Berlin, 01. September 2012
No wind, no flow and no Titty Twister like in the 46rom Dusk till Dawn movie starring George Clooney. Instead, the “Blue Moon” threw a beautiful, ghostly light on Berlin’s waterways, on which Naish Team rider Christian Hahn paddled nonstop for 12 hours on the night of September 1st. The 80-km-long odyssey that led through and around part of Berlin began with weeks of preparation and test runs in the Berlin district of Heiligensee on the River Havel.
The Stand Up Paddle Equipment was a Naish Glide Javelin MC14, probably the lightest series SUP board on the market, 6 liters of water, carbohydrate bars and gels, 4 lamps, plus an iPhone to navigate … The lighting was the key for the safety and orientation on board.
“Even though the Berlin River Havel is almost deserted at night, you have to find the right way past marker buoys and fish traps, otherwise there may be an unexpected crash,” said the 39-year-old Christian Hahn. But not only the man-made obstacles required increased attention. Due to the early Autumn season, the water was partly covered with meter-high walls of fog, which meant that the velocity had to be drastically reduced in order to retain the orientation. “At times I had problems seeing the tip of my board. At that point even the headlamp didn’t help,” Hahn said.
Despite all of the high-tech equipment on board, it couldn’t be avoided that Christian Hahn took a wrong turn at a branch and paddled in the wrong direction for several kilometers. “I owe it to countless persistent cell phone calls by my sister, which I ignored at first, that I didn’t paddle in the wrong direction even longer.” Christian Hahn’s sister, Corinne, was one of many in the night from Saturday to Sunday who followed Christians SUP tour through Berlin’s night live on the internet.
When asked why one undergoes such a 80-km SUP torture, Christian responds calmly but still visibly exhausted: “Such a tour is not a race in which one goes to the limits of physical feasibility. If it had been too much, I could have canceled at any time. My vital signs and coordinates were monitored all the time. The cramps in the hand and forearm, which plagued me from kilometer 55, are almost forgotten. Rather, it is the images of the experience that you have internalized and from which one can draw in everyday life. In particular the sun rising and setting, countless shooting stars and the beavers which escorted me on my way through the Berlin night.”
It took Christian Hahn 11:47:34 hours to paddle the 80-km-run, on which he burned 5,703 calories.