‘Dateline NBC’ will feature local adventurers

Staff reportApril 13, 2014 

The OAR Northwest team shortly after their April 2013 rescue during a trans-Atlantic crossing. The team was comprised of Adam Kreek, from left, Jordan Hanssen, Patrick Fleming and Markus Pukonen.

COURTESY OF ERINN J. HALE

Local adventurers Jordan Hanssen and Pat Fleming will appear on “Dateline NBC” on Sunday (April 13) during a one-hour special featuring their 2013 attempt to row across the Atlantic Ocean.

Hanssen and Fleming, both University of Puget Sound graduates, were part of a four-man crew that attempted to row from Africa to Miami. Canadians Adam Kreek and Markus Pukonen were the other members of the crew.

Their trans-Atlantic trip was cut short when the team’s 29-foot rowboat capsized 72 days into their journey. Slightly more than 400 miles north of Puerto Rico, a wave hit their craft and sent the crew scrambling to get into a life raft. The team had logged 2,726 nautical miles and was 843 miles shy of Miami when the wave hit.

The team was eventually rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard and a Puerto Rican ship.

Hanssen was part of another group, all UPS graduates, who rowed in a race from New York to England in 2006, earning a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. That trip, from New York Harbor to Bishop’s Rock off the English coast, was won in 68 days, 23 hours and 18 minutes.

Hanssen wrote a book, “Rowing into the Son” (The Mountaineers, 2012, $18.95), about the 2006 crossing. He’s making appearances in Wenatchee on Friday and Leavenworth on Saturday. He spoke at UPS on April 2.

The “Dateline NBC” episode is scheduled to air at 7 p.m. on NBC.

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