2016 Results

Thank you for a fantastic day of swimming! Despite the cooler weather and choppy conditions there were lots of reasons to celebrate as over 250 of you completed the race.  

Thank you for your patience as a timing error in some of the waves added a few minutes to your time, the below link is the corrected results.  If you have questions please don’t hesitate to email us.


Heat Sheets and other Info

Ok Fat Salmoners!  This post contains everything you’ll need to know for Saturday. We know you are excited to get out and swim, we can’t wait to bring you the 17th annual Fat Salmon Swim!  Here are the details:

  • Schedule
  • Check In & Waves
  • Parking
  • Category Changes
  • Stragglers & Time Limit
  • Trouble on the Course
  • Equipment
  • Refunds
  • Day of Race Registration (new this year!)
  • Questions?

1. SCHEDULE: Please be on time.  Seriously.

6:15 a.m. — Check in opens
7:15 a.m. — Check in closes
7:20 a.m. — Mandatory Safety Meeting 
7:35 a.m. — (approx) leave Madison Park and CARPOOL to the start
8:15 a.m. — 1st wave starts! Waves 2-5 will follow with only 3 minutes between each.

10:30 a.m.-   Awards!

View the Heat Sheet (first part sorted by first name, second part sorted by wave) and make a note of your wave number (you can also see the wetsuit and non-wetsuit category for which are currently registered). You’ll need to check in at the corresponding table wave number.   First Timers: You will receive a plastic bag to put your towel and your clothes you wear to the start line.  We will transport that bag to the finish line for you.  As for rides to the start, everyone helps each other out by sharing rides and offering available seats in their cars.

2. CHECK IN: You absolutely MUST be checked in to swim!  Check-in at Madison Park (which is also the finish line), get numbered, put on your chip, AND stay for the pre-race meeting in order to swim. 

3. PARKING: Please, please absolutely NO parking allowed along Madison Street or the directly adjoining streets. The businesses need those spaces for their patrons. Respect all barricades, posted signs, driveways, etc. Please try to be quiet as you come and go from your cars.

4. CATEGORY CHANGES: If you would like to switch divisions (wetsuit or nonwetsuit) you need to FIRST check in with your original division, THEN GO TO THE CHANGE TABLE where you will have a new chip and number assigned.

5. STRAGGLERS & TIME LIMIT: Maintaining everyone’s safety is key for us so we need to keep you bunched together.  Stragglers may be pulled and those who are not on track to finish the race in 2 hours will be pulled at the 2.5-mile marker. If we need to pull you, please don’t argue.  Anyone behind the cutoff jeopardizes the safety of the event and limits our ability to bring this event to you again next year.

6. TROUBLE ON THE COURSE: We certainly hope you won’t have any, but just in case…UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD ANYONE SWIM TO THE SHORE AND GO HOME.

If you can’t finish, please flag a guard or kayak to be pulled onto a motor boat.  If you head for shore we’ll have no idea that you’ve left and will see yourself on the evening news as missing.  Also, I’ll have a heart attack, you don’t want that on your conscience.  A lifeguard or boat will be closer to you than the shore. 

7. EQUIPMENT: This may seem obvious, but just in case: make a checklist or pack your bag ahead of time so you don’t forget anything. Swimsuit, goggles, wetsuit (if applicable), body-glide, towel, warm clothes for before and after (even if the weather is warm, being in the water for a while will lower your body temp), water bottle, etc. Hydrate before you swim! Eat if you need to eat. Anything else? Put it on your list, you might not be quite awake when it’s time to go on Saturday. 

USMS rules govern this race — the following equipment is NOT ALLOWED: fins, pull buoy, paddles, snorkel, floating buoy, ipod, etc. 

8. REFUNDS: When you registered, you agreed that your entry fee was non-refundable, non-deferrable and non-transferable. If you opt not to swim for any reason, we hope you’ll still come and pick up your shirt and cap and stay to cheer your friends into the finish. Absolutely no bandits swimming in your place.  If we find out we’ll make sure you’re not invited to return next year and recommend that you are blocked from other PNA races too.

9. DAY OF RACE REGISTRATION – We have space to offer for day of race registrations if you know someone who wants to swim the Fat Salmon but missed the registration deadline.  They must arrive by 6:30am.

