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2024: Lisa Roland in fastest women's pair to row the Atlantic

Lisa Roland (right)
Lisa Roland (Halifax, NS, right) and U.S. partner Lauren (Nini) Champion (Maryland, USA) now own a world record time to row across the Atlantic Ocean - 3000 miles (4828 km) in 45 days 1 hour 27 minutes from the Canary Islands to Antigua. The pair surpassed the previous world record by just under six hours, set in 2021. Roland and Champion have more than 60,000 nautical miles at sea between them, even though they had no rowing expience when they decided on this challenge in 2020. Roland used the 2023 Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge to raise money for Ocean Grown, a charity she started with Champion to provide scholarship to help former foster youth to pursue maritime careers. CBC News Feb.4/2024

2022: Mark Ervin paddles 'The Greater Loop'

June 1, 2022: Mark Ervin Fuhrmann, at 64, began his epic 10,962-km (6811 mi) solo kayak trip around eastern North America, paddling 268 days over 425 calendar days.
August 1, 2023: Mark arrived in Halifax, completing the epic voyage. He started in Halifax, like Steve Chard in 2018, taking 'The Greater Loop', a route at least 3,800 km longer than 'The Great Loop' (which turns north at New York City to Montreal Québec). He paddled up the St. Lawrence River, Ottawa River, Rideau and Trent-Severn Waterways, Georgian Bay, Lake Michigan, Illinois River, Mississippi River, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Okeechobee Waterway, Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, and the Atlantic coast back to Halifax. On this journey he raised $100,000 for Doctors Without Borders and also raised money for Captains Without Borders. He was born in Atikokan, Ontario, and has lived in Vancouver and Los Angeles, but now calls Norway home. Mark made a previous kayak voyage from Oslo, Norway to Athens, Greece in 2017 – 5,400 km in 183 days. | Facebook | Trip videos | CBC News
— Jun1 Halifax NS; Jun29 Confederation Bridge PEI; Jul15 Percé-Rock & Barachois QC; Aug1 Riviere du Loup QC; Aug24 Ottawa ON; Sep21 Killarney ON; Sep28 DeTour MI; Oct16 Chicago IL; Nov16 Savannah TN; Dec5 Mobile AL; {1 month break} Jan9 Fairhope AL; Feb6 Cape Coral FL {2 week break}; Mar3 Stuart FL; Apr7 Myrtle Bch SC; May2 Annapolis MD; Jun1 Boston MA; Jul1 Portland ME;

Scott Shawyer plans to enter 2024 Vendée Globe Race

Scott Shawyer
Canadian Scott Shawyer launched "Canada Ocean Racing" with plans to compete in the Vendée Globe in 2028. The team will compete in the IMOCA Globe Series, a series of offshore races, leading to the Vendée Globe in 2028. He aims to become the first Canadian to complete offshore sailing's pinnacle event, sailing alone around the world, non-stop and without assistance. Canadians Gerry Roufs (1996) and Derek Hatfield (2008) have previously attempted this race. | Facebook @acrossalone | | New Canadian offshore sailing campaign.. (

2022: Edward Walentynowicz entered Golden Globe Race

Edward Walentynowicz
Edward Walentynowicz, 68, of Halifax/Toronto in Noah’s Jest, a 1990 Rustler 36, was one of 16 skippers to start the 2022 Golden Globe Race (GGR) but retired for personal reasons. Edward has made several North Atlantic crossings, two without GPS navigation. A two handed, nonstop North Atlantic double-crossing adventure was awarded ‘Recreational Event of The Year’ by Sail Canada | Facebook
The GGR is a solo non-stop circumnavigation about 48,000 km (30,000 mi) using only equipment used in the 1968 race - no GPS, communication or support. Expected finish June 2023.  Race Tracker | Race News

