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Surfing News: Surfer Chris Bertish to Attempt First-Ever SUP Crossing of the Atlantic

by Cristina Costea

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Chris Bertish, a big wave surfer from South Africa, is planning to do something that has never been done before: a stand up paddling crossing of the Atlantic Ocean. 

Stand up paddling is a style of surfing where the rider stands on their board and uses a paddle to propel themselves and the board through the water. The sport originated in Hawaii and it is one of the fastest-growing water sports in the U.S. You can try SUP pretty much on any type of water, and it’s also great for beginner surfers!

But there is one surfer out there who plans to take this burgeoning sport to new heights. Chris Bertish is a South African watersport enthusiast, big wave surfer and SUP lover. He won the Mavericks Big Wave International surfing event; he holds the World Record for the South African Open Ocean SUP 24-hour Distance and is a sought after motivational speaker and a TEDx guest speaker.

But what makes Chris so special are not all of his previous accomplishments in the world of surfing, it is what he plans to do at the end of 2016. Chris Bertish wants to become the first surfer in the world to cross the Atlantic Ocean standing up on his custom paddle board. Considering his motto, Dream it, See it, Believe it, Achieve it, we’re quite certain he will accomplish this incredible feat.

Bertish has been preparing for the solo SUP crossing of the Atlantic for five years and one of the hardest things he had to do for it was to quit big wave surfing. But this attempt is all for a good cause, as all the money and media attention will be directed to charity. All the funds he will collect will go to Operation Smile (a charity that provides cleft lip and palate surgeries), the Signature of Hope Trust (to build schools in some of the poorest regions of Africa), and the Lunchbox Fund (a charity that helps feed and educate children).

So, what is going to happen if he is successful in doing the SUP trans-Atlantic crossing? Well, this means he would have paddled around 28 miles (45 km) a day for a whopping 120 days. The journey will start in Morocco and end in Florida; and if he manages to cross the Atlantic Ocean on his paddle board, he will have traveled a total of 4,500 miles (7,500 km). BookSurfCamps.com wishes him all the best and we’ll let you know how his journey goes.


Go on a surf camp and practice one of the world’s fastest growing and most fun sports, stand up paddle boarding!

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