posted by Joe Anaya on August 12th, 2013

I know an adventurer. His name is Erden Eruc. And as a guy, if you can’t be an adventurer, the next best thing is to be friends with an adventurer. There aren’t many adventurers left in the world, so to know one is pretty cool.

Erden holds the record for most days in a solo ocean voyage. He spent 312 days on the Pacific Ocean in a rowboat with only a satellite phone and the occasional sea bird to keep him company. He wasn’t ship wrecked; he did this purposefully.

Erden was driven by a vision of completing a man-powered circumnavigation of the globe. That means he went all the way around the world using his muscles. He hiked, climbed, pedaled a bike and rowed a boat to go 41,000 miles in a big circle.

The short-hand version is that he left Bodega Bay, CA in his rowboat. Spent almost a year working his way down to Australia. Then he rode his bike across Australia; rowed his boat through the Indian Ocean to Madagascar; pedaled to the other side of Africa (Climbed Kilamanjaro while he was passing by.). Then got back in the rowboat and went across the Atlantic to Florida and rode his bike back to Bodega Bay, CA. He also holds the Guinness record as the first person to solo circumnavigate the globe under human power.

The day he was scheduled to connect his bike trip across America to the dock where he shoved off for sea, we waited with banners and champagne. We waited; it was taking more time to get up a long incline. We waited; he got a flat tire. We waited. As I was getting bored, hungry and cold, I realized, “I am not cut out for that kind of adventure.” After only a few hours delay, I wanted to go back to the hotel and order room service. What was his mental state after the first 1,000 miles or 10 months at sea or 3 years into the five-year journey?

Along the way, he battled a school of flying fish. One night, mysteriously his emergency beacon went off, sending his land locked support team into a tizzy. (He was fine.) Along the coast of pirate-riddled Somalia, he received a military escort from the Turkish navy. And met many generous friends of friends and even strangers who were more than willing to lend a hand when needed.

It’s great to hang out and hear the stories, a lot of them are about rowing, 2/3 of the world is covered in water. If you want to find out more about this amazing adventurer, here’s a link to his website. His organization has raised almost $100,000 for educational projects. They are also trying to crowd-fund a documentary about his adventures. If you want to help fund that, you can go to this Kickstarter link. I don’t have any connection to the project other than as a friend who likes to tell people, “I know an adventurer.”



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