Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Beginning in A.D. 722, Sado Island served a prison island as it lies 40 km away from the Japanese west coast in the Sea of Japan.

Significantly further from the mainland that Alcatraz or Robben Island, the 40 km was an effective lifelong sentence of banishment on the island with thick, lush forests and mountains.

But Ocean Navi started escorting relay teams across the Sado Channel a few years ago. Yesterday, another relay completed the crossing between Sado Island and Niigata on the mainland. The 9-member Ocean Navi team started a 2:19 am and finished at 3:59 pm on a 13 hour 40 minute crossing in the 18ºC (64ºF) relatively calm water.

Hiroko Kasahara, Noriko Kimura, Kumiko Koizumi, Maki Sakamoto, Daisuke Tanaka, Mayumi Doi, Rei Yamazaki, Motoko Honma, and Masayuki Moriya made the crossing.

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