Pat Gallant-Charette - Lake Malawi

Cape Ngombo (East) to Senga (West)

23.9 km (14.9 miles)

13 hours, 5 minutes on 22 May 2023

Observed and documented by Walter Anthony John Muggleton

Oldest to swim this route.



  • Name: Pat Gallant-Charette
  • Gender: female
  • Age on swim date: 72
  • Nationality: United States
  • Resides: Westbrook, Maine

Support Personnel

  • Isak Jacobus Steynberg - pilot / crew
  • Carnelis Frank Lotter - pilot / crew
  • Tom Charette - swimmer support crew


Walter Anthony John Muggleton

Qualifications: Observer training from Howard James. History of military first aid. Managing director at Chevron, was responsible for safety, health, and environment. Chairman of Lake Malawi Sailing Marathon Safety Officer and Rescue Coordinator of Sailing Marathons for 20 years. Pilot/logistics for Lake Malawi open water swimming.

Escort Vessels

1 rigid hull inflatable boat, two rubber duck boats.

Swim Parameters

  • Category: Solo, nonstop, unassisted.
  • Rules: MSF Rules of Marathon Swimming, without exception or modification.
  • Equipment used: Textile swimsuit (Land’s End tugless tank), silicone cap, goggles, earplugs.

Swim co-ratified with Open Water Africa

Route Definition

  • Body of Water: Lake Malawi
  • Route Type: one-way
  • Start Location: Liwewe BVC (Beach Village Committee) fishing club (-13.695850, 34.847878)
  • Finish Location: Livingstonia Beach, Senga (-13.717239, 34.628369)
  • Minimum Route Distance: 23.9 km (14.9 miles) (map)


The 24km route from Makanjila to Senga in Lake Malawi was swam in a tandem by Lewis Pugh and Otto Thanning in 1992. Abigail Brown from the UK failed her first attempt, however, was successful in 2010 and Milko Van Gool was successful in 2013. Mad Swimmers from South Africa placed a Lake Malawi fundraising group swim together in 2016 which can be viewed on YouTube.

In 2019 Martin Hobbs from South Africa became the first person to swim the length of Lake Malawi taking 54 days in aim to set a record for the longest solo stage swim in a lake.

LongSwims Database list

Swim Data

  • Start: 22 May 2023, 06:01 (Central Africa Time, Africa/Blantyre, UTC2).
  • Finish: 22 May 2023, 19:06
  • Elapsed: 13 hours, 5 minutes, 5 seconds.

Summary of Conditions

Feature Min Max
Water Temp (C) 25 28.5
Air Temp (C) 23 33
Wind (m/s) 0 2.6

GPS Track

Trackpoint frequency: 20 minutes. Download raw data (CSV).

Click to expand map.

Speed Plot

Nutrition: See observer log.

Observer Log

Download PDF

Swimmer Statement

What inspired you to do this swim?

I am pursuing the Stillwater Eight challenge.

Describe how you planned for the swim.

Connected through Open Water Africa with Howard James who facilitated all the logistics, including pilot support.

How did the swim go, generally? Did you face any unanticipated challenges?

The swim went extremely well. The pilot and crew were very informative and safety conscious. I anticipated to have a negative mindset at some point during the swim, taking the temperature of the water & air in consideration. However, it all went well, and my feeding/hydration plan worked extremely well.


Click to enlarge.