Are you feverishly hungry to pedal across the ocean? If you have roughly $82,000 to spare and an iron stomach, this crazy adventure could literally be at your feet.
Canadian entrepreneur and adventurer Greg Kolodziejzyk, 51, has a dozen Ironman triathlons and even more marathons under his belt. His endurance both in cycling and on water led him to become a multiple-time world record holder, most recently in 2008 for the greatest distance traveled in 24 hours on flat water using only his muscles.
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That same year he advanced with plans to cross the Atlantic using a custom pedal-powered boat called WiTHin. His initial goal: Beat the record set by rower Emmanuel Coindre, who went from the Canary Islands to Guadeloupe in 43 days.
Then his goal shifted, turning into a quest to become the first to cross the Pacific — from British Columbia to Hawaii — in a human-powered vessel.
Kolodziejzyk originally pulled the vessel together with nearly $119,000 through fundraising and donations. Designed by a naval architect and human powered boat engineer, the lightweight WiTHin is constructed from carbon fiber, has six watertight compartments, a steel keel bulb for stability, and solar panels that power sophisticated navigation equipment. The pedal drive unit sits in the cockpit's forward area.
In 2010, Gizmag's Ben Coxworth called it "a marvel of marine engineering."
Kolodziejzyk wanted to show the potential for human power, but numerous offshore trials put him face-to-face with gales. The vessel apparently stayed water-tight and rolled 360 degrees without leaking. However, "because WiTHiN was designed to be very fast, she is narrow and as such, rolls quite a bit in rough seas," Kolodziejzyk explained on his site. All that movement proved too much for him.
Now he hopes someone more cut out for sea travel will take over the pedals. Kolodziejzyk recently announced he's selling WiTHin for $84,000 CDN (about $82,000 USD) or better offer. He's throwing in all the necessary equipment and supplies, including a waterproof sleeping bag and a survival suit. Whoever does end up purchasing the vessel better have some serious sea legs.
Photo: The cockpit of Greg Kolodziejzyk's pedal-powered vehicle, called WiTHiN. Credit: Greg Kolodziejzyk.