In less than a year I will be giving up the comforts of home to spend almost 2 months rowing across the Pacific. I will be competing in the Great Pacific Race; a 2,400 mile rowing race from California to Hawaii with three other ladies, whom I have never met.
My name is Emma, I am 27 and work as an Accountant at a Big 4 firm in London. I have been rowing on the Thames for around 5 years but never been to sea in anything other than the ferry across the Channel, so this will be a huge learning curve for me.
The row is man-powered and self-sufficient so we will live on board the 24ft boat for the entire crossing. We hope to complete the journey within 50 days which, if we achieve it, will see us break the world record for the fastest all-female crossing. Each day we will row for 12 hours in 2 hour shifts, eat freeze-dried food and burn a casual 6,000 calories.
So why do it? First and foremost, it’s the challenge. The race will give us the opportunity to push ourselves to our limits, which no other challenge can do in the same way. To stay safe we need to be committed in our preparation, push through on the water even when it’s the last thing we want to do and be able to resolve problems when we are exhausted and have very limited resources. It’s a great way to build mental and physical resilience whilst doing something that I love, for a cause which I am passionate about.
As a Community Champion for Sustainable Merton and an ambassador for 5 Gyres I will be rowing to raise awareness of environmental sustainability. My passion is to reduce the prolific use of single-use plastics which contaminate our oceans, and rowing through the North Pacific Gyre will give me first-hand experience of just how serious the problem is. The monetary cost of the row is high (equivalent to a house deposit per crew member), but the cost of not raising awareness is even greater.
Visit our Newsletter Archive to find out how Emma's challenge unfolded...