2022: Bert ter Hart: Crossing Canada by canoe

April 1, 2022: Bert ter Hart, 63, began his 7,000 km solo paddle across Canada by canoe and portage without electronics in one season. Using maps and a sextant to find his way, just as the explorers did in the 1700s, he spends about 12 hours a day paddling 40 km. in "Kai Nani" and sleeps about 4 hours each night. Bert was born in Estevan, Sask. and now lives in British Columbia. In 2020, he became the first North American to sail solo, non-stop around the world using traditional navigation. | | Canadian Yachting (Feb-2022) | Mark Forsythe (Apr-2022) | Canadian Yachting (Apr-2022) | (Apr-2022 | (Jul-2022) | (Aug. 27-2022)
Tracking map: Apr.1 Vancouver BC, May25 Edmonton, Jun24 The Pas MB, Jul11 Winnipeg, Aug22 Ottawa, Sep6 Quebec City QC, Sep15 Mont-Joli, Sep19 Campbellton NB, Sep23 Bathhurst (Hurricane Fiona), Oct1 Big Shippagan Light NB
Nearing the end he lightheartedly said "I wondered how big the holes were in all the campsites I had ever paddled away from were and if, in fact, that would be my legacy - He left a lot of holes."

2020: Bert ter Hart: first North American to circumnavigate alone, non-stop, without modern navigation.

October 26, 2019 - July 18, 2020: Bert terHart became the first North American to sail solo, non-stop around the world using only traditional navigational tools - no modern electronic navigation. Only nine sailors have achieved this. He sailed Seaburban, an OCY 45, back to Victoria B.C. after 265 days at sea – and possibly the longest quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic! He was awarded the OCC Barton Cup for his exceptional voyage by the Ocean Cruising Club.
Circumnavigation Travel Tomorrow (Sep-2021) | Canadian Geographic (Aug-2021)

2018: Jean Socrates: oldest person to circumnavigate alone, non-stop, unassisted

Jeanne Socrates
Jeanne Socrates, at 77, became the oldest person to sail around the world alone, non-stop and unassisted. She returned to Victoria, BC. in her 11-metre S/V Nereida after 330 days.
In 2013, Socrates had already become the oldest woman to complete this journey and the first woman to accomplish it from North America. (2013: Jeanne Socrates)   2018 CBC | 2016 Canadian Yachting |

2018, 2019, 2020: Mike Ranta paddles North

Mike Ranta
July 1, 2018: Mike Ranta and his dog Spitzii made a 37-day canoe voyage with Stephen O'Neill in Canada's north, from Fort McMurray, Alberta to The Pas, Manitoba - over 1300 kms on the first leg of an Arctic journey. In north-west Saskatchewan, they did the Methye portage, the longest portage (20 km) in the regular fur trade.

July 1, 2019: Mike Ranta paddled from Fort McMurray AB to Yellowknife NWT. He travelled about 1,500 kilometres on the Athabasca River to Great Slave Lake in 22 days — much less than the five weeks he had expected. He was accompanied by Spitzii, his purebred, 11-year-old Finnish Spitz. Photo by Hailey Sonntag, Wild Canoes.

Mike is building the world's largest paddle for the Killarney Convention Centre, the largest log structure under construction in the world - see his paddle model. Feb. 2021 Guiness World Records named it the world's largest oar/paddle 33.68 m (110'6") long X 5.18 m (17') wide by Mike Ranta and Holden Rhodes.

Mike was awarded the 2020 Governor-General's Meritorious Service Medal, in recognition as a remarkable Canadian for supporting youth and veterans through his cross-country canoe expeditions. He had planned to paddle to Ottawa to receive it, but weather dictated he turn "right" and return home.   Mike Rantas Paddle (Facebook)

2018: Rylea, Kendra, & Clare paddling across Canada

A trio of women are paddling across Canada to raise funds for Cystic Fibrosis research (one has been diagnosed with the disease). They started in Vancouver April 7 and plan to paddle until October 31. They invited Mike Ranta (see below) to come along, but he had other plans. | Tracking

2017: Colin Sanders rowing across the Atlantic

December 10, 2017: Colin Sanders, 64, from Port Hope, Ontario began a 4,000-km row across the Atlantic Ocean from the Canary Islands to Antigua in 83 days. During the voyage, $147,500 was raised for Community Living Ontario.
A Million Possibilities: Solo Ocean Row 2017 | News: Canadian Yachting Dec.14/2017 | Youtube video | Ocean Rowing Central