10. QUESTIONS? If you have any, check the FAQ’s on our website or the Club Assistant Page. If you don’t see the answer there, please be sure to ask at the pre-race meeting, so that others can benefit from your question and our answers. 

Thanks for your attention.  We’re so happy to bring you this great race!  May the 17th annual Fat Salmon be the best one yet!  See you out there.


Race Director

Online Registration Closes Tuesday

Online registration closes at midnight on Tuesday July 12th but for the first time this year we will be offering on-site registration for the remaining slots.  If you plan to register on-site, please arrive by 645am with the following info:

-Valid ID 
-Visa/Mastercard/check/cash to cover registration cost of $85 plus $22 USMS One Event entry if applicable. 
-USMS membership card (you can find yours online athttps://www.usms.org/reg/getcard.php)
-Estimated finish time
-Wetsuit or nonwetsuit division

Any questions please email race director Meg atracedirector@fatsalmonswim.com

Race Day Information

1. THANK YOU: First, lets thank our amazing sponsors; you can find them on our website at www.fatsalmonswim.com.  Please visit these vendors, businesses and organizations that make this event possible.  Here’s a word from our largest sponsor, blueseventy:

Blueseventy’s award winning wetsuits, swimwear, goggles and accessories are constructed and tested to help you feel like you could swim forever. One swim and you’ll understand why some of the world’s leading triathletes and swimmers consider blueseventy the only brand of choice. Fat Salmon swimmers can save 15% at blueseventy.com by using coupon code FatSalmon16.

Without sponsors, the Fat Salmon wouldn’t be possible.  The race organizing committee is eternally grateful to all of these fine folks for making this event an annual success.

2. DIVISION CHANGES: If you know you’d like to change from wetsuit to non-wetsuit or vice versa at this point, please contact us atregistration@fatsalmonswim.com   ASAP to let us know.  We will accept these via email until July 12th; after that you can change on race day but save us the hassle and do it now if you know you want to.  If you forget and wait until race morning, you’ll be doing a 2-part check-in—check in with your wave followed by a stop at the change table to change your division.

3. TIME LIMIT: For the safety of everyone involved, you MUST FINISH IN UNDER 2 HOURS; If you are not on course to finish in under two hours you will be pulled from the water by kayak or boat.  Please do not argue, this decision will be made by the race director, safety director and kayak/guard/boat crew to make sure that everyone’s safety is protected.

4. REFUNDS + SUBSTITUTIONS: When you registered, you agreed to a non-refundable, non-transferable, non-deferrable entry to this year’s race.  We’re so sorry if you are unable to swim for any reason but there are no refunds or subs.  Please consider coming to volunteer if you can’t swim; your cap and tshirt await you there.

5. BOATS and KAYAKS: we can always use help from boaters and kayakers on race day–and you can get your money back!  The cost of your registration (not USMS one-event fees) will be refunded to any individual swimmer who provides a single motor boat plus operator, or a pair of kayakers plus paddlers.  

Email boats@fatsalmonswim.com  or kayaks@fatsalmonswim.com to let us know you want to help.

2016 Registration Opens May 1

Hello Fat Salmoners! Are you getting ready for another year of fantastic northwest open water swimming?

We are! The 2016 Fat Salmon is taking place on Saturday, July 16th. Registration for the 2016 race is scheduled to go live on Sunday, May 1st at 6am. It will be another great year of Fat Salmon swimming!

Click here to register.


2016 Registration and Race Information

Big news for all anadromous swimmers!

Race day for the 2016 Fat Salmon Swim is July 16, 2016. So mark it on your calendar and invite all your friends! It will be awesome.

Registration for the biggest fattest salmon swim ever starts Sunday May 1, 2016 – so you may want to call in “sick” on Monday to recover from your registration party hangover.

2015 Results

3.2mi No Wetsuit Swim
3.2mi Wetsuit Swim

Another Big Thank You

Wild Salmon Seafood Market


Thank you Wild Salmon Seafood Market for donating Salmon for year’s Fat Salmon swim! We appreciate the support of local businesses and we want you to support them!  Check them out!  Copper River Salmon is available at Wild Salmon Seafood Market – limited availability so you’d better act fast!

Big Thank You

purefoodfishThank you Pure Food Fish Market for donating the salmon for the Fat Salmon this year!

