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Gus Brickner

From Openwaterpedia
Gus Brickner in the Deep Creek Lake in Maryland
Gus Brickner, the Human Polar Bear on his winter swims

Gustave "Gus" Brickner, nicknamed the Human Polar Bear, was an American steelworker and cold water swimming specialist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Open Water Swimming Career[edit]

  • Brickner swam an annual New Year's Day Swim in the Allegheny River.
  • He completed an open water swim across the Monongahela River on 24 January 1963 when the air temperatures dropped as low as -18ºF (-27ºC).
  • Brickner's had two unsuccessful attempts across the English Channel in 1957 and 1959.
  • Brickner logged more than 38,000 total miles before he died at age 79 in 1991.
  • Brickner swam 16 miles across Deep Creek Lake at 2,461-feet altitude at the age of 46 on 23 August 1958 from Green Glade Inlet to Deep Creek Lodge at McHenry in 8 hours 10 minutes.
  • Brickner often broke the ice to go for a mid-winter swim.

External links[edit]