Adventurer making waves on voyage
What ever happened to Ken-ichi Horie, who departed Hawaii about a month ago for Japan on a wave-powered boat?
Answer: Horie is believed to be almost halfway through his voyage. According to Horie, he completed a third of his voyage on April 10 and had crossed the international date line. "Things are running as planned since starting my voyage in Hawaii," he wrote in a diary entry. The 69-year-old sailor has been writing daily entries of his voyage available on www2.suntory-mermaid2.com.
He is determined to set a world record of sailing the greatest distance in the wave-powered boat, Suntory Mermaid II. The voyage from Hawaii to Japan is 3,780 nautical miles. In his entries, Horie has shared with readers his observations of wave conditions, the environment and eating perishable and microwave foods.
On March 27 he wrote, "Just before sunset a young albatross came and took a break. It rested its wings until morning. Watching the sunset while drinking a beer is terrific."
A few days after he departed Hawaii, he was able to talk with people for the first time during his voyage via ham radio.
Earlier this week, Horie was able to receive medium-wave broadcasting from Japan. "I can clearly receive nongovernment broadcasting from Nagoya and Tokyo, from this day onwards I can hear baseball night games," he said.
Horie is expected to arrive in Japan at the end of May. His boat uses a mechanism that converts wave energy to forward propulsion. Horie wrote yesterday that he was sailing smoothly and the weather was clear.
This update was written by Star-Bulletin reporter Rosemarie Bernardo.
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