A Frenchman by the name of Jarossay Nicolas has set quite a goal for himself. In January, he intends to launch a specially built stand-up paddle board from the African Coast on which he will attempt to become the first person to SUP across the Atlantic Ocean. He expect to spend 75 days at sea as he paddles towards the Americas, covering approximately 4000 km (2500 miles) of open water.
The key to his survival on the Atlantic Ocean is the 21-foot long, custom built SUP board. Large and ponderous looking, it has never the less been built to help him survive for two-and-a-half months at sea. It features a host of high tech gadgets to help with the crossing, including GPS navigation, emergency beacons, radios, and a water purification system that is capable of producing 3.5 liters of fresh water per hour. The board also includes a 7-foot long storage compartment that will be packed with freeze dried food for Nicolas’ meals, and an emergency suit in case he experiences bad weather along the way. It is even large enough for the man himself to squeeze inside in dangerous situations.
It appears that the Frenchman will be paddling alone and without a safety boat on this voyage. He will be in daily contact via satellite phone with a friend back home, but will not have the luxury of a boat following along to help avert disaster. Should he run into problems, he could be days away from anyone who could assist him. Tropical storms are less common during the time of year that he’ll be crossing the ocean, but they can happen, and this tiny craft would have a difficult time surviving such an onslaught.
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