2017: Adam Shoalts treks across Canada's Arctic

A solo 4,000-km trek of across Canada's Arctic Circle (66°33'N) by foot, pack raft and canoe from Alaska-Yukon border to Hudson Bay took Shoalts 4 months. Shoalts was already named one of Canada's top 100 explorers in 2015 by Canadian Geographic, and is a Fellow of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society. | Map of Journey

2017: Mike Ranta attempts 3rd paddle across Canada

April 1, 2017: Mike Ranta and his dog Spitzii set out on his third cross-Canada canoe voyage, this time accompanied by photo-journalist David jackson. This time, his goal was to raising awareness for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. As usual, Mike collected signatures on this canoe along the way.
October 10, 2017: Mike, Spitzii and David endured constant winds, snow squalls, and encroaching wildfires before admitting defeat. They ended their journey in Killarney, Ontario, where Mike now works on a commercial fishing boat.
{Note from Pat: Mike met a friend of mine in Winnipeg and a cousin near Killarney, but I missed him when he passed through Ottawa during Canada's 150th anniversary celebrations.}
Mike Rantas Paddle (Facebook) | Vernon Morning Star news (Mar.17/2017) | video (Feb.21/2017) | (Dec.6/2017) | 2-hour interview (Feb.21/2018)

2016: Mike Ranta's World Record Paddle Across Canada

Mike Ranta
April 1 - October 18, 2016: Mike Ranta with his dog Spitzii completed his third trip and second solo canoe journey from Pacific to Atlantic coast - more than 4,750 km in 200 days, beating his previous record from 2014. Mike's record for crossing the continent by canoe in a single year will likely stand a long time. He received no rides, accepted no help moving his gear, and only accepted donations from online fans to help with expenses.
In 2014, he paddled across Canada just short of the coast, but took longer. In 2011, he paddled from Rocky Mountain House Alberta to Montreal Quebec in 132 days.
Mike Rantas Paddle (Facebook) | Castlegar BC News (Apr.26/2016) | Global Winnipeg video | CTV Winnipeg video | (Sep.27/2016) | CBC Thunder Bay (Oct.21/2016) | CBC Ottawa video (5:51 (Nov.11/2016) | Matt LeMay video (Jan.1/2017) | (Feb.21/2017)

2016: Jayson Ambrose to Paddle the Great Loop

Jayson Ambrose
Jayson Ambrose planned to paddle a kayak around the Great Loop from Mobile, Alabama - up the east coast, New York canals to Lake Ontario, Trent-Severn Waterway to Georgian Bay, Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River, Tom-Bigbee Waterway, and back to Mobile - about 8,000 km. in 15 months. He started out October 1, but returned to Canada for personal reasons after several months. He shared many of his photos from the adventure online.
Winnipeg (Sep.3, 2016 copy) | Fox10tv (Sep.28, 2016) | Fox10tv (Oct.1, 2016)

2014: Eric Holden named Canada's Top Sailor

Eric Holden
Canadian sailor Eric Holden was Canada's first ever skipper in the Clipper Round the World Race, leading a crew of 55 amateur sailors aboard the 70-foot Henri Lloyd to win first place in one of the toughest ocean races in the world.
Sail Canada and Rolex Canada named him 2014 Rolex Sailor of the Year, after being named Sailor of the Month three times. Holden and five Canadian crew members ? Fiona Garforth-Bles, James Dick, Michael Jauncey, Morgen Watson, Phil Driver ? were jointly awarded the Gerry Roufs Trophy for offshore racing - Holden's second time being honoured. Roufs was a Canadian skipper who was lost in the Pacific in the 1996 solo race.
Clipper Round the World Race won by Canadians (Boating in Canada Blog)

