Important changes to the 2023/2024 swim season

Major construction of the long-awaited New Bridgewater Bridge is underway.

The $786 million project is jointly funded, with the Australian Government committing $628.8 million and the Tasmanian Government providing the remaining $157.2 million.

Six barges are now in place and will be linked to a temporary steel-framed bridge built from the Bridgewater foreshore across the Derwent, from which the new bridge will be constructed.

To facilitate the construction of the new Bridgewater Bridge on the lower part of the Derwent River the Derwent River Big Swim has been advised by the Department of State Growth Tasmania that the passage under the existing Bridgewater Bridge and the new temporary Bridge currently being installed will be closed to all marine traffic including swimmers for this up-and-coming 2023/2024 season.

We have been in consultation with the Department of State growth this year regarding getting an exemption to allow swimmers to swim under the new temporary Bridgewater Bridge. The department of State Growth Tasmania has now come to the decision that it will be unsafe for swimmers to move through the area under the existing and temporary Bridgewater bridge whilst work is underway on construction of the new Bridgewater Bridge.

Obviously, this is out of our control and is a very disappointing outcome for the DRBS crew and for swimmers who may already have made plans to travel to Tasmania to complete the marathon 34km Derwent River Big Swim. A lot of time and effort has been dedicated by the DRBS crew each year to make this a great swim.
What does this mean to swimmers?

There will be no bookings allocated for the current up and coming 2023/2024 season.

If you have already booked your swim for the 2023/2024 season, please contact your pilot who you booked your swim with.

We will have a better idea of the 2024/2025 season after consulting with the Department of State Growth.

Once the Department of State Growth Tasmania has advised the Derwent River Big Swim of when they have declared it safe for swimmers to move through the new Bridge, we will let you know.

We apologise for any inconveniences created to swimmers, but we will endeavour to get this fantastic swim up and running once we get the approval from the Tasmanian Department of State Growth Tasmania.

The planned Cliff to Bridge swim is still scheduled to go ahead on 3 February 2024, as it will finish upstream of the Bridgewater Bridge. For more information on this swim, plus other great places to get wet on the Derwent River and around Tasmania go to: