Escape from Alcatraz: a swim from the Rock to San Francisco

The cold water and tricky currents of San Francisco Bay make the crossing from Alcatraz a daunting one, but a group of expert guides is helping hardy souls complete the ‘impossible swim’

With a graceless leap I plunged from the safety of the boat into San Francisco Bay, cursing myself for the foolhardiness of willingly reconstructing the most infamous and desperate prison escape in history. Alcatraz loomed large above as I bobbed up and down in the cold swell, and the city seemed impossibly hard to reach under my own steam.

What is with our enduring fascination with Alcatraz? Why has “The Rock”, which once housed the most reluctant of recalcitrant prisoners, become one of the biggest tourist attractions in America and also a bright flame to brainless moths like me who cannot resist an irrational adventure challenge?

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