In the summer of 1987 Ed Gillet achieved what no person has accomplished before or since, a solo crossing from California to Hawaii by kayak. Gillet, at the age of 36 an accomplished sailor and paddler, navigated by sextant and always knew his position within a few miles. Still, Gillet underestimated the abuse his body would take from the relentless, pounding, swells of the Pacific, and early into his voyage he was covered with salt water sores and found that he could find no comfortable position for sitting or sleeping. Along the way he endured a broken rudder, among other calamities, but at last reached Maui on his 63rd day at sea, four days after his food had run out. Dave Shively brings Gillet’s remarkable story to life in this gripping narrative, based on exclusive access to Gillet’s logs as well as interviews with the legendary paddler himself.
Dave Shively is an award-winning journalist who serves as the Content Director for TEN: The Enthusiast Network’s Paddlesports Group. As the longtime managing editor of Canoe & Kayak and senior editor of SUP magazine, Shively established a respected voice in the sport by grounding unique profiles and travel narratives in paddling experiences documented from Nunavut to New Orleans. The Colorado-bred, California-based writer won a 2017 Folio Eddie Award for ‘Healing Waters’ (Canoe & Kayak, Winter 2016), a series of veteran profiles exploring PTSD and the transformative power of the outdoors.