Long-distance swimmer hopes to reach Florida today

Map from Diana Myad’s Web site shows her location at midday Monday.

Veteran long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad has pushed ahead after a night of rough waters, in her attempt to become the first person to swim the 166 kilometers between Cuba and Florida without a shark cage. That’s about 103 miles.

A post on her Web site Monday said she already had traveled nearly a third of the journey. It said Ms. Nyad was swimming strong at a pace of 50 strokes per minute in beautiful weather. Sunday night, Ms. Nyad and her crew were caught in a squall that had winds reaching 26 kph, about 16 mph.

Ms. Nyad hopes to complete her journey through the treacherous waters today, one day before she turns 63. She began the swim from Havana Saturday.

She is using a special device that pulses a mild electrical current to help keep sharks at bay.

A video on Ms. Nyad’s Web site Sunday showed her on a break joking with the crew, singing a verse from the Beatles’ tune “No Reply” and asking about the son of a crew member.

She attempted the same swimming feat last year, but was forced to abandon her trip after painful jelly fish stings.

Australian Susan Maroney successfully made the swim in 1997, but she used a shark cage.

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