1000 days at sea: Complete!
Editors Note: I’ve been working on Hoboken411 seven days a week for 1,500 straight days. Beat that, Reid!
1000 Day Voyage comes to an end for Reid Stowe
NYC man returns from 3-year sea voyage
“A sailor who had been cruising around the world finally returned to dry land more than three years after leaving it, arriving to the welcoming arms of loved ones, including a toddler son he had never met.
Reid Stowe, 58, had a huge grin on his face as he docked his 70-foot, two-masted schooner “Anne” at a pier near West 42nd Street on Thursday afternoon. Family and friends applauded and cheered. Stowe had been sailing nonstop for 1,152 days, missing the birth of his 23-month-old son, Darshen.
He showed no signs of seasickness when he got onto the dock and immediately kissed the cheek of his girlfriend, Soanya Ahmad, 26, and their son, who was asleep in her arms.
Stowe and Ahmad originally had planned to take a 1,000-day trip together and left from Hoboken, N.J., on April 21, 2007. Stowe already had sailed to every continent over four decades. For Ahmad, it was her first time sailing beyond the Hudson River.
But after 10 months, Ahmad abandoned her quest nearly a third of the way through, saying she was plagued by seasickness and suspecting she was pregnant. Reid continued the trip without her.
“Before we left, we had an agreement that if I had to get off for any reason, he would go on,” Ahmad said. “I knew if he came back and didn’t finish the voyage, he would just go back again. There was no way he wasn’t going to finish it.”
Stowe said seeing Ahmad leave was the hardest part of his trip.”
Continue the rest – and see ORIGINAL departure from Hoboken back in 2007 – after the jump!
(Reid Stowe returns home, continued…)
Stowe Happy to be Home
Restaurants donated food, including rice, beans, tomato sauce, pasta, chocolate and spices. Other companies contributed as well, donating money, a GPS system and even the costs and maintenance of his website. Stowe’s parents also assisted.
To keep himself busy for the last two years, Stowe repaired torn sails, painted, practiced yoga and wrote a book that he hopes to get published. He was able to send e-mails and make satellite phone calls.
Stowe said his trip breaks a record from the 1890s when a Norwegian ship traveled for 1,067 days. Stowe said he didn’t get the record verified with Guinness World Records beforehand because he couldn’t afford the entrance fee. A spokeswoman from Guinness confirmed that a claim has since been registered and it is being researched.
Charles Doane, editor-at-large of Sail magazine, is convinced Stowe set a new record. The GPS satellite system that tracked the voyage provides proof that the schooner had not touched land, he said.
Stowe’s trip wasn’t always smooth sailing, though; 15 days after setting sail, he collided with a freighter and his boat briefly capsized last February.
Stowe dedicated his accomplishment to his parents, who have helped support his travels.
His mother, Anne Stowe — the boat’s namesake — said she is happy her son is alive and well.
“I feel better than I have felt in 1,152 days,” she said, adding that it was the first time she and her husband had seen their six children together in more than 35 years.
Thursday also was the first time Stowe met his granddaughter, 3-year-old Lucy, the child of his daughter from an earlier relationship.
Stowe said that aside from his family, there was nothing that he missed while he was away. He joked that he wanted to cook the remaining tuna he had caught for dinner.
He said he planned to repair his boat — which he and his family built more than 30 years ago — and he hopes to tour around the country’s waterways with his family.
“This is my life,” Stowe said. “This is what I do.”
He may get dizzy on solid ground!
The “1000 days at sea” voyage, which set sail from the shores of Hoboken, NJ back in April of 2007 reaches another milestone.
Reid Stowe surpasses day 600
On Friday December 12, 2008 sailor, artist and boat builder Reid Stowe completed 600 of his 1,000 Days Non-Stop at Sea voyage on his handmade schooner Anne. On his return to New York in 2010, he will have spent nearly three years without stopping or resupplying, surpassing the current 658-day record for nonstop solo sailing held by the Australian Jon Sanders. After day 658, he aims to set the mark “for the longest period on record by crew or individual ever during a continuous voyage”. Beyond the records he challenges, in a world consumed by issues of ecology, energy and food, Stowe’s challenge is a studied example of self-sufficiency.
Surviving on rainwater, fresh fish, sprouted beans from stored provisions, and supplying his own energy by water and the sun while regenerating his spirit with yoga and prayer, Stowe is evidence that challenges of ecological sensitivity and survival can be met spiritually and pragmatically. The schooner contains three years of food and supplies, and provides its own energy for lights, winches, and satellite communications from solar panels, and water generators driven by the forward motion of the boat. The Anne stopped receiving shore power nearly a year before her departure, and the plan is to take no resupply of any item nor to port for 1000 days.
Stowe sees the project as a space analogous expedition because the voyage involves the same length of time as a round trip to Mars and poses similar human psychological endurance issues. He published an article in 1990 entitled “Seafarers of today provide a role model for spacefarers of tomorrow.” Twenty-one years in the planning and launched April 2007, the journey has evolved to a larger experience of spirit and heart for Stowe, his many faithful volunteers and the followers of his logs and pictures that are sent via satellite phone and published on his website (http://www.1000days.net). (411 note: His website comes up with errors asking for an older version of Java.)
