Endurance Paddleboarder Crossing the Pacific Ocean Shares His Wild Adventure

In a hit song, the Proclaimers promised to walk 500 miles, while Vanessa Carlton vowed to walk 1,000 miles. But there is one adventurer who went further. Unlike a fictional song, Antonio de la Rosa traveled over 2,500 miles across the ocean.

A selfie of Antonio de la Rosa.
Source: Facebook

His journey was not just scary, long, and exhausting, but full of challenges, difficulties, and some terrible views. One of these sights was so devastating that it made de la Rosa promise to correct its situation if he successfully finished his adventure.

The Story of an Endurance Athlete

Antonio de la Rosa is a professional endurance athlete who participates in numerous endurance competitions. De la Rosa specializes in paddleboarding. His achievements in paddleboarding adventures include crossing the Atlantic back in 2014. But this was not enough for him. Antonio was craving something bigger.

A photo of Antonio de la Rosa.
Source: Facebook

So in 2019, Antonio started his other big adventure to cross the Pacific Ocean. With nothing but his paddleboard, de la Rosa crossed over 4,000 km in 76 days. This way, he became the first man to cross this ocean standing on a paddleboard. The starting point was San Francisco, CA, and he paddled until he reached Honolulu, Hawaii.

Bringing the Right Equipment

Although he brought nothing besides his paddleboard, Antonio did not settle for any random craft. He had a lengthy custom-made vessel that was able to endure violent currents. Also, his boat featured some storage space for keeping necessary survival supplies.

Antonio de la Rosa checks out his gear before setting out.
Source: Facebook

Indeed, Antonio’s paddleboard did not have an engine, but it had other advanced specs such as lighting systems, solar panels, and a top-notch GPS radio. The specially designed boat was heavy compared to any other similar vessel. The vessel was 7 meters long and weighed over 680kg. This was its final weight when Antonio loaded all of its supplies on board.

Troubles While Making History

While paddling, Antonio witnessed various challenges, including poor nutrition, crazy currents, and Hurricane Flossie. The hurricane hit Antonio’s way in August, while he was only halfway to reaching his destination. The heavy storm forced the paddleboarder to stop and hide in his vessel till things became clearer and more stable.

Antonio de la Rosa sets out to ride his paddleboard.
Source: Facebook

But seeing plastic waste in different ocean parts was specifically painful to Antonio’s eyes. He spotted plastic bottles, the remains of fishing nets, and many types of plastic garbage. This makes the oceans look less attractive and negatively affects numerous quality marine life.

Reaching the Grounds of Honolulu and Doing the Right Thing

When Antonio started his journey, he was almost 50 years old. He celebrated his 50th birthday in the ocean with one cookie. Throughout his adventure, he lost nearly 25 pounds. Once he reached the dock in Honolulu, he kissed the ground. This was his first time on the ground in more than 70 days. Also, it was his first interaction with humans in a long time.

Antonio de la Rosa shows the plastic waste he made on his trip.
Source: Facebook

Deep down, Antonio was saddened by the sight of plastic waste in the ocean, so he wanted to draw some attention to this serious problem. This made him bring all his plastic waste to the ground instead of throwing it into the water. Then he made sure that this plastic waste ended up in recycling bins. By doing so, Antonio wanted to set an example for everyone visiting the ocean.