English adventurer David Cornthwaite finished his 1,000-mile swim down the Missouri River Saturday morning by swimming to the famed Gateway Arch in St. Louis.
“We made it! 1,000 miles of swimming, complete! Amazing!” his support team wrote on Twitter.
Cornthwaite under the Gateway Arch, via his Twitter profile @swim1000
The swim was part of an effort to raise 100,000 pounds (about $160,000) for breast cancer charity CoppaFeel, a lightheartedly titled organization his friend started after she was diagnosed with breast cancer at 23, after having been misdiagnosed twice, according to Cornthwaite’s website.
During the nearly two-month-long journey, Cornthwaite traveled with a team of standup paddlers, camping along the Missouri and enduring high winds, exposure, extreme fatigue, and many miles with no current, among other hardships, according to the videos Cornthwaite posted on his YouTube channel. “He is absolutely shattered. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him this tired before, and I’m quite worried about the state that he’s in,” one of his teammates said during a particularly hard moment in one of the videos.
Cornthwaite also struggled during the final leg into St. Louis. “Dave was cramping, being sick, and fighting to the end of the day,” his team wrote on his Facebook page.
Of course, the group also had a lot of fun along the way. In between marathon swims Cornthwaite chugged beer, visited with locals, played practical jokes, and engaged in team hugs.
Cornthwaite joking around during the journey by swimming butterfly, the most difficult of all swim strokes
The swim is the seventh leg of a 25-leg expedition project that Cornthwaite has dubbed Expedition1000; each expedition covers 1,000 miles or more in a non-motorized way. The first expedition was a 3,618-mile skateboarding trip from Perth, Australia, to Brisbane, which earned Cornthwaite a world record, according to the adventurer’s website, and with the entire project Cornthwaite hopes to raise 1 million pounds (about $1.6 million) for various charities.
In total, Cornthwaite expects that Expedition1000 will take him 12 years, and if he finishes it he will have crossed three oceans, reached the north and south poles, and traveled more miles than it would take to circumnavigate the Earth.
Early going on the Adventure:
All photos from Cornthwaite’s Facebook and Twitter profiles