Friday, June 17, 2011

The Ultimate Crossing intro

The plan is to Stand up paddle from the Big Island to Kauai, about 300 miles and a little less then 500 KM. I will be using my STARBOARD Open Ocean 14'0" x 28". This crossing will be solo, non stop and unsupported. This means eating, sleeping, living and most of all paddling on the board for approximately 5 days and nights. Right now the planned start is coming Wednesday.

Now, I had quite a few people, among which Svein Rasmussen, my wife Dagmar, my mom, and a couple of other very good friends, asking me the same thing; why on earth do you want to do that?

The answer is simple.I think, sometimes it is good to do something difficult and hard in order to appreciate life, people, food and all the things around you we often take for granted. And I love to challenge myself and I love the adventure, being very close to the ocean for 5 days is an experience everybody should have once in their life. Maybe not necessarily on a 14 foot SUP this way though.
And, it is in the Hawaiian culture. Hawaiians have been using their outrigger canoes since thousand of years to reach all corners of the pacific. They used simple canoes and the sun and the stars for navigation, amazing the distance they travelled. To really understand, you have to experience yourself.

The planned route along the North ( windward ) side of all the islands. 2 years ago I paddled around Maui. A beautiful trip where I saw, everything Maui has to offer, the great sights of the coast and Haleakala, whales, sharks, dolphins and so much more. After that I knew, I wanted to do another trip like that.

This time I came up with the idea when I was going to paddle in Zambia, last November, with Connor Baxter and Margareta Engstrom. So after coming back from Africa I started preparing. Looking at the route, buying safety gear, thinking about which board and planning when would be a good time. Because of the necessary trade winds and my racing schedule, June looked like a good month.

One of the training sessions with gear and water on board.

The next post I will explain a little more about the gear I am taking.

Aloha, Bart

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