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'I'm upside down right now': Local coach rowing Atlantic says spirits high despite capsizing

Updated: Jul. 5, 2018 at 6:46 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Bryce Carlson is currently 280 miles out to sea from where he started one week ago. He's already faced some problems but says he's still on track to finish sometime in August.

Communicating with FOX19 through a satellite phone in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, he was in good spirits this Fourth of July holiday.

"I wake up in the morning, make a cup of coffee, do some work with my hands, and then I get to work. I start rowing. I take some breaks throughout the day to eat and rest if I need to," he said.

Carlson is a week into his nearly two-month journey rowing -- alone -- across the Atlantic Ocean.

"Everything is going really well. I've had some setbacks from the capsize and losing the laptop isn't good and a few other things but on the whole everything is going well," he said.

That's right -- only a few days into his row, Carlson's boat, Lucille, rolled over in the ocean before righting itself.

"I remember thinking, I'm upside down right now," he said.

Carlson's boat is made to roll if the waves get too high. He estimates the waves were 10 feet high when he was woken in the middle of the night to water coming inside the airtight cabin. Carlson had a few air vents opened.

"By the time the boat had righted itself, you know I had probably a couple of gallons of water, which definitely didn't help with the dampness," he said.

Despite rowing for as long as 12 hours a day, Carlson doesn't sleep for long.

"I don't really sleep through the night, I'm more or less kind of napping, not even really napping. I'm sleeping but remotely conscious -- it's kind of a weird feeling I've never experienced before," he said.

Carlson is enjoying various forms of sea life to entertain him -- so far, whales are his favorite.

"You know, the second I see a whale I get ridiculously excited so there's no deep thinking on that one," he said.

Carlson says it's pretty cold where he is -- 41 degrees on Wednesday -- and the moisture inside the cabin only makes it worse. But he says this is the journey of a lifetime and he looks forward to reaching southern England later this summer.

Before he departed, Carlson sat down for the Rob Williams Anytime podcast to discuss his apprehensions -- you can hear that full conversation below:

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