Between June and October 2015 Adventure Athlete Tarran Kent-Hume and teammate Olie Hunter Smart travelled the length of the Amazon River, 6,800km’s (4,300 Miles).
Beginning this expedition at the Mantaro River which turns into the Amazon River. This is the furthest and most distant source of the Amazon River.
They travelled 4,300 miles in under 5 months, beginning in the Andes of Peru hiking over the peaks and valleys sitting some 4,500 meters above sea level. They experience hot days and freezing nights with the temperature rising to over 44 degrees and dropping to a chilly minus 4 in the night.
En route they passed through the most dangerous part of South America called the RED ZONE, where over 70% of the worlds cocaine production comes from. This meant being confronted on the river with shotguns being pointed at them. Being able to interact with some of the native tribes including the Ashkaninka tribe. Being shot at by pirates and dealing with the constant threat of robbery as well as some scary 15ft waves as they approached the Atlantic Ocean.
As they passed through some dangerous areas on the river the Peruvian and Brazilian Navy and Marines would at times follow them in gunboats for safety. Sleeping on Sandbanks and in small communities they encountered all types of Amazonian animals including a close encounter with some crocodiles.
Tarran said, “ This is scary and very real, but what an incredible experience”.
For all the danger, they we’re taken in by the people of the river and encountered much kindness and friendliness as the river passed through Peru, Columbia and Brazil.
Travelling some 80km and 10 hours per day, the river went from a close small stream with the jungle in Peru to the huge Amazon expanse in Brazil where there is not a dot of land in sight, using GPS and maps as a guide.
The pair held Google Hangouts with classrooms from around the world talking about their challenges and experiences on the river with an aim to inspire many of their young followers to embrace life and follow their passion.
“In planning for my Amazon Expedition I knew getting access to clean drinking water was going to be a headache until I met Water-to-Go and this was just what I was looking for”, Tarran explains.
“The Waters along the Amazon River and tributary the Mantaro River are not clean enough to drink and with space and weight being a major concern, carrying a large pump style water filter seemed excessive. The water to go bottles are simple and easy to use. Kayaking along I’d simply dip the bottle into the water and start drinking, so simple. The fact that they not only have a great product but have an environmentally conscious outlook that helps to reduce the amount of plastic we use fits great with my personal values.”
The last 22 hours was spent in the kayak as they pushed to finish at the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean. Beginning at midnight and kayaking through the night, tying their kayaks to a mangrove tree for hours whilst they waited for the tide to turn, battling huge waves and string winds they eventually made it to the Atlantic on October 29th 2015. In the process Tarran Kent-Hume became the first Australian to travel the length of the Amazon River from its furthest and most distant source.