Back in the spring, we blogged about the crazies from all over the country who met up in the Pacific Northwest to gather together for a fairly typical sailing race start. But everything that took place after that start was pretty atypical. These sailors were not just racing around the buoys or doing an overnight distance race. They were off with their bows pointed – more or less – towards Ketchikan, Alaska.
The 750 mile race is divided into 2 stages – almost cut in half.
This jovial race description meets you on the R2AK website and it’s so fitting I’ll share it here:
It’s in the spirit of tradition, exploration, and the lawless self-reliance of the gold rush that Race to Alaska was born. R2AK is the first of its kind and North America’s longest human and wind powered race, and currently the largest cash prize for a race of its kind.
It’s like the Iditarod, on a boat,
with a chance of drowning
…being run down by a freighter, or eaten by a grizzly bear.
There are squalls, killer whales, tidal currents that run upwards of 20 miles an hour, and some of the most beautiful scenery on god’s green earth.
Even if you didn’t care then – care for the first few minutes of this cool video accounting some East Coast sailors who traveled cross country to race their “beach catamaran” in this crazy race. The video is somewhat long – but it’s really well done and the story of this race is so cool. And when it pops up again next spring, you’ll be following the crazies. I know I will.