(TheOceans.net) After 720 days over land and water, Colin Angus and Julie Wafei have completed Expedition Canada. "On May 20, 2006, the two native Canadians completed the first human powered circumnavigation, said the couples webmaster.
"Colin traveled a total of 43,000 km by rowboat, bicycle, canoe, ski and foot a voyage that spanned 3 continents, 2 oceans and 17 countries. Julie traveled with him for most of the expedition, including rowing 10,000 km unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean, making her the first woman to row across the Atlantic from mainland to mainland and the first Canadian woman to row across any ocean.
Bikes, skiis and rowboats
It all began nearly two years ago when Canadian Colin Angus and a couple of friends decided to circumnavigate the Earth. But there was a catch he wanted to do it using only human power. After paddling across the Yukon River, rowing across the Bering Strait, and hiking, skiing and cycling across Siberia and Russia, the team celebrated the completion of Part 1 of their journey in Moscow. From there it was all Colin and Julie.
The two native Canadians would cycle from the Russian capitol to Portugal where they would leave their bikes behind and row 10,000 km from Lisbon to Limon, enduring one of the worst hurricane seasons in history. But then again, no one said it was going to be easy.
A tough road behind them
The last leg of their journey from Costa Rica to Vancouver, Canada, had Colin and Julie back on their bikes.
peddle North began in the port of Limon, and took the couple through the highs and lows of Central America from the paradise sandy beaches of Costa Rica to the machete wielding thieves in Chiapas, Mexico. The two explorers quickly learned just how fast they could cycle. Eventually Colin and Julie were happy to leave the hair raising experience of middle America behind them.
Zero emissions trip
The team used zero-emissions travel to highlight issues with global warming and to inspire others to use non-motorized transportation, Colin told the press and onlookers as they rolled into Vancouver.
According to their home manager, the couple is now creating a documentary, TV series and book based on their adventure. This fall, they plan to tour across Canada with a multimedia presentation and in spring 2007, Colin's book, Beyond the Horizon, will be released. We are developing an adventurer's resource center divulging hard-to-find information (cold weather travel, ocean rowing, etc.), which will be available soon on the website, said Colin.
Even though they are back at home in Vancouver, Colin and Julie still maintain a zero-emissions lifestyle, using their bicycles for almost all their transportation and cargo-lugging needs.
Its been a busy two months since Julie and Colin rolled into Vancouver finishing their 43,000 km circumnavigation, says the teams manager.
In that time the duo moved into their new home on Vancouver Island, Colin completed his book, the fall multi-media tour has been organized, and Colin and Julie are developing their entertaining show. The film tour schedule can be viewed at http://www.expeditioncanada.com/books.htm. And the team is excited to announce that their accomplishment will be featured in a promotional video for the 2010 Olympics.
So whats for the couple?
The wedding, said Julie. Were getting married in June of 2007.
Colin and Julie do have another adventure planned, but for now they are focused on using their past expedition to promote low or no-emissions transportation.
A trail across Canada
As many may know, a trail is currently being built that will span Canada from all three Oceans: the Trans-Canada trail, says the teams manager. This corridor will enable hikers, and cyclists to explore Canada away from the hustle and bustle of highways. Creating cycling and walking corridors are a major step in luring people out of their automobiles, and the Trans-Canada Trail is definitely an inspiring pathway.
Colin and Julie plan to use their upcoming books, tour, and film to promote and raise funds for this Canadian project.
Stay tuned for Colin and Julie's next adventure you can check their website Expedition Planet Earth in the links section for further updates.
The expedition was also covered in the Globe and Mail travel section every second Saturday. Discovery channel interviewed the couple and filmed them in their boat for an extensive piece aired on Daily Planet.
Here's the expedition itinerary:
JULY to AUGUST 2004 - Paddle the Yukon River
Colin and Tim (Harvey) transferred their equipment into a canoe and paddled 1,500 km on the Yukon River, navigating through rapids, stormy weather and suffocating smoke from the raging forest fires to reach Fairbanks, Alaska. They then switched to an ocean going rowboat that they customized and delivered ahead of time. They rowed the remaining 1,600 km of the Yukon River to the North Pacific Ocean.
SEPTEMBER 2004 - Row across the Bering Sea
From the mouth of the Yukon River, the team rowed 800 km across the Bering Sea in their offshore rowboat to reach Siberia. This is one of the most treacherous areas of ocean in the world and had never before been crossed in a rowboat.
OCTOBER to NOVEMBER 2004 - Hike Eastern Siberia
In Siberia a Russian female explorer, Yulya, joined the team. The trio hiked 850 km across the roadless mountainous terrain of Northeastern Siberia. The conditions at times were quite difficult with bogs forcing the team to walk through rivers in -15°C temperatures while blizzards blinded them.
DECEMBER to JULY 2005 - Ski and cycle across Russia
Once the bogs froze and the ground snow-covered, the 2,300 km overland ski and bicycle trek began. Their bikes were specially modified to ride on frozen roads and rivers of ice.
JULY to SEPTEMBER 2005 - Bike across Europe
In Moscow the team celebrated the end of Part 1 of the expedition, Vancouver to Moscow. Colin and Julie continued to travel from Moscow to Vancouver, bicycling 5,500 km across Europe, traveling through the Ukraine, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal.
OCTOBER 2005 to FEBRUARY 2006 - Row across Atlantic Ocean
An ocean rowboat was shipped to Portugal and readied for its Atlantic crossing. Originally the team wanted to use the same boat that crossed the Bering Sea, but it proved too difficult to transport it out of Russia in a reasonable time period. Instead the team is using a 24ft Woodvale Pairs ocean rowboat.
Colin and Julie left for their crossing in mid-September, timed to avoid the hurricane season just ending. It will take approximately 100 days (and up to 140 days) to cross the Atlantic and reach Florida.
MARCH to MAY 2006 - Cycle across North America
Once the team is back on land, they will quickly regain their cycling legs as they pedal 10,000 km across North America and return to Vancouver.
Colin Angus and pals traveled the 7,000 km length of the Amazon River in a raft - from the first trickles of melting snow in the Andes to the Atlantic Ocean. In five months, they crossed a desert, climbed mountains, shot rapids and ducked bullets, and 119 days after setting out from Lima on Sept. 13, they navigated the entire length of the river.
Based in Vancouver, Colin has spent the last twelve years pursuing a life of adventure. Colin sailed across the Pacific Ocean (much of it solo) as a teenager, organized the self-powered expedition down the Amazon, and most recently completed a descent of the 5,500 km Yenisey River through Mongolia and Siberia.
Colin has authored two books for Random House and co-produced two documentaries for National Geographic, one of which garnered awards at the Banff and Telluride Festivals of Mountain Films.
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