Earn the Coveted Black Cap

ʻAu I Nā Mokupuni ʻEkolu Maui Nui Swim is a group event- invited swimmers swim tandem-solos across each channel with a single time recorded for each crossing. The event committee aims to select swimmers of comparable ability and speed. There is one escort boat and swimmers must stay together. This 3-day 3-channel swim is for experienced swimmers only. Those that apply and are accepted into the event must continue to furnish swimming benchmarks including distances and times to the event committee leading up to the event. Ocean conditions vary greatly and swimmers must expect to swim more than the linear distances recorded for each channel. In 2019, for example, swimmers swam over 36 miles (57.6 km) during the 3-day event due to strong currents. The event has been run 6 times with 33 entrants to date and 29 completions.

Channel crossings are officially certified by the Hawaii Channel Association and can be found on the web at: http://www.hawaiiswim.org/hawaiianChannel/Endurance_Challenge.html

The Association’s rules must be strictly followed and are available at:


ʻAu I Nā Mokupuni ʻEkolu is part of the Triple Crown of Stage Swims


The Triple Crown of Stage Swims includes the 8 Bridges Hudson River Swim in New York (https://www.nyopenwater.org/8-bridges-hudson-river-swim/) and the SCAR Swim (http://www.scarswim.com/) in Arizona.


$1000-$1600. The final cost of the event entry fee is determined once the total pool of swimmers has been determined. All other costs are at the swimmers expense: These costs may include, but are not limited to, the costs of travel, hotel, food, feeds, medical care, and gear. Certification of each swimmer’s successful channel crossing(s) comes at no additional cost.


For swimmers wanting to swim all 3 channels continuously please contact us for course advice, guidance, and more. Suggested directions for the swim: Lanai to Maui, Maui to Molokai, Molokai to Lanai.


Swimming the 3 channels was one of the highlights of my life. When Steve invited me to join him I didn't know if I could do it but when presented with a wonderful opportunity such as this I said, "yes" and just figured it out later! It was definitely a challenging swim as Mother Nature threw us some wind, waves and strong currents. We managed to muscle our way through it all and just grind it out. I felt very safe as I was under Steve’s (and the crew’s) watchful eye. Swimming from island to island each day and ultimately completing the third and final day is a memory that I will ever forget. Thank you again for the opportunity to make and be a part of this amazing experience.

-Paul T.






by Sage Stephens @storyofsage


Steven Minaglia created ʻAu I Nā Mokupuni ʻEkolu Maui Nui Swim in 2017 and has completed the event 5 times.