Press Release – Dead Sea Swim


02 August 2016

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Lowest Swim in the World – The Dead Sea, 15 November 2016

On 15 November Madswimmer will complete part two of their Hi-Lo Challenge – as they aim to take part in a World record breaking swim across the dead sea from Jordan to Israel.


The team will travel from Jerusalem on the world’s lowest road, Highway 90, 393 m (1,289 ft) below sea level and then swim the lowest swim in the world – 400m below sea level.

The swim, which stretches over 16km between the widest points of the Dead Sea will start in Jordan and end in Israel. With water at a temperature of nearly 30degrees in November – and a salt content 8 x that of the normal ocean – the team are in for what could be a fairly uncomfortable swim!


Madswimmer is joining forces with an international group of swimmers, as well as an Israeli swim team. The international team is swimming for the benefit and awareness of the Dead Sea itself and will incorporate swimmers from Jordan and Israel. Madswimmer will also make this awareness known, but our main focus and charity will remain the sponsorship of underprivileged children in Africa.


The team will undergo intensive training on the 11 and 12 June, in Cape Town – with worldwide hydrotherapy expert, Ori Sela. Ori is the founder and owner of Water World and WEST swimming technique. He has over 30 years’ experience as a professional swimmer, open water coach and qualified Hydrotherpist.

Madswimmer is a South African non-profit company that was founded by Jean Craven in 2009 after he won a R100 000 wager to swim across the Strait of Gibraltar, connecting Europe to Africa. Jean completed the swim with a friend, Tim Zhiel. Feeling sorry for taking betting monies from their friends, they decided to donate the money to charity and Madswimmer was born.  Since then Madswimmer has successfully completed all 6 recognised intercontinental swims and various other open water swims in aid of charity. Among them were Lake Tanganyika (38km, 12h swim), Sterkfontein Dam (17km), Knysna Lagoon (14.5km in winter and during shark week!) and Lewis Tarn, the highest lake in Africa on Mt Kenya (4800m above sea level)


Since that first swim, Madswimmer has raised more than $300 000 USD for various charitable causes, all intended to inspire hope and enable opportunity in children’s lives. With the Zwahili Channel Swim, money will benefit Tumaini La Maishi, the children’s cancer refuge centre in Tanzania.


In December 2015, Madswimmer completed the highest lake swim in the world on Mt Ojos del Salado in Chile, at 6400 meters above sea level with water temperatures around 1˚ Celsius.


Evan Feldman: +27 82 570 9000

Marilet Brink: +27 82 214 9221

Jean Craven:  +27 82 572 2738

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