Tips for plunging into the new year, polar bear style

Waves are not expected at the Kamloops Polar Bear Swim, but chilly temperatures and icy water are.
Image Credit: Facebook

KAMLOOPS – Several dozen Kamloopsians will take to the water, and ice, on Wednesday afternoon for the annual Polar Bear Swim/Dip and while the air temperature should be a bit above normal, the water temperature will be frigid.

Linda Gayfer has organized a Facebook group page for the annual event and says more than 50 people took to the water last year, though there were many more 'support teams' on the sidelines at Riverside Park. Some swimmers have been taking part for years while others were trying it out for the first time.

Gayfer offers a few tips for those willing to take on Mother Nature on New Year's Day.
- Get there early to make sure you get your own 'little patch of snow'
- Bring a tarp or blanket to stand on; a tarp is good because it stays dry
- Wear as little as possible in the water, it will freeze to you
- Wear shoes though, your feet turn numb and you could easily split your foot open without realizing it
- Bring a donation to the food bank, whether you are participating or watching

Environment Canada is calling for a high of 2 Celsius on Wednesday, complete with cloud cover for the entire day. The swim goes at noon.

To contact a reporter for this story, email, call (250)819-3723 or tweet @JennStahn.

Credit: Stephen MacAulay via YouTube

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