Trans Tasman Solo Kayak attempt underway
Richard Barnes set off on 15 November in an attempt to paddle his purpose-built kayak, Blue Moon, from Sydney Harbour across the Tasman Sea to New Zealand. His goal is to be the first person to complete the journey solo and unsupported, and without making landfall on the way.
Early in August Richard took the time out between his job and his expedition preparation to answer some questions put to him by SALT Magazine about his quest.
Richard: Well, I’m coming up to 60 years old. If all goes according to plan I’ll have my 60th birthday alone in the middle of the Tasman Sea. I am a civil engineer by profession. I got introduced to paddling through Venturers within the Scouting movement. I started paddling white water, then tried canoe polo and then got serious about marathons and did my first Hawkesbury Classic in 1981. I’m down to do my 40th HCC this year. In 2014 I did the Yukon 1,000, paddling a double with the legendary Buzz Powell. I’m a member of the Sydney University Canoe Club and we’ve done white water paddling in New Zealand, Nepal, Ecuador and Chile. Sea kayaking came later – a little at first then a sampling in Patagonia and the Antarctic. In 2007. I paddled a Mirage 580 around Tasmania with my very good friend Phil Newman paddling his Greenland kayak …