Anyone who’s visited Pike Place Public Market to buy fresh seafood knows that Pure Food Fish Market, Seattle’s most popular seafood retailer, is the place to go!  Thanks for being awesome!


Race Day Information

When: Saturday, July 18, 2015


  • 6:15 – 7:15 AM: Check-in
  • 7:20 AM: Pre-Race Meeting – MANDATORY for all swimmers
  • 7:35 AM: Carpool to 3.2-mile start (at Day Street Boat Ramp)


  • 8:15 AM: Start 1st wave

SAFETY: Large buoys (approx. every 1/2 mile) will mark the course. Motor boats, kayaks and lifeguards will be located along the perimeter of the course. Swimmers must wear the swim caps provided at check-in. A MANDATORY safety meeting will be held before the event start. Friends and family who are not registered for this event cannot swim along with you. Lake temperature can vary: be prepared for cold water.

MORE ABOUT SAFETY & PULLING SWIMMERS: We must maintain a certain swimmer-to-boat ratio to keep our permit AND, more importantly, to keep everyone safe. Swimmers that fall too far behind the pack will be pulled. Additionally, if you are not on target to finish the 3.2 mile event in 2 hours or less, you will be pulled.

RULES: Current USMS rules will govern this event.

  • The use of neoprene wet suits or other nonporous attire IS allowed.
  • Fins, pull buoys, snorkels, MP3 players are NOT allowed.
  • Any questions, refer to USMS guidelines.


  • There will be NO day-of-race registration and NO filling of no-show slots.
  • There will be NO refunds or exchange of entries.
  • Someone else cannot swim for you – this jeopardizes our insurance.
  • There will be NO SWIMMING if you have not checked in ON TIME and attended the pre-race safety meeting.
  • If you lose your timing chip, you MUST tell a race official that you got out of the water or we may think that you drowned and call search & rescue. Don’t make us do that.

LOCATION: The event runs between the I-90 and 520 floating bridges along Seattle’s Lake Washington waterfront. The 3.2 Mile Race starts at Day Street Boat Ramp at the west end of the I-90 Bridge span, and ends at Madison Park in Seattle (E. Madison St. & E. Howe St). Pre-race check-in is at Madison Park where the race ends. Swimmers are responsible for transportation from the registration area to the race starts. Parking at the start area is extremely limited; carpooling is encouraged. See RACE MAP.

AWARDS: A whole salmon will be awarded to the fastest male and female swimmers in both the wetsuit and non-wetsuit divisions of the 3.2-Mile Race. Ribbons will be available for the top three finishers in all 5-yr age groups, in both divisions.


  • Swimmers must be 18 years of age as of July 18, 2015 and:
  • Currently registered with USMS or FINA or Canadian Masters, or…
  • Pay an additional $20 “One-Event USMS Registration” fee.

Online Entry ONLY:

$65.00 – Early entry in May
$75.00 – June 1 thru June 30
$85.00 – July 1 thru July 12
$20.00 – “One-Event” USMS registration (as needed, see eligibility)
Online Entries are paid by credit card to “ClubAssistant.com Events.”

WANT TO SWIM FOR FREE?: We are offering a free registration in the form of a refund AFTER THE EVENT if you provide two kayak volunteers (each with their own kayaks) OR one motorboat or jetski adult volunteer with their one motorcraft on the day of the event.  This refund is only for the Fat  Salmon entry fee (excludes one-event USMS registration fee if applicable).  When your boating volunteers register to help (see link below), have them indicate they are volunteering on your behalf.

REGISTRATION CLOSES on July 12th at 11:59 pm PDT or sooner if full to capacity.
A note about that USMS “One-Event” Fee… Your $20 lets you participate in this USMS-sanctioned event. For $30 more, enjoy a full-year USMS membership including access to pool meets, clinics, coaches, open water swims and magazine subscription. Contact PNARegistrar@usms.org for more info or to join.

IMPORTANT LINKS: Facebook, FS FAQs, Time Guidelines & Safety Info

Kayakers, Motor Boats, & Jet Skis are needed! Please contact us.

If you have questions about your registration, contact Jim Lasersohn, Fat Salmon Registration Coordinator via email atregistration@fatsalmonswim.com

Still have questions? Contact Meghan Meinerz, Race Director
via email: racedirector@fatsalmonswim.com