Expedition Update: Olly Hicks Does Circles on Antarctic Circumnavigation

Text by Tetsuhiko Endo

Feeling like your job has got you stuck in a rut?  At least you aren’t doing circles in the Southern Ocean like Olly Hicks, 26, who is 12 days into his attempt at the first rowing circumnavigation of Antarctica—and literally going backwards due to a strong headwind reports The Adventure Blog.

This is not the most encouraging start for an expedition that Hicks expects to cover 18,000 miles and take 18 to 22 months of open ocean rowing. Bear in mind though: This is the man who rowed from the U.S. to Britain at age 23, making him the youngest person to ever row across any ocean. A little wind isn’t about to blow him off his game. He also has the advantage of a state-of-the art Virgin-sponsored vessel which, according to the expedition website, is “probably the most advanced rowing boat ever made.” But it’s still a rowboat, and therefore powered only by Hick’s arms, and the roughly 6,000 calories he eats every day in military “boil in the bag” rations. The good people at Virgin also add a few treats to every meal like Mars bars and “One penny sweets.”  If the weather stays like this, Hicks is going to be needing those sweets.

Follow his progress daily through an interactive map, blog postings, and YouTube videos on the expedition website.