California Dreamin’ on a swimrunner’s day

May 24, 2019

Breaking news out of the ÖTILLÖ camp as co-founders Michael Lemmel and Mats Skott announce the first-ever ÖTILLÖ swimrun race outside of Europe.

ÖTILLÖ promises unique races in unique places and they’ll certainly deliver with the new ÖTILLÖ Swimrun Catalina Island on February 29 and March 1, 2020. Located 40 km off the coast of Los Angeles in southern California, Catalina Island is a conservancy-protected, geologic and environmental phenomenon.

Racers in all three distances—Experience (7.7 km), Sprint (15 km) and World Series (38.3 km), which start and finish at the port town of Two Harbors—will get a glimpse of spectacular coastal chaparral and crystal-clear waters home to plant and wildlife species found nowhere else on earth. The average island air temperature between January and April is around 16°C, and the water is 14°C.

There are two port towns on Catalina Island, Two Harbors with a population of 100, and, 25 km southeast, the Mediterranean-style seaside village of Avalon. There aren’t even stoplights in this 2-sqm town where the 3,000 year-round local residents, much like Isles of Scilly, depend on electric golf carts to get around, or walk. Everything is close in Avalon, and there’s accommodation (Boutique hotels to AirBnB) and dining for every taste and budget.

Two Harbors is where all of ÖTILLÖ Swimrun race courses will start and finish but race participants, families and spectators will all stay in Avalon during the race weekend. There will be all-day, round-trip boat transportation between the two port towns.

The easiest way to get there from Europe, fly into Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Take a taxi or Uber to the closest ferry terminal, St Pedro, which goes to Avalon.

The ÖTILLÖ Swimrun Catalina Island website is now live and registration opens in July.

Article first published for May 2019.

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Our 2019 challenge: bring a friend

Swimrun continues to grow by leaps and bounds. Not only has the sport crossed over to the endurance community but new brands, new athletes and new races (and on non-frozen continents!) are coming on board. Look for our new 5-7k Experience distance and the possibility to race Solo.

International partners
  • Vivo Barefoot
  • ARK Swimrun
  • Mr Green