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General News · 18th August 2014
Carrie Saxifrage
Mark Braaten was a competitive swimmer for eleven years. His practice is trying to swim in every lake, ocean and creek he comes across, at every time of year and every time of day.
I asked him what inspired him to participate in the Nine Lake swim. Here are his words:
I was very inspired by the idea once I got over the shock that Carrie was actually serious about it! I had been deeply concerned to see the algae blooms in the lakes this spring, and so relieved to see them clear up again this summer. I am happy to make this small contribution.
It has inspired me to train for the event, which has got me into the water almost every day. What a gift!
Hague Lake is amazing, so warm in the summer, surrounded by those beautiful rocky cliffs. I have always been amazed by the crystal clear water. Boaters have always enjoyed the hike up to Hague and Gunflint lakes from Manson’s Lagoon because they are so close and almost connected to the sea.
I’ve swum these lakes in the moonlight and in the early morning when the beauty has brought tears to my eyes. I consider myself so fortunate to experience swimming in the pristine lakes of Cortes Island.
Water is life itself! Immersing in this pure water is deeply enlightening, revitalizing, healing, purifying and grounding on all levels. I think that this is why it is held sacred by all peoples. Native Americans have a saying that I have often contemplated; "there is only One Water". It’s a wonder that the individual molecules in every drop of water have probably travelled all the world’s oceans many times over.
I feel that the way that our community cares for the water here can have a subtle effect on all the waters of the Earth. Swimming is a perfect way for me to express gratitude with every cell of my body.