Ocean Rowing Roundup for November

Since our last roundup, one soloist has restarted his journey and another has begun rowing across the Atlantic.

This is one of the quietest times of year on the world’s oceans, but hurricane season in the Atlantic is ending. As we move into slightly calmer weather, more rowers will take to the water. This includes those in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. The race starts on Dec. 12.

Louis Margot (CH): Margot is making a second attempt at his Atlantic crossing. He first started on Oct. 9 but had to abandon his attempt after five days because of bad weather, communication breakdowns, and seasickness. He restarted from Portimao, Portugal on Nov. 6 bound for Columbia. On the way, he will stop in the Canary Islands.

Louis Margot smiles and takes a selfie a few days into his Atlantic crossing.

Louis Margot. Photo: Human Impulse/Facebook


Building momentum

So far, the second attempt is going far better. In 10 days, he has covered 450km. “My peace grows with every paddle,” he remarked on social media.

The winds have been in his favor, and he is now out of the busier shipping channels and able to pick up the pace. The biggest difficulty has been sleeping. He has struggled to get more than a few hours a night and often ends up rowing longer than he anticipated.

Margot’s row forms part of a much longer journey. He is attempting a human-powered world circumnavigation in five stages. Three are cycling and two are rowing. Friends may join him for parts of the cycling, but the rowing will remain solo.

He started on Sept. 3 in Switzerland and pedaled 2,300km in 25 days to Portugal. In a few months, once he reaches Columbia, he will cycle north to Monterey, California. From there, he begins his second rowing leg, across the Pacific Ocean.

Another soloist

Piotr Pawelec (PL): Pawelec is our second soloist attempting the Atlantic. He also started from Portimao, Portugal on Nov. 6. He hopes to finish in Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe. Like Margot, he plans a pitstop in the Canary Islands.

So far, he has covered just over 350km. Since setting off, he has not provided any updates, but you can monitor his progress via his tracker.

His idea began in the fall of 2022. He had heard of another Polish rower, Romuald Koperski, who hand-built a boat, and then crossed the Atlantic. Pawelec liked this plan, which added an extra element to rowing.

Unfortunately, he had no idea how to construct a boat. He contacted a shipbuilder, who became involved, and drew up some plans. Over the next few months, Pawelec and his accomplice built his boat. Now his crossing is finally underway.

Rebecca McPhee

Rebecca McPhee is a freelance writer for ExplorersWeb.

Rebecca has been writing about open water sports, adventure travel, and marine science for three years. Prior to that, Rebecca worked as an Editorial Assistant at Taylor and Francis, and a Wildlife Officer for ORCA.

Based in the UK Rebecca is a science teacher and volunteers for a number of marine charities. She enjoys open water swimming, hiking, diving, and traveling.