On January 26, 2008, New York City kayaker Marcus Demuth completed the first successful circumnavigation of the Falkland Islands. Paddling a Nigel Dennis sea kayak, Demuth completed the 615-mile journey in 22 days.
The Falkland Islands are a biological hotbed located 300 miles east of Cape Horn, the southern tip of South America, and 584 miles north of Antarctica. Harsh climate and isolation ensure that the Falklands remain largely uninhabited, and as a result, populations of penguins, sea lions, giant elephant seals and pods of orca whales flourish. In the process of completing the first paddle-powered circumnavigation, Demuth documented the wildlife population of this difficult to access area.
Though Demuth was the first to successfully circumnavigate these islands by kayak, he wasn’t the first to try. Two separate British Special Forces teams and an American team all tried, unsuccessfully, to complete the trip. Though constant high winds and monster kelp fields made passage difficult for Demuth, it was mines that made things truly dangerous: “During stages of the trip I had to kayak with 2 charts, a nautical chart and a mine chart, supplied by the British Forces, in order to avoid landing on beaches which still contained mines left from the Falkland War.”
To read detailed accounts of the adventure and check out images of the spectacular array of wildlife he experienced, head over to Marcus’ Website