Kayaker-adventurer Tyler Bradt is about to set sail for five years. Course unknown. With a revolving crew of artists and adventurers aboard the Wizard’s Eye, Tyler will explore life as it comes. And knowing Tyler, it’s going to be an adventure beyond anything we could dream up. Here he tell us about the adventure.
Adventure: Five years is a slow sail around the world. This is a big commitment! What do you hope to get out of it?
Tyler Bradt: For me this expedition is the true essence of adventure. Realizing one of my wildest dreams is everything I could ever hope to get out of it personally. I also hope that it will serve as inspiration for people to find their paths of adventure, become more globally enlightened, and simply have fun.
A: How did you pick your course? Are there places in particular that you are most eager to explore?
T.B.: This is the hardest part for people to grasp. We don’t have a course! The idea of this expedition is to let it take its own course. By having predetermined destinations and exact ideas of what we are going to do only limits us and what our experiences will be. The idea is to allow this journey to find its own flow, its own route, and what we do and where we do it will be determined by decisions we make in the right moment and not before. This will help keep the boat and crew safe and allow our explorations to be limitless.
A: Who is going with you?
T.B.: This as well will fall into place as the expedition goes along. I am very fortunate to have amazing friends with equally amazing talents both athletically and artistically. There will also be new friends made along the way who will join the expedition. For the Pacific crossing we will keep the team very small. This will allow our resources to last longer making it a safer trip. Onboard will be BASE jumping legend, Jordan Kilgore, a less known but equally talented surfer and boat captain Ryan Lambert, and myself. More people will join us in Tahiti.
A: How much of this is planned out and how much will be simply playing it by ear?
T.B.: I would say this trip is 25% planned, the rest we will simply play by ear, nose, tongue, eye, hand and maybe even some senses we don’t know about yet.
A: How are you going to deal with hurricane season?
T.B.: We will leave for the pacific crossing at the optimum time, March. Our goal will be to get to New Zealand before the next storm season hits in around November. We also have a boat hand built for treacherous ocean environments. We have a better chance of survival than most who have gone before us.
A: When will you start sailing?
T.B.: I will truly start sailing about a month from now. To be honest I don’t have much of a background at all in sailing but I have tremendous respect for the art, the ocean, and the role sailing has played in exploration of our planet. The idea of this expedition is to cross time tested means of exploration with new ones. Even I don’t know what the results will be, I guess that is the nature of exploration and adventure.
A: What’s going to be the most challenging part of living on the boat?
T.B.: I imagine the the most challenging part for me will be sea sickness and the mental strains of living in a confined space for many weeks at a time with no land in sight. This journey will quickly become as much internal as it is external.
A: What’s your attitude toward risk now, since breaking your back?
T.B.: Make good decisions.
A: Will your family come visit you on the voyage?
T.B.: My family is coming to see me off at the end of this month in Mexico. After that I hope they will come in from time to time to visit. This is one of the hardest parts of a prolonged expedition.
A: How’s the boat get its name?
T.B.: When I found the boat she was already named Wizard’s Eye. Due to maritime superstition and simply the fact that I think it is a very cool and unique name, I decided to keep it and name the expedition after her. The boat after all is the cornerstone of this entire thing. This expedition lives and dies by that boat, I’ll be doing my best to make sure she is always happy and in good hands.