What's the record for being at sea the longest?


What’s the longest you’ve been at sea? Maybe a three day passage to South Brittany or five across Biscay, or perhaps one of the longer RORC races, maybe 18 days on the ARC for some. For me it’s 29 days of uphill slog across the North Atlantic and very unpleasant it was too for most of the time.

But who holds the record for the longest time spent at sea, apart from the Flying Dutchman of course? I only ask because Reid Stowe, who is attempting to stay at sea for 1,000 days, out of sight of land and without re-supply has just reached his half way mark of 500 days. But impressive though that is, it is eclipsed by Jon Saunders who sailed his 47 foot Parry Endeavour solo and non-stop three times around the world in 659 days.

But back to Reid, who has had many adventures, is currently meandering around the Pacific Ocean. He started off with Soanya Ahmed as crew but she was taken off the Schooner Anne suffering chronic seasickness and later gave birth to their son, Darsen. Here is his log on day 500

“In my timeless state of mind I almost forgot to note my milestone of reaching 500 days non-stop at sea without resupply. Time has passed quite fast, perhaps because I am comfortable at sea and keeping myself well occupied by working through out the day. I have been able to fix most of the things that have worn out or broken and I am still quite confident of the schooner’s abilities to keep going longer than any boat has gone on the sea. I have been able to catch rain and fill my tanks with drinking water. All of the food is preserving well and I have more than I need. I eat a healthy diet including fish and living sprouts every day. The hard work of sailing and maintaining the schooner has often made me sore handed, but I love the physicality. A good yoga session each day helps keep me limber and in tune with my body, mind and environment. In spite of some disappointments, hardships and setbacks I’m quite happy out here and continually appreciative of my situation and the wonders of nature around me. With luck and the grace of God I will continue to live at sea and perhaps I will depart the touch of the land for longer than any human since we evolved on this planet. My strategy is to keep doing what I have been doing. I will keep sharing this voyage as live and candidly as possible. I sent a lot of gratitude and love ashore to everybody!”