2014: Mike Ranta's record paddle across Canada

eBook: Mike and Spitzii?s Great Canadian Adventure
Mike Ranta (Atikokan, Ont.) and his dog Spitzii made a 7,640 km canoe journey from Vancouver to Tatamagouche, NS (Apr.1 - Oct.31, 2014) about 350 km short of his goal at Dominion Beach, Cape Breton. His Delorme inReach geo-tracking system tracked his progress online. He was awarded 2015 Expedition of the Year Winner by Canoe & Kayak Magazine for the longest solo canoe expedition in a single season. In 2016, Mike is repeating the trip in honour of Canada's veterans. Get his ebook "Mike and Spitzii?s Great Canadian Adventure: Cross-Continental Coast to Coast Record-Breaking Solo Canoe Expedition". His personal account is must-reading for armchair adventurers - he makes you feel like you're in the canoe with him.
In 2011, Mike and Spitzii, in a Souris River Wilderness 18, had also paddled from Rocky Mountain House Alberta to Montreal Quebec – 5200 km in 132 days along the traditional voyageur route – a world record for solo canoeing. | (Sep/2014) (text) | (Mar/2015) | Canoe & Kayak magazine Video (Jan/2015) | Mike Ranta finishes 4,750-mile adventure | eBook: "Mike and Spitzii?s Great Canadian Adventure: Cross-Continental Coast to Coast Record-Breaking Solo Canoe Expedition"

2013: Jeanne Socrates

Jeanne Socrates
Jeanne Socrates (70) from England, became the oldest woman to sail non-stop single-handed around the world (2012-2013) - all made without shore-based support.
In 2016, accidents and equipment problems ended attempts to become the oldest sailor to sail single-handed around the world - achieved in 2019.
CBC 2013 | Canadian Yachting 2016 |

2011: Derek Hatfield (1952-2016)

Derek Hatfield
Derek Hatfield, Canada's top solo sailor, took third place in the 2010/11 Velux 5 Oceans solo round the world yacht race. Derek is the only Canadian to have sailed solo around the world twice. In the 2002/3 Velux 5 Oceans, his yacht Spirit of Canada was capsized and the mast destroyed rounding Cape Horn, but he managed to repair the boat and finished the race, becoming the 126th person to sail around the world alone.
In 2008 Hatfield raced in the Vendée Globe but had to retire when his yacht's rig was damaged.
Hatfield began working with the Broad Reach Foundation for Youth Leaders in 2003, a charity that teaches at-risk youth to sail.

2011: Jack Nye

Jack Nye
If you've ever dreamed about sailing oceans, read about Jack Nye's 18th Atlantic Voyage - at the age of 86!

2010: David Wright saves Kiteboarder

David, a Canadian Laser sailor, was training in Mexico when roused from bed by a panicked man after his kiteboarding friend hadn't made it back to shore. Local police did not help. After 3 hours of grid search in a powerboat using his Merchant Marine Academy training, he located the lost kiteboarder. #RealCanadianHero [Montreal Gazette April/2010]

2007: Meagan McGrath saves Everest Climber

Meagan is another climbing hero, risking her life to save Usha Bista, a female climber from Nepal, in Mount Everest's infamous "death zone". #RealCanadianHero [Toronto Star May/2007 | CTV May/2007]

2006: Andrew Brash saves Everest Climber

Although not a sailor, Andrew is a Canadian hero. 200 metres short of the summit of Mount Everest, Andrew abandoned his climb to save Australian climber Lincoln Hall, who was dying of altitude sickness. In May 2008, he returned to reach the top of the world's tallest mountain. #RealCanadianHero [CBC June/2006]

2003: Tony Gooch

In 2002-2003, this Canadian sailor is the only person to circumnavigate solo non-stop from the West Coast of North America. []

1988: Lawrence Lemieux

Canadian Finn class sailor Lawrence is our hero from the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Sailing in second place, he left his race to rescue two Singapore sailors Joseph Chan and Siew Shaw Her. They were competing in the 470 class when their boat overturned, throwing them into rough waves. Lemieux finished 22nd but was recognised by the IOC with the Pierre de Coubertin medal for his bravery and sacrifice. #RealCanadianHero [Edmonton Journal March/2008]

1986: Gus Dalton (1931-2018)

Gus Dalton, captain of a fishing boat, saved 155 men, women and children floating in lifeboats six miles off the coast of St. Shott's town, Newfoundland in August 1986. The Sri Lankan Tamils were victims of human trafficking that had been abandoned in the Atlantic for 3 days when he happened upon them. Most of the refugees went on to settle and prosper in Montreal and Toronto. [International Business Times Jan/2018]

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