Remember those nutty, ulta-marathon American paddlers, the ones who raced 340 miles across Missouri last summer in a day and half? Well, recently, four of them (David Kelly, Carter Johnson, Mike Scales, and West Hansen) went down to Peru and raced in the Great Amazon Raft Race. For this race you have to build a balsa wood raft on the first day and then race it down the Amazon over the course of the next 3 days. The length of the race is uncertain, local lore has it at 130 miles and West Hansen, of the winning Easy Living team, indicated numerous GPS mileage measurements that put the race more in the 84 mile range. Danged Peruvians! Even developing nations are on the SI. 84 miles is ~130 kilometers, perhaps that's the issue.
One imagines that it's a bit like Huck Finn, but with piranhas (and SI units of measurement).
The Americans won the race over the locally favored Peruvian team. But finishing in an up note, les americanos shared the prize money with all the Peruvian teams who raced in the event. That's how we get the world to love us again - one river raft race at a time!
Image: Team Easy Living at the finish, Iquitos Times
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iquitostimes amazon race wrap-up