THE STORY BEGAN around the time of Jack's graduation. A few years earlier, Robbie had swum the length of Lake Ullswater, in Cumbria, as part of a locally funded art project. Meanwhile, Calum was throwing himself into various extreme triathlons and practising endurance swimming as part of his training. As they both became increasingly more active they started to discuss the idea of doing something together - one big waterborne adventure. All the older brothers had to do was pry Jack out of his cosy Newcastle cocoon and the trio would be complete.
By the time Jack's graduation rolled around, the three of them were all on-board and the adventure was set in motion. After summer, the following year, they were going to embark on a nine-day/ninety-mile swim down the River Eden - a river that once flowed past the foot of their childhood home. It was going to be quite an undertaking, unlike anything they'd done before. So, over the course of the next year they trained in their respective pools: Robbie in Berlin, Calum in London and Jack in Newcastle. Gradually they tallied up more and more miles, whilst slowly learning to travel much faster and more smoothly through the water. Towards the end of that year they also began to hit the choppy open water, fully aware that the River Eden was going to be very different from chlorinated and heated indoor pools.
It was during those next few months of open water prep that each brother re-discovered the relaxing joy of swimming wild. Week after week they dove deeper into the sport, extending their distances and improving their techniques. Finally, they decided to travel up to Scotland and swim across the Corryvreckan (the third largest maelstrom in the world). Two weeks after that frothy, salty baptism they were scheduled to walk to the source of the Eden and begin their 90-mile downriver swim. This was the beginning of their aquatic adventures together - the first symbolic outing and the first big splash for the Wild Swimming Brothers.
Little did they know, the Hudson brothers were about to embark on a long family adventure together - one that would take them to far-flung islands, fearsome maelstroms and peaceful lochs, allowing them to raise money and awareness for important causes, whilst also spending time together in the natural world, doing something they'd always loved.
Now, the brothers have swum in the blackened waters of the Arctic Circle, weaving between the upturned tentacles of lion's mane jellyfish. They've crossed the three most powerful maelstroms in the world, led events, talks and written a book... they even met a big Clydesdale horse with a lovely moustache.
Here’s a list of their expeditions so far:
Of course, none of this would've been possible if it wasn't for the ongoing support of the wetsuit-clad WSB following. The brothers love you all and your support means the world to them. They couldn't keep launching these expeditions without you - they'd probably try, but they wouldn't get very far.
The boys also want to say a big thank you to some of their mighty kit and corporate sponsors, as well as a few charities they've worked in partnership with throughout the years: