SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— Hundreds of swimmers took a chilly plunge into the San Francisco Bay Monday. About 400 shivering swimmers were on the shore at Crissy Field after taking the 8 a.m. Orca Alcatraz Challenge Swim.

It was a choppy mile and a half journey from the island to the shore, but swimmer Lisa Zinassi said with all the zigzagging, it’s more like two miles.

Another swimmer 14-year-old Abbey Hirst came all the way from Chesterton, Indiana to swim with her brother and father.

“There were some big waves and the current— I didn’t think was that bad. I did have a little trouble sighting where I was supposed to go, so I stopped a lot,” Hirst said.

KCBS’ Tim Ryan Reports:

The race begins with swimmers jumping off the CA Hornblower yacht near Alcatraz and swimming for shore.

Sidney Harnack from Edmonton, Alberta Canada won her age division with a time of 36 minutes.

“[It was] my first time in the ocean. Oh my god, it’s so much different [than a pool]. The waves were unreal, they were so big,” Harnack said.

She concluded that no one truly ever did escape from the prison island.

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