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I-40 bridge shutdown impacts paddlers trying to break world record

Updated: May. 18, 2021 at 6:26 AM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Check this out. A group of paddlers is trying to set the Guinness World Record for the fastest canoe trip down the Mississippi River.

They’ve been paddling 24/7 since leaving from Minnesota on May 4. Documenting their stops along the way.

The team leader Scott Miller attempted to break the record back in 2018 but was unsuccessful.

Right now, the team is six and a half hours ahead of the tentative world record pace.

But it has come with a few bumps in the river, like the I-40 bridge shutdown backing up barge traffic down the Mississippi last week.

”Over the last 24 hours they’ve been paddling through that neck of the woods they’ve had to deal with more barges than they usually would or at least closer together,” said Todd Foster, spokesperson for Mississippi Speed Record. “And canoeing next to a barge is not for the faint of heart. They kick off some really big waves and it can be quite dangerous.”

They paddled under the Memphis bridge this week. Luckily, they’ve made it through thanks to a support crew.

But they still have about 500 miles to go.

If they stay on pace, they expect to wrap up their roughly 2,300-mile journey Friday night.

We wanna wish the team the best of luck. We’re rooting for you.

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