EXPEDITION: Cuba to Florida
PADDLER: Ben Friberg
Ben Friberg’s mission was one of endurance. The Tennessean burned 9,800 calories on his record-setting 111-mile, 28-hour, six -minute paddle from Cuba to Key West, Florida. Besides the physical feat-which included paddling in the pitch black and dry heaving due to seasickness-Friberg also had to plan the logistics of launching from the isolated island nation, from special permits to hiring a boat captain to studying the weather patterns of the notoriously unpredictable stretch of water. After all the hardships, he found success and became the first person to make the journey by SUP.