Ocean Rower Completes Pacific Crossing

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Russian explorer and ocean rower Fedor Konyukhov completed his attempt to row solo, and non-stop, across the Pacific Ocean this past weekend, reaching Australia on the shores of Mooloolaba Beach on Saturday. The journey took him 160 days to complete, and covered more than 16,800 km (10,439 miles) of open ocean.

Konyukhov initially set off on his voyage back on Dec. 14 of last year, but mechanical failures aboard his boat forced him to return to his starting point in Concon, Chile. It took him a few days to make repairs, but he was soon back out on the water, relaunching his journey on December 22. He would then spend roughly 10 hours per day working the oars, as he propelled his boat across the South Pacific, which he did without stopping on any islands for resupply or rest.

The Russian adventurer is certainly no stranger to adventures such as this one. He has climbed Everest twice, scaled the Seven Summits, and skied to both the North and South Pole. This journey may have been his most challenging however, as he was all alone on his tiny rowboat for weeks at a time, and often thousands of miles away from any kind of rescue.

Fedor is an Orthodox priest, and his faith always plays a role in his expeditions. He told reporters that he was able to complete his Pacific Row β€œonly with the help of God.” He also carried a wooden cross with him on the voyage, and asked to visit a local church not long after making landfall.

Konyukhov is just the second person to ever row across the South Pacific, and the first to do so non-stop from Chile. He is also the ninth person to cross the Pacific in a rowboat at all.

Congratulations to Fedor on completing this amazing journey. 160 days alone at sea is quite an accomplishment in its own right, covering more than 16,000 km in the process is even more impressive.

Kraig Becker