Cold Water Immersion Videos

Mostly featuring Dr Grodon Giesbrecht

The following is a list of about 40 videos that address a wide range of aspects of exposure to cold water.   Many of them were produced by Ted Rankine.   They often cover the same subjects in different ways to reinforce key points and interconnect the different subjects. Some are long versions of some of shorter videos.  For a quick overview, I recommend these six:

  1. 1-10-1 What really happens when you are immersed in cold water.
  2. Incapacitation: Treading water until you  can't  A compelling look at how miserable and relentlessly fatal being in cold water is.
  3. Getting that Sinking Feeling -Snowmobiling off an ice edge at 60+ mph.  This video (and two others) are also available on Dr Giesbrechts home page-near the bottom.
  4. Thermal Protection Test   clothing for cold water
  5. Rick and Dr Popsicle  Excellent (and funny) insight on how to get out of your car if it breaks through the ice. 
  6. Danger Thin Ice  A good general ice safety video produced by the Minnisota DNR around 1990.  It provides a timeless overview of basic ice safety.


The following list is divided the list into four sections:    

 Section 1) Videos from shows broadcasts by the Discovery Channel-Canada in 2002.  These are also available in high resolution form on Dr Giesbrecht's home page (near the bottom).  All of these are highly recommend.

  •  Cold Water Survival: Dr Giesbrecht skis into hole in the ice:  An excellent view of how falling through is likely to play out if you do not have ice claws or a friend with a throw rope.
  • Your Out, Now What?:  Dr Giesbrecht is a passenger on a snowmobile that breaks through the ice.  After getting back on the ice they spend a night in the woods in their wet clothes.
  • Getting that Sinking Feeling:  Dr Giesbrecht is a passenger on a snowmobile ride off an ice edge at 60 mph.  This viscerally  demonstrates how limited your ability to swim is in cold water and how beneficial having a flotation type snowmobile suit is.


Section 2) Cold Water Boot Camp

There are two sets of videos, one from  (the original, Canadian version) and  (the more recent US version) there are links to the these videos in non-YouTube file formats on each website. They are also available on two DVDs for $10 each: an excellent investment for a club or public presentation. The following are YouTube versions of these videos.  Most of them were posted on YouTube by the Water Safety Congress over during the summer of 2011.

 Section 3)  Beyond Cold Water Boot Camp  videos: again there are two versions, one in Celsius (Canadian) and one in Fahrenheit (US).  The topics are more oriented toward rescue personnel however all of them are well worth watching and a few are especially applicable to ice travelers.  Many of these videos can be found in the the original Canadian version as well (Beyond Cold Water Boot Camp). 

Section 4) This section covers additional videos posted by and others.