Where are our 2007 Featured Explorers Now?
Through 2007 we featured 11 adventurers along with a snapshot of what they were currently up to. To start the new year we’ve put together a brief list of where they’re at now.
Rosie Swale-Pope – Running Around the World
In February, 2007, Englishwoman Rosie Swale-Pope was in the midst of running around the world. She had spent over three years jogging alone through Europe, Russia, Siberia, Alaska and Canada and had made it as far as Alberta.
Over the past eleven months Rosie continued down into the U.S. and on to New York. She then followed the east coast into the maritime provinces of Canada. Rosie is currently in New Brunswick and is hoping to find passage in a cargo ship from Nova Scotia to Greenland where she will resume her run.
Tim Cope: Following the Route of Ghengis Khan by Horseback
Last March we found Tim Cope, his three horses, and dog, Tigon, in the middle of Ukraine. They had been trekking through the Steppe for three years following the route of Ghengis Khan. Unfortunately, the tragic death of Tim’s father resulted in a prolonged hiatus.
Tim returned to the saddle and on September 22nd, 2007 he reached the Danube River, a geographical line marking the western perimeter of Khan’s vast empire. In completing his three-year sojourn through the Steppes of Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Hungary and Ukraine, Tim became the first in modern times to make this arduous journey by horseback.
We caught up with Tim in Washington, D.C. in November where he was being honored by National Geographic Adventure for completing this compelling adventure.
Karl Bushby: Walking Around the World
Englishman Karl Bushby is attempting to walk 58,000 km from the bottom of South America all the way to England leaving an unbroken trail of footprints. As of April, 2007, Karl had spent nine years trekking through South America, North America, across the ice of the Bering Strait, and into Siberia.
By far the most challenging part of the expedition is traversing the Beringian Gap, a 5,000 km swath of wilderness and ocean separating the Alaskan road system from the roads in NE Siberia.
Karl has struggled through three-quarters of the Beringian Gap and has made it to Bilibino in Chukotka. It has been necessary for Karl to fly back to Alaska so he can renew his passport and permit for the Chukotka region. He is hoping to be back in Bilibino in February where he will make the final 1600 km push to the Kolyma Highway (also known as the “Road of Bones). Once on the established road system of Siberia, Karl will have the toughest part behind him.
Mike Horn: From Pole to Pole to Pole
We reported in May that Mike Horn is planning an expedition to circumnavigate the world via the North and South Poles propelled by wind and human power.
Mike is still in the early stages of preparation for this four-year challenge, but in the meantime he is honing his high altitude climbing skills. Last summer Mike Horn, along with three others, attempted to climb four peaks over 8000 metres without supplemental oxygen. They successfully summitted Gasherbrum I (8068 M) and Gasherbrum II (8035 M) before the season came to a close. This is pretty impressive considering Mike is a newcomer in the world of high altitude climbing.
Reid Stowe and Soanya Ahmad - 1000 Days in a Boat
When we last reported on Reid Stowe and Soanya Ahmad’s attempt to sail the oceans unsupported and non-stop for 1000 days, things were looking a little tenuous. They’d only just begun their sailing voyage and had collided full-speed into the side of a freighter. Although their boat didn’t sink, considerable damage was inflicted on the bowsprit necessitating emergency repairs.
They’ve now been on the ocean for 255 days and are managing quite well in their jury-rigged schooner. Reid and Soanya are in no hurry to get anywhere, and after making a giant loop of the Atlantic Ocean they set course across the bottom of Africa. Currently they are approximately 1000 km SE of South Africa and are heading east. Just 745 more days to go!
Greg Kolodziejzyk: speeding across the Atlantic Ocean in a pedal boat
Our July featured adventurer was Greg Kolodziejzyk, a Calgarian planning to complete the fastest human-powered solo crossing of the Atlantic Ocean. Greg already holds two world records – the greatest distance covered in 24 hours on a bicycle and the greatest distance in 24 hours on a human-powered boat.
Greg is moving quickly with the construction of his sleek pedal-powered craft and is planning his Atlantic attempt late in 2008. He will be departing from the Canary Islands near Africa and arriving in the Caribbean.
Derek Hatfield – The world’s most grueling race
Canadian Derek Hatfield is preparing for what is reputed to be the world’s most grueling race – the Vendée Globe. This round-the-world sailing challenge will commence in November 2008, and preparations for Derek are going well.
In the meantime Derek Hatfield plans to take part in the IMOCA circuit, a series of transatlantic and around-the-world crewed and solo races.
Jarle Andhøy - Wild Vikings on the Berserk Expedition
The most comedic update comes from the Norwegian crew of the Berserk expedition. These self-proclaimed modern-day Vikings were attempting to sail through the Northwest Passage.
When the crew arrived in Halifax from New York, one crewmember was deported by Canadian authorities because of affiliations with the Norwegian division of Hell’s Angels. Captain Jarle Andhoy (29) and his remaining crew then sailed to Greenland where they reunited with their rogue crewmember. The Vikings went on to successfully navigate the Northwest Passage, joining the ranks of only a few dozen who have done so.
Upon entering the community of Cambridge Bay, the crew was immediately arrested by the Canadian RCMP. Their most recent web blog details the incident:
‘Yes, its over,’ said David and walked toward the chopper with both hands above his head as two snipers were aiming at his chest. Fred was next. The complete crew met again in Cambridge Bay prison.
Captain Jarle Andhoy and another crew member were ordered deported by Canadian immigration officials. The officials state that Jarle had misled the RCMP by concealing an illegal crew member. An official also said that criminal charges were pending.
Somehow the Norwegian Vikings were able to extricate themselves from a very sticky situation, as detailed on their website:
Captain Jarle was offered to return the Berserk to Greenland, but did not accept the Canadian terms. He referred to international maritime law and said the Berserk will sail west whether Canada accepts it or not. The wild Vikings were all deported out of Canada by plane and the Berserk was stuck in Cambridge bay. But the destiny of expedition didn’t end there.
A crew of pirates boarded Berserk, hoisted the Jolly Roger and sailed the ship to open waters away from Canadian authorities, but soon Captain Jarle went back and boarded ship again. The destination of the expedition was to sail Amundsens wake to Nome. Although Canadian authorities delayed the ocean voyage and increased the risk for bad weather and ice through some of the most treacherous waters in the world Berserk sailed on through snow blizzards, gales and icy waves through the Bering Strait to Nome.
Karsten Heuer & Leanne Allison - Finding Farley
Karsen Heuer and Leanne Allison were journeying slowly across Canada to visit Canadian icon Farley Mowat. En route they visited many of the locations Mowat had detailed in his books. After more than five months of canoeing, hiking, sailing and other modes of transport, the family finally reached Farley Mowat in Newfoundland. They are currently working on a book and documentary, both of which will be released in 2009.
Rob Cassibo – Cycling around the World
In November Rob Cassibo was in Alberta, on the home stretch of a round-the-world bike ride. After cycling over 108,000 km, Rob only had four thousand km remaining to reach his home town of Manitoulin, Ontario.
It was treacherous winter cycling, but in mid December Rob Cassibo finally arrived back in Mantoulin after six years on the road. Undoubtedly he enjoyed his well-deserved Christmas dinner.
Our most recent post featured an expedition attempting to run the Amazon River from source to sea. Their journey has been fraught with difficulties including being shot at and wrapping their raft in the whitewater. Illness has also been a problem, and recently a South African team member was flown home due to an unidentifiable problem creating inflammation of the liver and joints.
The four-person team has been whittled down to two. Nathan Welch and Mark Kalch, currently in Iquitos will soon be continuing their journey towards the Atlantic Ocean in their rubber raft.