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Global Circumnavigator Erden Eruç Completes Indian Ocean Row


Madagascar Landing Meant Trading Crocodile Worries for Capture by Pirates

Majunga, Madagascar – (November 26, 2010)

The closest anyone had come to crossing the Indian Ocean by human power was in 1971 when the Swedish rower Anders Svedlund landed on a beach near Antseranana on northwest Madagasgar, having left from western Australia. Others have aimed for the Seychelles or Mauritius, with only a few successful landings. In order to be considered a complete Indian Ocean crossing, the remaining 1,200 nautical miles to reach mainland Africa must be covered. 

Erden Eruç has reached Majunga on the northwest shores of Madagascar on Friday, Nov 26, 2010 after 137 days alone at sea. In his words this crossing “would certainly qualify as an adventure of a lifetime…(and) it is merely a step forward in my larger circumnavigation journey.” He will now bicycle to Toliara on the southwest shores of Madagascar before re-launching across the southern Mozambique Channel toward mainland Africa.
Eruç, a Seattle, Washington-based adventurer, is in the midst of his Six Summits Expedition, and a human-powered global circumnavigation. After cumulatively spending almost one year on a solo Pacific Ocean row, Eruç reached the Australian continent in January 2010. In order to reach the Australian shores, he had to cross the Bismarck Sea, kayak and walk his way to the south side of Papua New Guinea and row the Coral Sea before contending with crossing the ferocious Great Barrier Reef. This was followed by a vigilant watchfulness to avoid being feasted upon by crocodiles as he paddled his way south from Cape York alone in a sea kayak. He then completed a cross-Australia bicycle ride from Cooktown in Queensland – with a stop in New South Wales to climb Mt Kosciuszko -Australia’s highest peak- with his wife, Nancy, before continuing west to re-launch his rowboat on the Indian Ocean.

Earlier on October 30th, prior to making landfall, he was greeted by a surveillance helicopter launched from the Turkish frigate TCG GAZIANTEP. This frigate, which Eruç was to rendezvous west of Cap d'Ambre, in the seas west of the northern tip of Madagascar, was coincidentally named after his mother’s hometown in his native Turkey, and it is the flagship of the Combined Task Force, an international naval security arrangement to counter Somali piracy in the area. Eruç had been rowing under nightly blackout over the prior four weeks due to extreme concern about piracy in the surrounding waters and had been in regular communications with the CTF authorities.

Eruç's efforts on the Indian Ocean are significant not only because he and this same rowboat are the first to have rowed on three separate oceans – Atlantic, Pacific & Indian - but, also because as an ocean rower with 629 total career days spent on the world oceans, he is now ranked in the second place after the late Peter Bird of the UK who was lost at sea on his day 937. Eruç carries Peter Bird's logo on his rowboat in memoriam.

Solo ocean rowing by human power: single handed with no crew, no sails, no engine, just raw human power!

About Around-n-Over

Around-n-Over is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization supporting the quest of Erden Eruç to

circumnavigate the globe under human power. Eruç aims to climb the highest summits on six continents

after approaching each by bicycle and on foot, and to row across three oceans. By sharing his journey

with students and adults world-wide, Eruç aims to instill the values of selflessness, sacrifice and

perseverance in the tradition of previous adventurers and expeditions. For more information, visit: