Marc Ankenbauer's 10+ year quest to jump in every named lake in Glacier and Waterton National Parks for charity.
168 lakes. Only 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
-- Marc jumped into Fisher Cap Lake on Sunday September 8th, 2013 to complete his goal! --
Read about Marc and how this project started...

Old Man Lake – With a National Geographic Film Crew – #117

Folks, don’t try this at home...or in Glacier!
Big News !!So, in the future when you hear about some knucklehead roaming around in the middle of the mountains trying to jump in every named lake in Waterton and Glacier National Parks……..It very well may be while watching a documentary about Glacier on the National Geographic Channel.
A very nice guy I know that holds a pretty high position in Glacier was contacted by National Geographic because they were doing a documentary entitled “Wild Spaces – Glacier National Park”. It is an installment of a series about the wildest National Parks in the country.
They were hoping to find a good human interest story about the park and he passed my story on to them.

They then contacted me and we worked out the specifics.

Actually it was funny, I checked my email one day and this was the subject title.

FW: National Geographic – Man who jumps in lakes.

I stopped for a moment and thought…Wait, that’s me…..

I was absolutely floored when I read the email. As you can obviously imagine.

They wanted to make sure they were doing a lake that I had never done before and capture the whole process on film.

That is not that easy to accomplish these days, as most of the lakes that I have not been to are getting to be extremely removed and inaccessible.

Luckily, for the last few years while I was making major strides in the project there has been a lot of grizzly activity at a lake called Old Man Lake. The campground at the lake has been closed for the last couple years, so I have been essentially ignoring it.

We really lucked out. There is nothing as beautiful and simultaneously still on a trail as Old Man Lake.

So, I drove to East Glacier on Wednesday and met Brian and Chad at the Two Medicine Grill for breakfast. Brian was the producer and Chad was his assistant.
We got to know each other a bit and off we went.

Perfect day for a swim. It was warm, blue skies, and not too much wind. Just enough to keep the bugs from being real bad.

They would stop me at a section and set up their video camera. Then they would have me walk across a foot bridge and then pan out to all of the mountains as I walked into the far distance.

The hardest part was a bit when we hit flat trail and the producer wanted to ask me some questions while we walked backwards. He was walked slowly backwards and would ask me interview questions with the camera in my face.
He would like what I had to say, but I would say “um” or walk off screen in the wrong direction, or look at the camera instead of him.

He would then have me say it again.

But the problem is that I don’t know what I said. I would then start to preface what I said earlier.
I realized that restating something with the same enthusiasm and as genuinely, over and over again is very tough. I give credit to actors.
I can’t recreate and plan spontaneity. It goes against the main tenants of the word spontaneity. Odd.

We got it though. When it comes out on video, hopefully you won’t even notice a difference. I did though.

We got to the lake and shot an interview and the actual swimming portion after lunch.

Actually, I did not eat lunch till after the shoot. I felt like if there was ever a moment in time that Marc Ankenbauer did not need to have a big lunch it was right before he took his shirt off for a documentary for National Geographic.

I was all fine with all of this. I mean it was a great honor and a once in a lifetime experience.
But, come on. Any of you out there that would like to be the big, bald, kinda frumpy bald guy with a farmers tan that was filmed for an hour with no shirt getting in and out of a mountain lake in broad day light.
I imagine if everything goes right and I make the editing process; you may very well be watching the sun bounce off of my white Montana farmers tan chest for many years to come in syndication while sitting around on a lazy Sunday afternoon watching TV on the couch.


It is what it is and I am very lucky to have gotten this much exposure. (Literally and figuratively) Ha-ha..

I was able to explain that I was raising money and awareness for childrens cancer. I’ll do most anything for that kind of help.

Anyway, back to the scene. All went wonderfully!!. They really went all out. They even submerged themselves with an underwater camera and had me swim over them and swim at them. Crazy. I still can’t believe that this happened. Know?

I mean they had me in a 40 something degree lake for about an hour off and on. Getting out, getting back in. Getting back out again. Swimming back and forth and back again.

Camera’s are funny things I’ll tell you..

I was told that this will not even air on National Geographic Television until about November of next year. We have plenty of time to wait.

Anyway, that is my story. Old Man Lake was number 117 in all. I have 51 left and it is high season for busting out some more.

I hope the summer is treating everyone very well.
Get out there and enjoy it. You will have your winter coat on before you know it.

To Life,