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Benoit Lecomte is First to Attempt Pacific Ocean Swim

Benoit Lecomte’s current position in the Pacific

Benoit Lecomte is swimming 8,800 kilometres across the Pacific Ocean at age 51. He’s the first person to attempt to swim across the Pacific and it comes 20 years after his swim across the Atlantic.

As of Aug. 17, the French athlete has made it 1,000 kilometres across and swims for about eight hours a day.

You can follow his swim on an interactive map here, which also shows the Kuroshio Current that Lecomte is using to assist his swimn.

The Kuroshio Current or Black Tide is a north-flowing ocean current on the west side of the North Pacific Ocean similar to the Gulf Stream in the North Atlantic. Like the Gulf Stream, it is a strong western boundary current.

To date, he’s swimming at about 15 km/day on his journey from Japan to the U.S.A. Over the first 68 days of his trip, Lecomte has dealt with big waves, cold conditions and possible typhons.

Some waves have been 20 metres high, which forced the support team to pull him out of the water. And he’s had a few days when sharks and jellyfish pass by.

In 1998, Lecomte took 73 days to swim from Hyannis, U.S.A, to Quiberon, France across the Atlantic. He spent eight hours swimming each day in sessions of about two to four hours in length.

Lecomte is using GPS to find his previous day’s end points to start again. We’ll have more updates from his swim throughout the year.