Calif. Teen Completes Solo Voyage Across the Atlantic Ocean Just Months After Learning to Sail

Cal Currier, 16, told Today that his father, who is a transatlantic sailor, was quickly on board — but his mom "took a little bit more convincing"

A California teenager has successfully sailed solo across the Atlantic Ocean — all before his junior year of high school!

Cal Currier, 16, spent 28 days on a 30-foot sailboat as he traveled nearly 4,000 miles from Marion, Massachusetts, to Lagos, Portugal, according to Today.

As if that's not impressive enough, the teen only began taking sailing lessons in January, just months before he set sail on June 27, The Boston Globe reported.

"I started sailing with this goal in mind: I'm going to sail across the Atlantic solo," he told the newspaper.

Cal completed his mission on The Argo, a Tartan monohull sailboat built in 1976, which he purchased from famous sailmaker Sandy Van Zandt, according to the outlets.

The teen purchased the vessel using $12,000 he earned at a summer camp he started with his three brothers, as well as through sponsorships, per the Globe.

Van Zandt said Cal picked up on sailing quickly. "He was such a natural," he told the newspaper. "I didn't know he was just learning how to sail."

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The idea for the solo trip came to Cal while he was brainstorming ideas for how to spend the summer. "It was Thanksgiving break and I said, 'I don't know what I want to do this summer,' " he told ABC affiliate WCVB. "I'm getting older. I don't just want to veg around anymore."

The teen's father, who is a transatlantic sailor, was quickly on board with the concept. His mom, however, "took a little bit more convincing."

"After a couple long conversations and a couple long nights, we convinced her that it was safe to do," Cal recalled while speaking with Today.

Once on his journey, Cal only had intermittent satellite connection to connect his family throughout his journey, WCVB reported. Cal's father James said his family was checking his son's tracker "probably 20 times a day."

But the alone time gave the soon-to-be high school junior an opportunity to crack open some books.

"This was just a great chance for me to read," he told the outlet. "Get back in touch with reading and get back in touch with just sitting there and pondering the questions of life. I didn't actually answer any, but I read some Plato."

Although Cal that the journey wasn't "all that difficult" physically, it did take a toll on him mentally.

"The mental aspect is definitely the hardest part," he told Today, citing loneliness, boredom and sleep deprivation as "the greatest challenges that I had to deal with."

As for the biggest lesson he learned from the expedition, Cal told the outlet he walked away knowing "how important people are to me."

So for now, Cal will happily enjoy his hobby with others. "I don't think I'll do any large solo expeditions anymore," he said. "It's just more fun to be with people."

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