Days 10 and 11 – walk, swim, walk

10 08 2010

So I was awoken again at 5 am for a full day of walking.
The walk was slow going and I was really uncomfortable carrying my kite, my backpack and my huge board.

The 2 river crossings were relatively uneventful, but they did have potential for getting hooked up in the mangroves. I did look twice at the first crossing early this morning as memories of shark attack statistics were playing back in my head.
Early morning, dirty brown water and river mouths are all risk factors but in the end I just got on with it and put the thought out of my head.

Progress at the end of today was stopped dead in the tracks because of high tide and no way around the mangroves.

I did consider putting up my kite to try and kite over the mangroves, but the words of wisdom, “start early and camp early” were ringing in my head.

Some local fisherman hosted me in their basic hut on the beach, next to a river and beautiful sunset.

It was a perfect way to end the day swinging in my hammock as the fishermen roasted their freshly caught fish over an open fire.

The fishermen were suitably impressed with the Hennessy hammock I strung up next to their more basic and heavy versions.

After a good nights sleep I awoke early to finished off the journey I started yesterday and arrived at the Rio Sao Francisco river.
Today’s excitement was crossing the only way possible – by swimming.
I walked up the river a bit and parked myself next to some fishermen, contemplated my options, and for almost an hour I studied the river and its flow patterns. The outgoing flow across the 800m wide river was moving pretty quick to start with, but as the tide changed and started to come in I sensed my opportunity. The outgoing debris floating out to sea suddenly stopped moving, so I packed everything up, strapped the kite to the board and put the backpack on my back.
Thankfully breaststroke is one of my favorite swimming stokes, because for the next half hour a one arm version of it was put into action with the board out front. I’m sure swimming that river raised a few eyebrows from the locals but I got across!
The swim was timed perfectly and I landed exactly where I wanted to be.
That wasn’t the end of the adventure as I followed up the swim with a 17km walk to Pointal do Peba.
Finally thirst got the better of me and the half liter of water in Peba I had never tasted so good.
My back and shoulders ache, and my body is pretty worn down after today, but I’m glad with how much progress I made, even if none of it was kiting.

It’s windy right now and the forecast shows wind for tomorrow, so I plan to try and finish up in Marceo.

Right now however, its time to rest this tired body of mine.




8 responses

10 08 2010
Laura Adams

Good luck Louis!

10 08 2010

well done louis, been reading your posts and i am amazed at what you are attempting. the river crossing was insane, keep it up!

10 08 2010

Awesome stuff Louis. Be safe Bro.

10 08 2010
Ryan Jameson

Best of luck, Louis! Good to see that you’ve decided to press on.

11 08 2010
Roberto (Adrianno Friend)

Well done Louis. The worst stage is coming to an end. Good Luck.

11 08 2010
Ross Hunter

Boa tarde

Looking Good!
Look after yourself and enjoy the abundant sunshine 🙂

12 08 2010
Boris Terzic

I can’t even imagine what walking through mangroves is like.

Good luck.

12 08 2010
David - Aracaju

Arriving in Maceio, Louis.
Very cool.

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