Even cruise ships are getting out of Diana Nyad’s way. The 64-year-old endurance swimmer has powered through the night and is now closing in on her goal of swimming the entire Florida Strait from Cuba to Florida.
If she does, it will be the first time anyone has ever made the swim without a shark cage.
Diana Nyad has already broken the world record 2012 Cuba to Florida swim set by Penny Palfrey. She now has less than about 10 miles to go.
As most fans already know, it’s Nyad’s fifth and final attempt to make the historic swim from Cuba to Florida. Four previous attempts over the last 35 years were thwarted by rough seas and vicious jellyfish.
However, her special mask and body suit seem to be doing the job of fending off the stinging jellyfish that can be abundant in the warm Caribbean waters.
The excitement is mounting. When her social media team posted the photo of the cruise ship steering clear of Diana Nyad’s team this morning, fans responded with enthusiasm.
“If the cruise ship needs help getting into port, just tie a strong rope to Diana,” suggested commenter Carl Lucas. “They better move. Nothing is getting in her way now.”
As of the 5 AM update, the team reported that she was on course to swim 112 statute miles — 35 more than the record.
The original route was planned to be 103 miles, but the navigator made some adjustments to avoid hazards including jellyfish swarms and active shipping lanes.
The estimated time of landing at Smather’s Beach in Key West is expected to be sometime around 4 to 6 PM.
But one worry is that the doctor’s report at 7:15 AM revealed that Diana Nyad’s lips and tongue are swollen. The final miles of the Cuba to Florida swim could be tense.
[top photo by Diana Nyad’s blog]