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Pedal voyager crosses Pacific

Jan 1, 2003

An attempt at the first-ever human-powered circumnavigation is approximately half complete now that the pedal-powered vessel Moksha is safe in Tarawa, a small island in the Kiribati group (formerly known as the Gilbert Islands) of the South Pacific.

The 26-foot craft, powered by either one or two operators at the foot pedals, started its circumnavigation in July 1994 in London. Britons Jason Lewis and Steve Smith bicycled from the U.K. after being ferried across the Channel, through France and across Spain and Portugal to the Algarve. They joined the vessel and pedaled to Funchal, Gran Canaria, and then across the Atlantic to Turks and Caicos, ultimately arriving in Miami.

Moksha was then trucked across the U.S. as its owners, one on bicycle and the other on in-line skates, sweated across the continent. In Sept. 1998, the pair reboarded Moksha and pedaled to Hilo, Hawaii, from San Francisco, a 2,200-mile, 54-day voyage. After a break, only one of the adventurers resumed the voyage; Lewis pedaled the boat solo from Kona, Hawaii, to Tarawa in 73 days, arriving in May 1999.

Pedal for the Planet, as the expedition is called, is funded entirely by donations of equipment and money. For example, the vessel is equipped with a Pitchometer custom propeller, R-300 Realword Computer "ruggedized" laptop, A C.A.R.D. anti-collision radar detector from Survival Safety Engineering, a PUR desalinator pump, ICOM radios, and a Trimble Galaxy Inmarsat C.

Follow the progress of Pedal for the Planet, which will resume its journey from Tarawa to Australia in April 2000, by web site: www.goals.com, or call 800-943-0114.