“Four Ladies and a 28 Ft Pink Rowing Boat!”

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“Four Ladies and a 28 Ft Pink Rowing Boat!”

Got a call a few months from ago from a lady who said she has a team of lady rowers called the Coxless Crew and they are going to row across the Pacific Ocean in a pink rowing boat!

Not every day you get a call like that, however recently at Survival Wisdom we have had to expect the unexpected when answering the phone!! Her name was Laura Penhaul and she is the team leader for the 2015 “Coxless Crew” Pacific Ocean rowing challenge. The challenge is to row the 8500 miles from Los Angeles in the USA to Cairns in Australia, via Hawai and Samoa. The challenge should take 6 months and they will be the first female team to complete this Ultra challenge. The team consists of 4 very fit ladies who have sailed, ran cycled and walked all around the world, but admit this will be the biggest challenge of their lives!

To help and support them in this challenge, the SW team put together a 2 day Safety and Sea Survival package and brought in our equipment and trials expert Alf. Alf a former equipment and trials officer for the Royal Air Force, went through the teams inventory of equipment and helped them with some of the strategic decision making processes and planning neccesary for a trip of this sort. The team then helped them with some of the Safety and Emergency planning scenarios that they need to consider. The theory and workshops continued with a talk and discussion on “survival psychology”, which the team found extremely useful.

The training then continued with dry drills and examples of some of the equipment that is available and will be in their Boats Survival Go Pack and Liferaft. The Dry drills gave the team chance to practice drills that rehearse scenarios, that could occur on their journey, and what to do.

Day 2 then consisted a trip to see to practice in moderate sea conditions these drills. The team practiced the “Lady-Overboard” drill, and found how difficult and energy sapping, it is to bring a casualty onboard a moving boat in good conditions. The team then practiced the last ditch scenario, of leaving their boat and getting into a pitching liferaft. This gave the team the feeling and experience of how challenging this can be with the motion creating sea sickness symptoms very quickly.

All of the drills completed with a great sense of humour and beaming smiles, the ladies really did well and revelled in the experience of this training opportunity! To finish a short trip into Plymouth with Alistair Flower and Barry from All Marine Engineering providing the support craft, we all went ashore at the Mayflower marina for a well earned “Cup of Tea”, with no Lemons along the way! (an old tale from survival wisdom!)

The 2 days went extremely well and we wish the team well with the challenge, which is being completed in support of 2 charities, Breast Cancer and Walking with the Wounded. We will all be watching as your adventure unfolds in April 2015. If you want to sponsor or donate to the “Coxless Crew” go to the website coxlesscrew.com

See Lauras Interview for BBC Spotlight SW https://vimeo.com/109561894

Lady Overboard

Lady Overboard

 

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