August 14 2009 » Skeena Swim » CFTK News
Ali Howard’s Epic Swim To End Saturday in Port EdJohn Crawford — Terrace, reported by Gilda Diaz
A 28-day, 610 kilometer swim comes to an end tomorrow for Ali Howard.
The 33-year-old Bulkley Valley woman is scheduled to splash ashore at the North Pacific Cannery Museum in Port Edward tomorrow afternoon at around 1pm.
A member of her support team, Shannon McPhail, explains how the idea of the “Spirit of the Skeena” swim came about.
“She suggested having a person swim the Skeena, and she was inspired by guy named Martin Strell who swims rivers all over the world in the name of conservation,” says McPhail. She adds “I said, `well we don’t want somebody foreign swimming our rivers, you swim Ali, you do it!’ And it was a big joke but she looked at me and said, ‘yeah, okay, I’ll swim the Skeena!’ And that is literally how it all started.”
Howard’s goal was to make people aware of how important the Skeena is to the communities of the northwest, and to warn of the dangers posed by industrial development. She says she’s been overwhelmed by the response.