Not your bog standard day at the snorkelling mud-fest

By Noel McAdam

AS if the weather wasn't bad enough, around 30 hardy souls flung themselves into a country bog.

Some of the competitors also came dressed as Spider-man, Iron Man and even surgeons - although they were in no fit state for delicate medical examinations afterwards.

Peatlands Park near Dungannon in Co Armagh staged the annual Bog Snorkelling Championships which is very far from 'bog' standard.

The event at the 680-acre park has now reached its 10th year.

Two visitors had travelled all the way from north Carolina in the US, where the 40-degree heat doesn't do much for mucking about in the mud.

Competitors have to swim up to two lengths of a 60-yard (55m) bog drain with the aid - as the title suggests - of a snorkel.


They are also given masks and flippers as aids - but are not allowed to employ conventional swimming strokes.

"The atmosphere was fantastic. It was just mental," said organiser Colin Gates. "The crowds were not as big as other years but the weather probably had something to do with that.