Bart de Zwart paddling from Tahiti to Bora Bora | Photo: Tim Mc Kenna
BORA BORA, French Polynesia - Bart de Zwart has just completed another monster paddle journey, this time crossing the 180 mile stretch from Tahiti to Bora Bora. The Dutch endurance machine seems to be constantly finding new ways to test his own strength against the many faces of mother nature. He's an inspiring athlete and one we always enjoy watching.
While we're all still waiting for his arrival photos to surface, his (immensely understanding) wife, Dagmar, has been keeping us informed all along the way on his blog. She has a way with words and you can hear the love, support and concern in her voice when narrating. If you haven't checked out Bart's SUP Crossing blog, click the link to find it.
One of Bart's departure photos
Here is her report from his arrival: Just before sunset Bart made landfall in Bora Bora. He didn't expect that paddling the last miles would be that cruel. He got current against him and finally even the wind against him. He had to put all his last strength into that finish. I just talked to him. He is feeling very tired, has sea legs, had to sit down right away and drink a coke to bring his circulation back up and fight the dizziness. They are having a celebration for him right now. He will call me later. It was so good to hear his voice. Photos will follow in the next post.
Bart's 2015 Starboard Expedition Prototype
Here's another great sample from the last few days.
I must say that this is not my favorite time of the day. I don't like it when he is out there in the night. Hopefully it's clear skies and lots of stars out there. When we sailed around the world I never favored the night shifts very much. What I like a lot about being on the ocean when it's dark is when the moon rises and you are under this amazing curtain of stars. That's magic, something what let you drift away like in a meditation. The slow movement of the waves. The really black water is something what scared me. The sound of the waves soothes it.
I know how much Bart was looking forward to do this crossing, how much planning and preparation he put into it. He admires the tradition of paddling in the Pacific Ocean, wants to show how voyaging still can be done long distance between the islands, just with manpower, to honor the ancient tradition.
When I look at his tracker you can tell that he makes great progress.
Bart was very excited when he tested his expedition board yesterday. It performs better then he expected. The rudder works great.
Bart's Tech Gear List
- GOPRO Camera Hero 3
- Small waterproof hand camera, Canon D10
- 2x GPS, Delorme and Garmin
- Epirb, ACR
- Tracker Delorme Inreach
- Iphone (for 2 way, short message communication via Inreach)
- Hand watermaker, Katalyn
- 2x Headlamp
- Strobe lamp
- VHF radio (not in the picture)
- Backup battery to charge cameras and iPhone