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7 Reasons You Should Not Kayak Across The Pacific Ocean

Posted on November 10, 2010 in Top Posts | 19 comments

If you are one of these hipsters who likes to engage in social networking via the likes of facebook and twitter, it is very likely that one, two or maybe all of your friends have posted a ‘funny’ piece of travel advice they have found on Google Maps. I say ‘funny’ in inverted commas because it is actually a very serious matter. The matter I refer to is the ‘joke’ that tells prospective travellers to make the journey from the USA to Japan via the Pacific Ocean in a kayak. How utterly irresponsible. There are many, many reasons why one should not do as Google Maps suggests, but to save my sanity (and your life) here are just seven.

7 Reasons You Should Not Kayak Across The Pacific Ocean

1.  Food. An average kayaker will travel at 5mph. Given that Google Maps says the distance – via Hawaii – between USA and Japan is 2,756 miles, it will take the adventurer just over 551 hours to make the journey. That’s a touch under 23 days. That’s 23 days worth of food you have to take with you. Now, assuming – as is very likely considering the departure point – that the traveller is American, that’s 89,537 calories. Or 92.7 Big Mac Meals. A kayak has storage for about 20 Big Mac Meals. You do the maths.

2.  Sharks. The good news is, that out of the 440 species of shark found on our planet, only 36 of them exist in the Pacific Ocean. (Approximately. I am sure others visit for a day now and then.) Unfortunately, within the 36 species is the Great White Shark. The Great White Shark accounts for 20% of worldwide shark attacks. And, just before you come back at me with the stat, ‘of the 108 unprovoked attacks within the Pacific Ocean in the 20th century, only five included kayakers,’ let me tell you that there has never, ever been a Great White Shark attack on a plane.

3.  Paddle. You may have heard of the phrase, ‘Up the creek without a paddle’. For those of you who haven’t, it basically means you are in a very serious situation and you haven’t got a bloody clue how you are going to get out of it. If you drop your paddle between the USA and Japan, you can change the word ‘creek’ for ‘Pacific’ but you can’t change the meaning.

4.  Iodine. The average human will die if they go for more than three days without water. Luckily, in the Pacific Ocean you will find loads of it. Unluckily, if you drink too much of it, you will also die. That’s because it’s saltwater. If you are going to survive you are going to have to desalinate the seawater. You can do this by either attaching a desalination plant to your kayak – in which case you’ll sink before you even leave the beach – or you can use iodine. You will have to leave ten Big Mac Meals behind, but to survive it is probably worth it. The problem comes when you try and desalinate your beaker of water. You’re in a kayak. On the ocean. It’s bumpy. You have your paddle in one hand, the iodine in the other and the beaker between your legs. Now, I’ve never tried desalinating my penile appendage, but if I did, the middle of the Pacific Ocean, in a kayak, is a place where I know I couldn’t possibly fail. Unless…

5.  A Sudden Wave hits the kayak. In which case the iodine might go overboard and desalinate the whole of the Ocean. You are going to murder many, many saltwater fish. And you’re heading to Japan. A country that’s built on fish (one in ten fish is eaten there). They’re not going to greet you warmly are they?

6.  Tankers. Generally these are big ships who have very little interest in small-fry like you in your kayak. Mainly because they are always on auto-pilot while the captain has a snooze. If you just happen to be having a snooze at the same time, you are going to get crushed. And, just a warning, if you do survive, there is no point in shouting ‘Tanker!’ at them and waving your fist, if you do, you’ll miss the giant squid that’s about to squirt you with ink.

7.  Jovan Pestoric Will Kiss You. In doing my research for this post – I came across the following Yahoo! Answers page where Lovely had asked if it was possible to kayak across the Pacific Ocean. There were only a few answers. One gave Lovely some valuable advice and advised it was not possible. They then said ‘Have fun!’. Then Javon Pestoric announced, ‘yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! omg if u do it ill kiss u’. I have no idea who Jovan is and, if watching people kayak over the Pacific Ocean is his kind of fetish, I don’t think I want to know either.

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  1. Hahahaha loved this

  2. The caloric and Big Mac math is wrong in #1. According to the numbers presented, a Big Mac Meal has less than one calorie; I did the math.

    While the kayak directions are obviously a joke, it reminds me of ignorant people who tried walking on busy highways just because Google Maps gave directions. Common sense is required whenever processing any information or directions.

    What’s next, people complaining that Google didn’t state they need a DL, registration, and insurance when giving driving directions–let alone instructions to get fuel, use the restroom, and find lodging on long trips?

  3. Ok, haha. At first I was thinking, “this cant be serious, someone really has a stick up their butt!” and then I kept reading. I am glad you find humor in the joke!

  4. this was really stupid and i think that this article is not worth anyones time. revise!

  5. What would you like me to revise for Penny? (Please don’t say a French oral examination).

  6. err i think your math with the mcdonalds joke is wrong. you would only need like 100 maybe, not 200000.

  7. Erm, yes. Well spotted.

  8. You’d be correct Clark. Thanks for pointing that out.

  9. I’ll bet this was a funny article but your introductory paragraph lost me when you said “perspective travellers.” If you’re going to pretend to sound like a perturbed nerd, you should have said “prospective,” oh well.

  10. I can’t argue with that, I’m an idiot.

  11. umm instead of iodine, you could simply bring a solar still.

  12. Or instead of a solar still, you could take a tap. I have one in my kitchen and it seems to hold a limitless supply of fresh water. It’s also smaller and more portable than a solar still.

  13. I’m that Lovely from Yahoo!Answers.. I just think it’s hilarious that I found this article ^_^ I feel a little special.
    FYI, I never attempted to kayak across the Pacific. No one wanted to join me…

  14. lav it great article :):)

  15. Why go wrong with a kayak? After all, it all depends on your perspective. 😀 Of course, this guarantees a lot of adventures.

  16. Great article. I’d just like to add that this is actually all very easy to do. I have my own import business. I kayak Katanas to the US and sell them at at 15% profit. which comes out to $400 bucks every two months. My kayak only cost $300, so you do the math. Most businesses take 2 years to become profitable. No one copy my model!

  17. I would do it. with outriggers of course!

  18. Granted it wasn’t across teh whole pacific ocean, but a guy named ed kayaked from San Diego to Maui in 1987. That was before gps even.


  19. What the fun is this rant all about… sir this is a Wendy’s

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