“I have always seen my journeys into the wilderness of the sea as a spiritual quest. Whatever I thought this trip could be in its manifestations, my mission is to inspire the world while using love to adapt to living with the forces of the sea. As a spirit I feel like a Native American who survives alone as an initiation, a hermit in a cave in the mountains, the monk who takes a 1000-day walk or an Aborigine on walkabout. I could put up full sail and ‘schoon’ somewhere in no hurry, but we are perfectly happy where we are. Being here inspires and challenges me in many ways. I built my first boat when I was 20, a catamaran that weighed 1,400 pounds and sailed her across the Atlantic. [Now] the human society part of me says, ‘You must go, set a course.’ The divine searcher side of me says, ‘Pray here for a while, this is your place, your moment. Love sets the course’. I pray for my faithful food, the living vibrant sprouts and the fish that feed me. The winds and seas and wildlife follow me saying, ‘Save us’. I say, ‘Take me where you will, I’m seaworthy.'”
In October, the artist was inspired to discover he had, while becalmed for repairs, drawn the path of a whale in the Pacific: marking the second time the artist sailed a course to sketch wildlife on the sea. In 1996, on a 200-day excursion in preperation for the 1000 day challenge, artist Stowe chose to draw a path of a Sea Turtle, symbolic of both his schooner’s speed difference from other endurance craft and to foster more sensitivity to living creatures by sea or land.
I forgot to mention that the reason that Soanya quit after day 305 was because she was pregnant!
She recently gave birth to their son Darshon and wishes Reid well as he approaches day 500.
“Thank you everyone for all of your congratulations. I read all of them and it great to see how many people care and are still following our story. Itʼs been busy since our son arrived as any mother of a newborn can attest to, but he is a wonderful healthy baby and both Reid and I are aware of how blessed we truly are. I am in close contact with Reid and he always asks about the baby wanting to know all the details. Having a son is a new experience for him too. There are many reasons why Reid is still out at sea, too complex to describe in a short blog, but I fully support him seeing the 1000 Days through to its completion. While a part of me wishes I could still be out there with him and the mahi-mahi, another part is totally thrilled with having a little baby boy to take care of and watch grow with each passing day. We are both on a journey of a lifetime, physically separated but spiritually united and time doesnʼt mean very much in the large scheme of things. The now is where we both reside and our task is to live it exquisitely, baby, sail sewing and all!”
Speaking of his “50% done” milestone, he’ll be having a “I made it 500 days without being swallowed by a giant sea creature” party in New York on September 4th, 2008!
Today, one part of the brave couple that tried to spend 1000 days at sea is calling it quits.
Soanya Ahmad said she couldn’t take the sea-sickness anymore and probably needs to catch up on her DVR and lay on the couch. Anyway, congrats to her for setting the female record for longest sea journey.
“Its day 305 and what an adventure-filled 305 days its been. I was never bored out here at sea. There were always more things to do than I had the time or energy to do. The past three months have been especially rough for me as we entered the Southern Ocean and I experienced varying degrees of seasickness. At times the nausea was enough to lay me flat and incapable of doing anything. At other moments I was able to carry out basic functions, but not much more. While I’ve adjusted to the environment a little more this past month, I am still prone to feeling horrible on and off. I feel two more years of this would not be good for me and so I have decided to leave the boat. At the next nearest shore, I will fly home to NYC.
My leaving was not an easy decision for either of us to make. I am parting from someone I care very deeply about who will face challenges that I have come to know well, challenges that few can even conceive of. In addition, Reid will be facing two years of solitude in the wildest place on earth, something he had not expected to do anytime soon. Together we have made memories we will never forget and records that stand as a dare to anyone who wishes to take them up. Here’s to the longest man and woman non-stop sea voyage in history and the longest non-stop time a woman has ever spent at sea, among others.
But it’s not over yet. Reid will sail into the next 700 days towards his original goal of 1000 days non-stop, the longest sea voyage in history.”
Read more on the 1000 days at sea website, and see how this started in Hoboken below.
4/21/2007 Good Bye!
411 reader “YipYap” took some pics and videos.
30 second clip and more about the voyage below.
You can stop by the Shipyard Marina tomorrow to send them off to sea!
1000days Sea Voyage
starts Saturday, April 21 2007 at 3 pm
On Saturday, April 21st, 2007 at 3 PM, Reid Stowe and Soanya Ahmad will leave from the Shipyard Marina in North Hoboken aboard their 70 foot gaff-rigged Schooner Anne to begin a non-stop 1000 day sea voyage.
When they return to New York in 2010, they will have spent nearly three years out of sight of land without stopping or resupplying, surpassing the current continuous sailing record of 657 days held by Australian Jon Sanders, who circumnavigated the globe three times from 1986 to 1988.
Once the journey is complete, Stowe and Ahmad will have lived on the sea for a period longer than anyone has before: continually traveling in a high-impact, isolated environment while extending the limits of human endurance to promote a global message of inspiration, perseverance and human ecological self sustenance.
Read the rest at www.1000days.net.
1000days Launch Party
Sat 4/21/07 1 pm to 3pm
- 1:00pm – Social by SchoonerAnne at Shipyard Marina – Pier12
- 2:30pm – Speech/Press Conferance
- 3:00pm – Launch of 1000 Days Non-stop at Sea