Coxless Crew become first all-female team to row Pacific after nine-month journey

The first all-female team and four-person boat to row the Pacific have completed their epic journey after nine months at sea.

The Coxless Crew rowed more than 9,200 miles from San Francisco to Australia, departing under the Golden Gate Bridge in their pink 29ft boat Doris in April.

Laura Penhaul, Natalia Cohen, Emma Mitchell and Meg Dyos were greeted by families and friends at the Marlin Marina in Cairns on Monday.

They hugged each other before joining hands and taking their first unsteady steps onto solid ground for more than three months.

The journey, split into three legs, was completed in its entirety by three of the crew - Ms Penhaul, 31, Ms Cohen, 40, both from London, and Ms Mitchell, 30, from Marlow in Buckinghamshire.

Isabel Burnham, 31, from Saffron Walden near Cambridge, completed the crew for the first leg; Lizanne van Vuuren, 27, a South African who grew up in Newbury, took over for the second stage, while Ms Dyos, 25, from London, manned the oars for the final section.

Sitting down for a beer, the women were all grins as they described their expedition and arrival as "an overwhelming experience".

Writing on their blog on Sunday they said: "It has been an exhausting and emotional few days as we make our approach to land.

The crew at sea during their 9,200-mile journey. Credit: @coxlesscrew/Twitter

"The last 8,500 nautical miles don't matter anymore, it is all about these last 20. It's fair to say that with physical exhaustion, sleep deprivation and a lack of savoury food we are being tested to our limits. However this is where we draw on our spirit, row hard, row strong, row together."

Despite taking three months longer than planned, the expedition set two world records, the women becoming the first all-female team and the first team of four to row the Pacific.

During their journey, the rowers had to contend with a battering from a tropical storm, waves the size of houses and the heart-stopping approach of a humpback whale that surfaced just yards away.

While on the waves they rowed continuously as pairs in two-hour shifts, sleeping 90 minutes at a time. Each consumed 5,000 calories a day, devouring freeze-dried meals with a side of protein bars, chocolate, fruit or nuts, washed down with desalinated sea water.

Drenched by rain and seawater they endured painful sores, but also faced temperatures so hot they cooked a pancake on the deck just from the sun's rays.

With their expedition now over, the Coxless Crew will concentrate on raising funds for the two charities they are supporting, Walking With The Wounded and Breast Cancer Care.

The route taken by the crew across the Pacific. Credit: