PEI

P.E.I. man back home after attempting to sail solo around the world

A Summerside, P.E.I., man who set out to sail solo around the world is back home on the Island.

‘The whole idea behind the whole voyage was adventure and, boy, that really was adventure’

Alan Mulholland is shown on his boat, Wave Rover, in Charlottetown harbour early Saturday morning. (Alan Mulholland )

A Summerside, P.E.I., man who set out to sail solo around the world is back home on the Island.

Alan Mulholland sailed into Charlottetown harbour Saturday at 4 a.m. 

But he had to wait another six hours on his boat to get the OK from customs and public health before stepping on dry land.

"I used the time to get a little bit of sleep because I hadn't slept in about 48 hours," said Mulholland.

"I was on the boat for 33 days and that was the longest leg of the entire voyage. It's a very complicated passage from the Caribbean direct to the Maritimes, very complicated. Very few boats actually make that passage."

'You can't be angry or frustrated' 

Mulholland said his legs felt like lead when he first set foot on the dock. 


Alan Mulholland snapped this photo while on his voyage. (Alan Mulholland )

He had to cut his sail short in January after a wave flipped his 26-foot sailboat on to its side, which sent water rushing in. The wave damaged the boat and some essential equipment and left Mulholland with two cracked ribs. 

He's been in the Caribbean ever since getting his boat repaired and getting set for the month-long sail back to P.E.I. 

Despite the setback, Mulholland said he has no regrets.

"The whole idea behind the whole voyage was adventure and, boy, that really was adventure getting hit by that freak wave and then dealing with it," said Mulholland. 

"You can't be angry or frustrated because this was something that you want to do. You have to take the good with the bad."

'The decision was made for me'

Mulholland said he was devastated at first that he couldn't complete his voyage.

He said he considered giving it another try, but COVID-19 hit and closed many of the ports. That truly did put an end to any hopes of completing his two-year, around-the-world sailing adventure. 

Alan Mulholland says he plans to sell his boat, but would consider one more North Atlantic crossing if there is no buyer. (Alan Mulholland )

"The decision was made for me at that point," he said. 

Mulholland already has his next adventure planned.

He and his wife have purchased a five-acre property in Prince County. They plan to build a home, plant gardens and raise livestock. He plans to start that project in the next couple of weeks. 

Mulholland said he plans to put his boat, the Wave Rover, up for sale.

But he said if it doesn't sell, he might make one last North Atlantic crossing.

"There may be one more trip in it if it doesn't sell. I haven't told my wife yet about that," he said. "But if the boat sells, that's it."

More from CBC P.E.I.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Wayne Thibodeau

Prince Edward Island

Wayne Thibodeau is a reporter/editor with CBC Prince Edward Island. He has worked as a reporter, editor, photographer and video journalist in print, digital and TV for more than 20 years. He can be reached at Wayne.Thibodeau@CBC.ca

now