Atlantic Adventure Update

June 14, 2006 

Four University of Puget Sound graduates are attempting to become the first Americans to row across the North Atlantic as participants in the first Atlantic Ocean Fours Race. The team, OAR Northwest, left New York Harbor on June 10.

DAYS: 6

LOCATION: As of 7:42 a.m., June 14

Latitude: 39 54.1 N, Longitude: 68 49.8 W

ONBOARD: OAR Northwest spent Wednesday preparing for a storm they expected to encounter last night. The group has realized its expectation of battling seasickness for the first week. Jordan Hanssen needed several days before he was well enough to send correspondence. The team seems to have settled in nicely to their summer home on the sea. Greg Spooner says as he and Hanssen ate cornmeal and tuna after their shift Tuesday, Dylan LeValley and Brad Vickers were pulling the boat along at 4 knots (about 4.6 mph). At that pace, the team would make the crossing in less than 29 days. However, conditions will likely slow them down. One of the three British teams in the four-team race has already had to pull out because of a broken rudder. So far, the team reports encounters with a large sunfish and a container ship. While the team says they are strong and doing well rowing in two-hour shifts, there is no getting around the challenge of the night shift. "The hardest part is working in your mind¹s haze," Hanssen wrote. "Your mind may be wandering but the pain is very real. Fortunately, this does not last long and sleep comes two hours later."

MORE INFORMATION: Visit thenewstribune.com/Adventure for stories on OAR Northwest and a link to the team blog.

Craig Hill, The News Tribune

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