumstances always differ for each swimmer. "I was cold throughout, although the temperature was around 19-20°C. However, I had much less fat this time so felt it more. With 3 miles to go, my left shoulder started to pack in and the temperature dropped by 3°C to 17°C which was expected. But it instantly gave me the shivers. I was cold throughout due to being repeatedly sick and having no warm drinks in my body. I had the fire service follow me in for the last 3 miles to encourage me which was great. I also had some seals follow me behind at some points". But land and his finish made it all worthwhile. "The best part of the swim was eventually seeing land - which seemed to take forever - and knowing that another one of the Oceans Seven is ticked off the list."
4 down, 3 to go!




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DATE: 12.08.13

TIME: 15 hours 31 minutes

DISTANCE: 15 miles


Adams account:

I arrived Sat evening 12th Aug in Japan very tired after a 12 hour flight. The next day I went to see the pilot and Japanese translator and was told we were going at 2am the next morning!! I was a little concerned with how tired I was. The journey was extremely rough when we set off at 2:30am and it was uncertain if the swim would go ahead. Arriving at the start the water had calmed so I started the swim at Honshu at 5:30am. There was no turning back now!! I began with a steady pace keeping the nerves under control! I know the first 2 hours are always the worst for me. 30 minutes in, a big wave smacked me in the face and I swallowed a mouthful of salt water and was instantly sick. I carried on and tried to forget about it. Shortly after being sick, I got stung in the face by jelly fish that were so small I couldnt even see them!. After 2 hours I decided to have drinks every 30 mins but I just could't keep them down!! At 4 hours I was then told that the current was trying to push me sideways at 2 mph, so I had to sprint for 20 minutes, rest for 5 and then sprint again. This went on for 6 hours on and off. At 10 hours into the swim and tired from doing sprint sets, I was told I could take it easy for a while. This is when the 10 foot waves arrived for the next 2hrs 30 mins. This took everything out of me and I've never breathed so hard in my life!! As the waves seemed to subside I could see land. For the first time believed I could make it!! However this channel still had more plans for me it seemed!! With 1.5 miles to go the current held me back again and after an hour I had gone backwards with now 2 miles to go! The sun was going down and my next concern was that there would be sharks. Sure enough I saw a 6 foot shark swim underneath me!! The boat had stayed ahead slightly during the large waves so I shouted to them to wait while I caught up. I then swam another hour and then got the word that the current had stopped and I had 800 metres to go. Sprinting like my life depended on it, 50 strokes then another!! I was aiming for a lighthouse. At this point my left shoulder had packed in and I had a terrible pain in the middle of my right shoulder but I was determined to finish!! I eventually got in 15 hours 31 mins and it was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life!!! The translator said to me she was very emotional watching what I went through to conquer the swim. The boat pilot said I was the strongest swimmer he'd ever seen which was a massive complement as there has been so many great swimmers before me.


I am the first British person to complete the crossing and the 17th in the world. 5 down 2 to go!



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DATE: 22.04.14

TIME: 8 hours 39 minutes

DISTANCE: 14 miles

Adams account:

