Solo Sailing Update: Laura Crosses Indian Ocean

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Teenage solo sailor Laura Dekker completed her crossing of the Indian Ocean last week, safely arriving in Durban, South Africa. This marks the end of the third leg or her solo circumnavigation attempt, which began in August of last year.

Laura remained mostly silent about her route across the Indian Ocean in an attempt to avoid becoming a target for pirates, but reaching South Africa is another significant milestone on her journey. According to her most recent blog update, she is currently in Port Elizabeth, and will soon be sailing around the Cape of Good Hope, which should be the last of the major challenges before she turns for home. That last stretch run will have her sailing up the western coast of Africa and returning to Gibraltar where she began.

The 16-year old has now crossed the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Ocean, and seems to be a lock for finishing her voyage safely, and thereby claiming the title as the youngest person to sail solo around the world. Laura made headlines when she announced her intentions to do just that at the age of 13, but bureaucratic ย red tape kept her on dry land until she was finally able to set sail last year at the age of 14. Since then, she has been casually making her way around the planet, and seemingly having a great time doing it.

There is no word when sheโ€™ll set sail again, but reading her journal entries online, Laura seems eager to get going. If the weather works in her favor, I imagine sheโ€™ll brave the Cape soon enough and start final stage for home.

Kraig Becker