09 May 2008

Point Nemo

I was recently told that the halfway point of the Pacific Cup is the furthest point from land in the world. Since the race is 2070 nautical miles, I would then assume that 1035 nautical miles is the furthest you can possibly be from land. I even told somebody this. Then I thought about it and decided that it might make sense to do some research.

And I found Point Nemo, more accurately known as the oceanic pole of inaccessibility. This remote part of the South Pacific Ocean is 1451 nautical miles from the nearest land (Ducie Island, Motu Nui and Maher Island). That is, of course, 416 nm farther from land than I will be.

That's some good stuff of course but I want to know how far from Point Nemo I'm going to get up there in the North Pacific. Enter Google Earth. It turns out I'll be nowhere near the Oceanic Pole of Inaccessibility...in fact, I will be 4,445 nm from Point Nemo.

Now, my next exercise using Google Earth is to estimate how far from land I was on my Atlantic crossing (note: that time I crossed the ENTIRE ocean, not just a third of it). I don't have our track with me but from my memory of the course and the ruler tool in Google Earth, I don't think we were ever more than 5-600 miles from land so at least I'm topping that. I'm going to christen the halfway point, Point EVK4. Maybe I'll drop a flag overboard there to mark the spot.

For reference, Point Nemo is at 48°52.6′S, 123°23.6′W. Please mark this on your GPS.


Tillerman said...


Any idea how far you can get from the nearest Dunkin' Donuts and still be in The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations? That's a real point of inaccessibility.

Team Gherkin said...

I bet there's a Macdonalds there by now, bugger it! lol

Enjoy those wide open spaces.

Mal :)

Carol Anne said...

What's likely there is NOT a MacDonald's. What's totally everywhere nowadays is a Starbuck's.

tillerman said...

I have to side with Mal on this one. According to Wikipedia (which is never wrong) Starbucks has 15,011 stores in 44 countries; McDonalds has over 31,00 restaurants in 119 countries. Not even close.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the nearest land on our
route across the Atlantic was never
more than 3 miles .... straight down!

Former Shipmate

Zen said...

Isn't that special

ohh where is the picture of this perfect boat?

Matt Chagnon said...

Nice, I can relate.