85 Year Old Rafts Across the Atlantic


PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten — An 85-year-old British sailor who dreamed of crossing the Atlantic on a raft as a young boy has completed the journey in 66 days with three friends.


The raft, named “An-Tiki” after Thor Heyerdahl’s famous Kon-Tiki raft, was loaded with food including oranges, avocados, potatoes, cabbages and a pumpkin. Once the store-bought bread was consumed, sailing master David Hildred began making it from scratch in a small oven.


The raft was built with four water supply pipes nearly 40 feet long, and 14 cross pipes.

Seven pipes held the crew’s fresh water supply.


Halfway across the Atlantic, Smith celebrated his 85th birthday with a chocolate cake that his doctor, Andrew Bainbridge, cooked on board.

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