They’re Off – The Ocean Brothers Start Their Voyage

05.56 GMT and it’s a dark morning in Gran Canaria as Greg Bailey and Jude Massey, (The Ocean Brothers) paddle out of their mooring to begin the adventure of a lifetime. They are aiming to row across the Atlantic to raise money for the British Skin Foundation, in aid of Jude’s father and Greg’s stepfather who lost his battle with skin cancer in August 2015.

Their start didn’t go completely to plan, being delayed by 3 days due to gale force winds, but by Thursday 18th January they had calm weather and light winds. Their aim was to row due south for the first few days to make the most of the northerly winds before the easterlies kicked in, but once again the weather was not kind to them. A voice message from Greg on 22nd January, (day 5), described the bumpy and gruelling first 4 days which included 25 ft. waves and a broken water maker. Powered by solar panels this can make 5 litres per hour and should work 4 hours a day to provide the 20 litres of water they will need for drinking, cooking and washing. For emergencies they do have a manual water maker, which is tiring and slow to use, and 20x2litre bottles of drinking water.

Greg described the start as 4 days of agony and a huge emotional low. However, with the water maker repaired and the weather more settled, they sounded in good spirits. The wind is more easterly now and they have 15 knots behind them.

They hope to reach Barbados by mid-March, but for the next 6 – 11 weeks their home is “Rannoch Adventure” and its small cabin, festooned with photos of family and friends, including a dog. They will survive on a diet of 3 freeze dried meals per day, but as vegans their meals will include such delicacies as Chilli Non Carni. They expect to lose about 2 stone in weight.

We wish them well as they continue. Follow their progress here as their adventure unfolds.

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