Adventure book: Tales from the crossing

By Amy Middleton 13 July 2009
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The story’s out about the extraordinary adventure of a couple of seemingly ordinary Sydney lads.

Australian Geographic Society’s 2008 Young Adventurer of the Year, James Castrission, has released a novel detailing what he and his mate and fellow award-winner, Justin Jones, got up to in the summer of last year. It’s a tale of setting goals and overcoming obstacles that get in your way.

Sound like something you can relate to? Well, depending on what you do, chances are the obstacles these boys faced will prove less than familiar…

For 62 days straight that summer, James and Justin were fending off sharks, suffering intense sunburn, and holding onto their food-deprived stomachs as the kayak that became their only form of shelter was flung over eight-metre high waves.

That was a day in the life of our Society-sponsored paddlers as they challenged the treacherous Tasman on their world-first attempt to kayak from their home country of Australia to the shores of New Zealand.

A novel of an idea – Australians first to kayak the Tasman

Both in their mid-twenties, the boys’ journey of more than 3300 kilometres is now an adventure novel about the human thirst for conquest, how good it feels to have your best mate by your side in times of real trouble (when a shark is attacking your kayak, for example), and how to ignore the voices of those who tell you your plans are probably insurmountable.

For a bit of action and inspiration, grab a copy online at their website, and find out why the ambitious duo were named Young Adventurers of the Year at last year’s AG Society Awards.

Read morefrom Australian Geographic about Justin and James.