Dark & Cold

2013-Sep-26John Lule the fastest African ice swimmer

The First African Championship in ice swimming was held on the 11th May in the Ugandan town of Jinja. A swimming pool was filled with about 50 tons of ice and 50 swimmers competed for the title. Fastest of all was 16-year-old John Lule who won the price which was a trip to next year’s Scandinavian Championship in Winter Swimming in Skellefteå, Sweden.

An enthusiastic crowd cheered the participants of The First African Championship of Ice Swimming. There were participants from the host country Uganda and other African countries and also swimmers from Sweden, Norway, Finland and the UK.

For three days, the Big Steve Team from Skellefteå and the association Dark and Cold filled the pool at the hotel Jinja Nile Resort with ice. In this way they managed to bring down the water temperature below 10 ° C which is the International Winter Swimming Association’s maximum temperature in order to be allowed to call an event winter swimming.

– It was not easy to achieve this in the oppressive heat. But with persistence and a lot of muscle power both from us in the team and the hotel staff we achieved it, says Craig Dixon, executive producer for the films with Big Steve.


A Recurring Event

Jinja Mayor Mohammed Baswari Kezaala Al-hajji inaugurated the competition by himself doing an ice dip and he now intends to ensure that this becomes an annual event.

Winners were:

Adults and boys: John Lule

Women: Biwaga Trinity

Girls: Athiendo Charlotte Diana


The African Championship in ice swimming was a part of the event Painting the city Bright: www.paintingthecitybright.com