"On the day of the swim I woke up early and spent 4.5 hours with my mp3 playing motivational speeches and quotes, trying to blank out any demons. I felt like a lot was riding on this one. It was the first time I had a GPS tracker so I knew people would be watching me from back home and other countries. When I met Phil the day before he had said ‘It was the best of a bad week', that morning I felt like there was an anxiousness about him as if it was imperative we started as soon as possible. With 10 mins to go to the start I got greased up and just before I jumped in I was sick over the side, I think through motion sickness but maybe a bit of nerves as well. I then jumped in swam to the nearest rock and off I went. I felt like I quickly got into a good pace however I was a little restless which was picked up by Phil when I came in for my first feed. He said you’ve covered 4.3k ‘now bloody calm down or I’ll hit you over the head with a paddle!!’ This made me chuckle and had the desired effect as I did calm down after a quick Powerade feed I was off and more relaxed. During the second hour I continued making good ground, however my legs felt like jelly and felt unusually tired. I put it down to jet lag. Struggling on with the sickness Phil tried me with a Leppon Gel drink, which had less sugar and was a good balance of carbs. Unfortunately the sickness continues until hour 3 and I was still feeling flat but we were half way. Just after the 3rd hour feed out of nowhere I saw a fin powering towards me so fast it was infront then underneath in a second. It turned out to be a dolphin but not just one a whole pod!!! Within seconds I had a dolphin posse surrounding me. I couldn’t believe it the whole thing was incredible. I forgot about the sickness and how flat I was and just felt so privileged to be out there with them. I wanted to savor every moment. After about 15mins I thought I had best get my head down and swim harder and this is when I saw a shark below me lurking in the deep. I didn’t concern myself too much as being surrounded by the dolphins somehow made me feel protected by them and I didn’t want to waste any energy with concern or worry anyone unnecessarily on the boat. If I had told them, they would have likely got me out of the water and that would have been my swim over! All the training and cost for this swim would have been for nothing, and I dont give up that easily. I looked down a few times to see where it was and after a while it just disappeared out of site. I have experienced sharks on the Tsugaru and Molokai swims and its not that you get used to it, but you have to try and block it out as you have a job to do. The dolphins stayed with me for over an hour, it was a very surreal experience, like they were my swimming partners, there to give me a boost and see me through a difficult time. I will never know for sure the reason they swam with me for so long at my pace. It is not common for wild dolphins to do this. It makes me wonder what else was going on down there. I remember after around 1 hour 15 mins Phil saying ‘Try and concentrate I know they are distracting’ this was to try get me back into my swimming groove. He was right as I was distracted but who wouldn’t be with this once in a life time experience. At that point I remember thinking I need to take my mind off the dolphins and focus, so I got my head down and focused on the job in hand. The Dolphins went on their way and I did a reasonable 30 mins. I came in for another drink, this time I had warm water and some nice home made soup Gemma had made to settle my stomach. This did settle me and I continued on. Everything was fine for the next 1.5 hours although I still didn’t feel 100%. Then at appprox 5 hours in Phil started furiously waving me on to push harder. I then thought this is what I’ve trained for, time to forget sickness and tiredness and pick up the pace. I did this straight away and had no idea how long I would have to hold it for. We were heading past two huge rocks known as ‘The Brothers’ and the current was pushing me towards them which would be an issue. I knew I could hold a strong pace through will power as I had to do it many times across the Tsugaru Strait and I seem to be at my best when I’m under pressure. Phil was punching the air shouting ‘Yes Yes!!’ this spurred me on. I continued at the faster pace for around 1 hour 15 mins missing a couple of feeds. We managed to get past the ‘Brothers’, the increase in pace potentially saved the swim. The final 3k took over 1 hour to get in due to currents. My final approach was one of relief!! I swam in and touched the rock - DONE! I swam back to the rib that had been alongside me the whole time with Gemma and Phil and we whizzed back to the main boat. This swim was my most enjoyable to date, one which reminds me why I love this sport so much!! I would like to take the opportunity to personally thank each and everyone of you for following me and supporting me through this swim. I am blown away by it all and can’t really fully put into words what it means to me."

Adam Walkers Cook Strait Swim Map









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DATE: 06.08.14

TIME: 10 hours 45 minutes

DISTANCE: 22 miles




Adams account:

Adam left Donaghadee from Robbies Point at 6:45am. The sea was calm which meant early on, the Lions Mane Jelly Fish were in force.
"What I was not prepared for, was quite how big they can be. However, after a few stings, you realise their bark is worse than their bite!"
There were no Dolphins this time. Although the crew saw Pilot Whales in the distance and Adam spotted a sheeps skull on the ocean bed.
The swim went straight forward until the end, where Adam had 3km to go after 8hrs 30mins and the current started to move him to the East, which meant no record was possible. Adam finished approx 2 miles from the planned finish point at 5:30pm on Wed 6th August 2014.
Adam says "I am ecstatic to finish 7 out of 7 swims on the first attempt!"
The Pilot, Quinton Nelson, his son Jordon and Observer Gary Knox are a fantastically helpful team.
"I would like to thank everyone for all the support I have had over the past 7 years to make this dream a reality. Without this, completing the challenge would not have been possible".
So whats next we ask?
After 2 channel swims in one year, I think we can safely say that Adam will take the remainder of 2014 in his stride, but we look forward to finding out what Adams next venture will be very soon!

Photo courteosy of Jim Ryder - Stranraer

    Adam Walkers North Channel Map