Anyone who is looking for more about our journey so far should check out the other crew members' blogs. They can be viewed here and here.
The following blog entry has been transcribed from a series of voicemails that Fiann recorded from the boat. The team's computer recently broke, making it too impractical to continue sending blog text by email. Instead, Fiann recorded the following message to be shared on his website:
These have been the toughest, most difficult days of the whole journey. We are down by two rowers, facing frequent storms and missing some important equipment.
But let me start from the beginning: Recently, we have crossed three major types of midpoints:
Number one is the distance-rowed midpoint. We actually passed this quite a few days ago.
Another is timeline midpoint, based on average speed, which we passed some days ago.
The third, we passed yesterday, which is midpoint in a straight line.
Now, I must explain why I am not writing so much:
It is because we are only four rowers rowing in an eight person boat. One person, Shane, got injured and had to be evacuated. One more is also always busy taking care of manual steering, because our steering broke. And if you're doing the math, we only began with 7 rowers to begin with… So that's four or even 3 of us pulling a boat built for eight all the way to Africa and keep in mind half of this number is rowing at once. However, despite the challenges, we are still doing really well- the fastest row for half of Indian Ocean ever.
Additionally, the computer also broke a few days ago, so I can't send emails for the blog. Even if I found time to write, it is impractical. It's too complicated… These recordings will be my only correspondence for some time.
There is a lot to write and I am sorry for not writing it. I'll do it when I get back to land and write all of the funny bits and pieces and other important details…
But, some highlights just for now… I broke four oars. Three of them in a storm, and the other in our evacuation action when Shane was injured. We were a few inches from the propellor of a tanker ship. It was the most dangerous moment of the journey so far. When we were trying to connect to the ship, the second oar was broken.
Also, we experienced a shark circling our boat once.
More, we have had to go completely through 3 storms and 2 hurricanes.
Some beautiful things mixed into these intense days:
We saw a moon-bow a few times. Like a rainbow, but reflected from moonlight.
We also saw lots of dolphins.
Also, the intense effort that we have been pushing with these days is not without incentive….
Indeed, we broke the one-day speed record. That is, highest amount of miles rowed in one day….
The current 1-day milage record is 115. We rowed 130 in a curve. However, the record counts in a straight line. Even still, in such a straight line, we rowed 117.
But, what we got to know later is that the record counts from 4am GMT, to 4am on the next day.
In this 4am-4am measure, we rowed 113 miles. Too short. So by the books, we missed it- but, in a 24-hour measure, we definitely got it. 4am GMT just wasn't the right window to measure our record. So, I would say that the Ocean Rowing Society could improve their jurisdiction criteria…
The record would be nice. The days are very difficult…. To make it simple, we are kind-of rowing against the weather. When our boat broaches perpendicular to the waves, in order to put it back in the position of the angle that we need, we sometimes need to pull each stroke with the power equivalent of about 100kg (220lb) dead-lift in the gym… These strokes definitely do not serve your spine well. This, I really do not like.
Until next update-