Byline: Taylor Hill
NEWPORT BEACH — After a grueling 15 days at sea, Jack Shimko arrived at the Newport Pier Sept. 10 to finish his attempt at a 260-mile stand-up paddleboard challenge that was scheduled to include stops at each of the eight Channel Islands. The challenge became even more difficult as Shimko encountered wind gusts of 50 mph and some of the largest swells he had ever seen, making one 7-mile stretch feel like he had been paddling for 35 miles, he said.
The weather forced Shimko to skip a few small stretches of the course, but he is planning on going back to complete them this week, with the help of the 125-foot catamaran Cheyenne that worked as his support boat for the second half of the trip.
Shimko — paddling to raise money and awareness for cancer research — teamed up with the John Wayne Cancer Foundation and became a Team Duke member. The program was created to allow anyone to set their own goal — whether it is a 260-mile paddle or a 5K run — and work to raise money for cancer research in the process.
Races and an after party took place Sept. 10, on Shimko’s arrival, with activities including paddleboard and prone board races, music, food and an awards ceremony.
For more information, visit paddle2live.org.