In 1994, a scientific study in American “Outside” magazine classified the Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean among the six most challenging sports events in the world. This study based its conclusion on different factors, such as: the challenge, degree of difficulty of the course and psychological strength required by its participants.

Ranking of the evaluated sports events :

  1. Race Across America (RAAM)
  2. Vendée Globe
  3. Iditarod Sled Dog Race
  4. US Army’s Best Ranger
  5. Raid Gauloise
  6. Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean (Roberval, Canada)
  7. Badwater 146
  8. Ironman Hawaii

In 1999, the members of the “Presse sportive régionale” in Saguenay–Lac-St-Jean chose the Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean as the most remarkable sporting event of the 20th century.

In 2001, the Government of Quebec, through the Société des évènements majeurs internationaux du Québec (SÉMIQ), granted the Traversée internationale event status as it had done in the case of the Quebec Carnival, Jazz Festival and Montreal International Fireworks Competition.

At the Grands Prix du Tourisme Québécois in 2002, the 47th Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean won the National Silver Laureate in the Tourist Event category (with a budget of less than $1,000,000).

In 2004, at the Saguenay–Lac-St-Jean Edition of the Grands Prix du Tourisme Québécois gala, the 49th Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean, with a budget of $500,000 or more, was voted Tourist Event of the Year.

In 2005, at the Grands Prix du Tourisme Québécois gala, the 50th Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean won the National Bronze Laureate in the Festival and Tourist Event category (with an operating budget of $500,000 or more).

En 2009, la 56e Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean remporte le Prix « COUP D’ÉCLAT »  dans la catégorie « Stratégie promotionnelle des actions durables » pour la présentation de son Souper dans les rues Loto-Québec SANS STYROMOUSSE.

En 2010, les Championnats du monde FINA (organisés par la Traversée) remportent les titres suivants :

  • Événement international de l’année – Gala Sport Québec
  • Événement international de l’année – Gala du mérite sportif du Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean

En 2012, la Traversée remporte le « VIVAT de l’engagement socio-économique », lors du premier gala des prix VIVATS organisé par le Conseil québécois des événements écoresponsables.

En 2015, la Traversée remporte le prestigieux « GRAND VIVAT » (couvrant tous les volets du développement durable) dans la catégorie « Budget de plus de 500 000$ ».

La Traversée : what has been said about it…

“If you want to be the best swimmer in the world, you have to win the lake St-Jean competition.”
Stéphane Lecat
Swimmer from France – Champion in 1996, 1999, 2000 – title holder of the 32 km record

“When I am on the starting line, not knowing whether I’ll finish or not; when I must push myself relentlessly through this immense body of water, sometimes wondering if I’m going forwards or backwards; and, I finally touch the finish line… it feels like I’ve been climbing Mount Everest horizontally.”
Robert Lachance
Canadian swimmer – Champion in 1982

“La Traversée du lac St-Jean is the Wimbledon of swimming.”

Mohamed Marouf
Egyptian swimmer now living in Canada, trainer of the Calac Swimming Club (Lasalle, Québec) – participant in 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2000 and 2001.

“In all ways, this is the best organised long distance competition I have ever seen. The organisation is excellent. La Traversée is a world class event. It combines a warm welcome, great organisation, safety, and above all, lots of fun.”
Gunnar Warner

“La Traversée is a masterpiece that may figure beside the great works of mankind because, in continuing to cement fraternity and friendship among people, it attains the realm of immortality.”
Johnny Weissmuller
American actor who starred in the film “Tarzan” – guest of honour at the 1962 Traversée