Man Paddled Atlantic Ocean For Charity, Breaks World Record

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Man Paddled Atlantic Ocean For Charity, Breaks World Record

Chris Bertish, 42, broke a world record on March 9 after he completed a 4,050-mile solo stand-up paddleboard trip across the Atlantic Ocean.

The South African man arrived in English Harbour, Antigua 93 days after departing from Agadir, Morocco. He paddled an average of 43 miles a day then did an additional 17 miles on his final day to meet his goal. Not only did Bertish achieve a record-breaking feat, he also raised about $500,000 for charity.

"I've been paddling alone, solo, in the open ocean, for 93 days..I've covered over 4050NM/ 7500km...and we've raised over 6.5 Million Rand for charity!" he wrote in his final 'captain's log' on Facebook.

Bertish Landing

Posted by Supthemag on Thursday, March 9, 2017

"It's an incredible day... It's the culmination of everything I've been working on and towards for half a decade now and it's a day that will change history, the world and both my life and the lives of millions of little children in South Africa forever!" he added.

According to The Guardian, Bertish crossed the ocean on a custom-built 20ft board that was designed by naval architect, Phil Morrison. The paddle board cost $120,000 and took 6 months to build.

He paddled mostly at night to protect himself from sun exposure and he relied on gadgets like a GPS, VHF radios, an autopilot system, satellite phone, solar panels, water stores and weather forecasting equipment to get to the finish line. His diet consisted of protein shakes, freeze-dried meals and salty jerky and he slept in the small cabin located in front of the board.

Bertish is hoping his journey will inspire people to take on more challenges especially kids. He wrote: "When someone tells you something is Impossible... Say to them, there is no such thing as Impossible, unless you believe it to be.. So maybe you believe it's impossible for you, but I'm not you and there is no such thing... Especially if you believe in...I'MPossible! The word Impossible should motivate you and inspire you to want to go out and try, it's a challenge to you to find a way, find a solution that no one else has thought of.."

Although his challenge ended, Bertish is still raising funds for children's programs in South Africa including The Lunchbox Fund and Operation Smile. You can read more about his journey and charitable work here. What an incredible human!

Blair isn't a bestselling author, but she has a knack for beautiful prose. When she isn't writing for Shared, she enjoys listening to podcasts.