On January 1st of each year, hundreds of people head down to Vancouver’s English Bay to start the New Year off with a splash. As one of the oldest Polar Bear Clubs in the World, Vancouver’s Polar Bear Swim has grown from 10 swimmers to over 2,000. Thousands of people dive into the extremely cold water wearing next to nothing, to ring in the New Year at 2.30pm. The Polar Bear Swim has gained considerable notoriety, and garners a large amount of spectators and media attention each year.
English Bay’s 2006 Water temperature was 8.5 degrees Celsius, with the West End air being at a brisk 10 degrees. This, however, did not stop over 1,500 participations from taking part in the annual Polar Bear Swim.