American sailor Reid Stowe just finished an endurance test that beats pretty much anything on the high seas.
He set off in a sailboat on April 21, 2007 and didn’t touch land again until he returned to port in Manhattan on Tuesday. That’s 1,152 days at sea.
His girlfriend Soanya Ahmad, who had no previous open ocean sailing experience, joined him for the expedition but had to return to land after ten months because she was feeling seasick. That “seasickness” turned out to be morning sickness, and the first thing Stowe got to do once getting home was to greet his 23-month old son Darshen. Ms. Ahmad says she and Stowe agreed that he would continue the trip. Ahmad told the BBC that he would have gone back to sea sooner or later anyway.
That’s one understanding woman, Stowe. You better keep her.
Stowe had to fight hard to make his dream come true. He originally wanted to leave in 1992, but he had trouble finding funding. One of the reasons for the expedition was to simulate the isolation and stress of a Mars mission, which would take a similar amount of time. The original plan called for a crew of six to eight, the number generally agreed upon to make an effective interplanetary team. It seems Reid had trouble convincing others to join him so he set off with only his girlfriend. Reid kept his sanity by practicing yoga and writing a book. Maintaining a ship for that long without refitting took a major effort too.
The Guinness Book of World Records is checking his claim and if verified, he’ll certainly become a new entry. Considering that he was tracked by GPS, things are looking good for Mr. Stowe.