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The longest non-stop open water marathon in France!



Saving the most important resource on earth is the message our 2024 godfather keeps putting forward since its first sport adventure at the age of 26 in Australia

Since, the french explorer Rémi Camus swam over 2500km around the french coast in 2018 between Dunkerque and Monaco to make people aware about the issues we all face when its comes to water access.

We are so proud to welcome Rémi in Cognac on 1 june 2024 !

He'll discover our Charente river escorted by many children from the region who'll help him to tow his life platform used in june 2023 to swim from Calvi to Monaco during an epic 180km journey !

We look forward to discovering an amazing adventurer who spends his energy to protect the environment and educate people on how to protect it.


Designed for experienced swimmers who wish to be part of an adventure that is long distance open water swimming.

33km downstream
solo or relay
a breathtaking route

Take up the challenge 33 kms solo or relay!

Take up the challenge 33 kms solo or relay!

Take up the challenge 33 kms solo or relay!

Take up the challenge 33 kms solo or relay!

Take up the challenge 33 kms solo or relay!

Get ready for 16 kms SOLO!

Get ready for 16 kms SOLO!

Get ready for 16 kms SOLO!

Get ready for 16 kms SOLO!

Get ready for 16 kms SOLO!

The Petit Gabarrier

The 1km swim is back ! from 12 to 99 years old, it's your chance to experiment something new, out of the pool !Your very first open water challenge ? 500 meters downstream to warm up and back to the finish line. Lots of fun !

A 16km event for experienced solo swimmers who want to try out a unique race distance. Many spectators expected on the old towpaths from Jarnac!
A 3km event aimed at all types of swimmers, including open water beginners, who want to accomplish a personal challenge in a new swimming environment. 1500 metres down and 1500 metres back up, just enough to have you coming back for more!


Our association "Le Flow Des Gabarriers"gather a small number of open water fanatics locals who swim in our beautiful river all year round. We are proud to work to offer you an immersive taste of our region. French rivers attract more and more swimmers every year, be one of them in the Charente !

Already 2 editions which attracted over 250 swimmers altogether, from 33 kms to 1 km. We offer 4 races this year, don't delay and be part of the fun !

The association "Le Flow des Gabarriers" and its volunteers are available to help you undertake a unique personal challenge and answer all your questions!


Start of the 33km Flow Des Gabarriers solo
Le Bain Des Dames in Châteauneuf-sur-Charente
Start of the 33km Flow Des Gabarriers relay
Le Bain Des Dames in Châteauneuf-sur-Charente
Start of the 16km Gabarrier Apprentice
Opening of the Finishers’ Village
Solençon square in Cognac
Start of the 1km The Petit Gabarrier
Solençon square in Cognac
Start of the 3km Flow Challenge
Solençon square in Cognac
Solençon square in Cognac
Solençon square in Cognac

Listen to the experience of Arthur Germain, our 2022 godfather, in full immersion (in French)

Frequently Asked Questions

I don't have a kayakist, what can I do?

Each participant in the 33 km and 16 km swims is responsible for their own logistics team, including the accompanying kayaker. Your kayaker is one of the key components of your organization, and it can be challenging to find someone locally.
The event's Facebook page is one of the ways to find a volunteer to accompany you during your Charente swim. Don't leave this search to the last minute!

Will I get seasick?

It is very unlikely! Small waves may be generated by boats crossing, the wind can also create a slight chop.

Is a neoprene wetsuit compulsory?

No, wetsuits are not compulsory but recommended, to prevent the risk of hypothermia during the marathon races.

How fast is the current in the Charente, is there a risk of being swept away?

The current in the Charente is weak, the only areas where the current increases slightly are in sections that do not form part of the race, or where access is prohibited.

What are the categories and prizes?

The Flow Des Gabarriers is an aquatic adventure that will recognise the fastest swimmers during a prize-giving ceremony at 5.30 pm. There are different categories (scratch ranking, wetsuit/no wetsuit, men/women etc.) and exciting prizes offered by our partners.

What is the time limit for the 3km?

The event ends at 6pm, so every participant must be out of the water by then. In 2022, all swimmers finished in less than 1h30.


What is the average water temperature in June in the Charente?

This can vary greatly from year to year. However, we can expect a minimum of 17/18 degrees Celsius and a maximum of 23/24 degrees Celsius.


Where are the start and finish lines located?

The starting line of the 3km is located under the Maurice Hennessy quay in front of Place du Solençon, to get there you have to swim across the Charente! The finish line is located at the Cognac Canoe Club pontoons.


Can I register if I don’t have a FFN or FFTRI licence?

Yes, but a medical certificate of fitness dated less than 1 year before the event will be required.


Do the FINA/FFN rules governing open water apply?

No, only the rules set out in the "Flow des Gabarriers" internal regulations apply.


Where can I stay during the event?

The Cheval Blanc, the Valois and the'IBIS centre ville are the 3 FDG official hotels in Cognac. Get together and enjoy a special discount offered for participants and support teams. To book, simply get in touch with the desired hotel, there are plenty of options from twin, double or quad bedrooms !