KayakVagabond

the website of Greg Stamer

Finished! Around the Rock in 44 days

Posted by Greg on July 29, 2008

Around Cape Norman

Today was borderline for the final crossing — gusty headwinds and choppy seas. The conditions weren’t unsafe but were a difficult slog with the kayak pounding hard and “buckets” of water frequently hitting my face and chest. At 8:00PM, after 12 hours and 63K I approached Quidi Vidi (pronounced “kiddie viddie”) where I started my trip 44 days ago.  Just outside of the rocky, narrow fishing harbor I was met and escorted in by two kayakers from KNL (Kayak Newfoundland Labrador). It brought a smile to my face as did seeing the KNL members who gathered in the harbor and cheered as I took my last paddle strokes. Many thanks to everyone who participated, it really warmed my heart!

It felt strange to unload the kayak and split up my gear. It felt like disbanding a “team”. This gear has been my sole material world for so long that it hasn’t fully sunk in that I won’t be repacking it again early in the morning to push toward another distant destination.  That said, tonight I am looking forward to falling into a real bed!

Tomorrow will be interesting — an interview on National TV.  It’s past midnight and I need rest, however over the next few days I’ll post some of my thoughts and reflections of the trip and start going through my photos.  For everyone who followed me virtually on this adventure, I appreciate your support, comments and well wishes.

Karel and Derrick; many thanks for your weather reports, Google maps and blogging.  You did a great job!  Many thanks to Neil and Isabelle for being such fine hosts. I fly home next Tuesday. Until then I’ll relax, enjoy a long soak in a hot tub,  beer, meet friends, beer, get a massage, and maybe beer ;^)

New: here are a few audio and video clips of my reception at Qidi Vidi:

http://www.cbc.ca/clips/rm-audio/nl-kayaker-ftr-20080729.rm  (audio)
http://www.cbc.ca/clips/rm-hi/nl-kayak-arrival-20080729.rm  (video)
http://www.cbc.ca/clips/mov/nl-kayak-arrival-20080729.mov (video)

 Greg

  1. karel vissel Said,

    Greg Congratulations great paddling

  2. hadas feldman Said,

    it was so fun reading your blog for the last 44 days…. what am i going to read now????/
    mmmmmm
    chill, relax, find a masuse, be proud and dream forward……
    well done!!!!!!
    hf

  3. René Seindal Said,

    Congratulations, Greg.

  4. Steve Gambino Said,

    Bravo! Bravo! Mr Stamer. Many happy faces here in Florida tracking your outstanding achievement. Looking forward in hearing tales of your journey over a couple of cold ones! 44 days Holy cow!

  5. Des Sullivan Said,

    Congratulations Greg…a wonderful achievement that speaks you your determination and skill. You have truly set the bar high for fellow paddlers who wish to circumnavigate this “rock”. It was a pleasure to have met you and best of luck in the future.

  6. Doug Gilliland Said,

    Congratulations on an expedition that less than 0.1% of us would attempt – much less complete. Looking forward to hearing more.

  7. Doug S Said,

    It’s been a pleasure reading about your trip over the last 44 days. Congratulations!

  8. joe flaherty Said,

    Well done. An important goal accomplished. See you soon.

  9. Marty Sullivan Said,

    Your solo, unsupported circumnavigation stands with the greatest adventures of the last 100 years. Using knowledge, preparation, and skill you’ve shown how an “adventure” can be accomplished without “misadventure.” A hearty congratulations, and I look forward to our morning workouts when you return.

  10. Wes Said,

    Congratulations Greg!

  11. Graham & Janaki Said,

    Greg,
    It was a pleasure and an honor to be part of your KNL welcome crew yesterday and to have a beer with you last night. Having paddled tiny snippets of your course we are in awe of your achievement and look forward to seeing the trip report and photos.
    You have definitely inspired us to extend our paddling range. Thanks

  12. Ragnar Midtskogen Said,

    Greg,

    Enjoyed reading your blog. Quite impressed with your accomplishment, congratulations!

  13. Freya Hoffmeister Said,

    XSWH,
    I knew you’ve learnt from me how to paddle – very good job, BBB – even without appropriate wings…:-))))))))))) – still loving you!
    Now South America or better Africa? There are bigger islands than OZ…
    TTYS!
    FGH

  14. Glenn MacKay Said,

    44 days, wow. Well done Greg, have another Keith’s India Pale Ale!

  15. Marcus Said,

    Congrats, Greg!

    Not sure how you did it both this fast and without any drama, but you did it!!

    Marcus

  16. Ruddy Said,

    Congratulations Greg! It truly is an amazing adventure you have completed. Following your trip has been rewarding and look forward to cracking open this bottle of old scotch with you and hear your heroic tales! Rest well and safe flight home where we all look forward to seeing you again soon.

  17. Jeff Stamer Said,

    Congrats Bro!
    Well, I grew up with you, so it is no surprise that there is nothing you can’t do once you set your mind to it. I wish Dad was still around to have seen this accomplishment, I’m sure he would have been as proud of you as I am.
    Jeff

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