MEET ROBBIE, CALUM AND JACK HUDSON...
Three brothers from the rugged, pastry-crusted outback of Northern England. They grew up swimming together in the lakes, tarns and rivers of the Lake District. Back then life glittered with intervals spent in nature: BBQs on beaches, human raft races down river rapids, jumping contests from piers and rocks and smoky campfire circles in the surrounding forests. It was simple stuff, but something they lamented greatly after stumbling into that deathly clinch of later life, commonly referred to as... adulthood.
Over time the brothers noticed how themselves and all the folk they knew were drifting away from the natural world. Working in cities, they suddenly felt the weight of life in the urban grind - the common monotony of a nine-to-five, when the only wildlife you see is the occasional head-bobbing pigeon or raucous seagull.
At the same time, they also felt themselves swirling down into a sad cycle of apathy, detachment and depression. Many of their friends had fallen into similar patterns of emotion. Social anxiety seemed to be commonplace, as though the absence of nature and wild company was taking its toll on society at large.
And so, intent on dragging anyone who was up for it along for the ride, they decided to reunite and change their course. Thus, like a big, beautiful butterfly unfolding from its chrysalis, the Wild Swimming Brothers were born...
Little brother Jack (26) - the youngest of the Hudson brothers - is the author of Swim Wild. Writer, animal-lover and lumbering Merman. During his teens he worked as a Lifeguard and earned his scuba chops diving in The Philippines and Indonesia. He still feels very at home in the water and can often be found floating along on the surface, when he really should be swimming.
Middle brother Calum (28) holds that irksome middle spot. He's the one who first poked the other two out of their cosy Hobbit holes and dreamed-up the River Eden swim. Through the week he works as a Sales Manager at Eventbrite. By the time the weekend rolls around he's usually off outdoors somewhere, getting stuck into extreme triathlons, from Celt Man to The Double Brutal. Nature was his first love, ever since he tumbled into a thick encyclopaedia and made a sport of memorising species and different sites of natural beauty around the world.
Big brother Robbie (30) is the eldest of the trio. He was the proverbial canary in the cage, sent down to test the gloomy mines of adulthood before the other two. Now he works as an artist in Berlin, as well as being Editor-in-chief of BOXROX. Some of his swim-inspired VARC paintings were also recently shown during a solo exhibition at the Kendal Arts Centre.