RACE UPDATE – On June 18, 2014 I set out from Monterey Bay as part of the Great Pacific Race, and for anyone watching you would have seen the tough conditions trying to get out of Monterey Bay. I actually rowed 40 nautical miles within the bay just trying to get out against winds and currents. My hands and the blisters on them are testament to the effort required just to do so. On June 21 I had finally made it out of the bay and was just off Point Pinos when I received word of strong winds coming in which would have pushed me onto the rocks overnight. I was advised to row back to safe harbor which I complied with for safety reasons. With 2 US Coast Guard Rescues of other rowers and conditions worse than expected it was the only logical choice to make. On June 23 race organizers advised remaining rowers that they would no longer be able to support further boats leaving as part of the Great Pacific Race – meaning that any row to Hawaii would be totally unassisted if attempted. It is a heartbreaking announcement as rowing to Hawaii with support is one thing, but unassisted is totally another. What does this mean for me and for the project? Well it means that any row to Hawaii this year is totally out of the question. Common sense and safety have to come into play no matter how much I want to do this.
So even though a row to Hawaii is totally off the cards, I am not prepared to give up on the project and my commitment to raising awareness and funds for bird conservation. This is too important and the world needs to know that these animals need help – and need help now. I just won’t give up on them. I hope you won’t either.
The last two days have been spent planning a row down the California coast to San Diego to continue doing what I was doing with the row to Hawaii. The format will be slightly different, but I am planning stops at various ports along the way to promote and talk about bird conservation. This is still an awareness and fundraising campaign and I fully intend on making the most of the situation which has presented itself. I hope that if you are situated somewhere along the California coast between Santa Barbara and San Diego that you can help out by maybe organizing a speaking date or even for your bird club to come out and meet me along the way. It is time to rally and I hope you will help.
I have put my heart and soul into this over the last 2.5 years and words can not describe how disappointed I am, but again I will not give up on these birds. As soon as I have a firm date for a Santa Barbara launch I will let you know. For those who have adopted miles as part of this race they will be converted to miles as part of the new row. As always all funds raised will continue to go into the pool of funds to fund grants once the row is complete.
So I will keep everyone up to date as I have details. If you are looking for a story of pure determination to do something good for the endangered bird species on our planet then you have it.