Man crosses Lake Pontchartrain on a paddleboard

Published: Jul. 4, 2012 at 5:35 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 18, 2012 at 6:12 PM CDT
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Jeff Lakey prepares to cross Lake Pontchartrain on a paddleboard (Photo: Jeff Lakey)
Jeff Lakey prepares to cross Lake Pontchartrain on a paddleboard (Photo: Jeff Lakey)
Jeff Lakey with family and friends. (Photo: Jessica Holly)
Jeff Lakey with family and friends. (Photo: Jessica Holly)

Mandeville, La. - While many relax on the Fourth of July, one man decided to cross Lake Pontchartrain the hard way.

Just before the sun came up, Jeff Lakey climbed aboard his stand-up paddleboard for the 26-mile trip across the lake.

The owner of Nola Paddleboards says he's the first to attempt the crossing this way.  He credits former Saints player Steve Gleason with the inspiration. Lakey says he recently met Gleason and that inspired him to do something extraordinary.

He completed his paddleboarding trip across the lake in about eight hours.  He arrived at the Bonnabel Boat Launch around 1:45.

He's challenging supporters to donate to TeamGleason.org.  Anyone who donates $37 will receive a "Paddle the Pontchartrain, No White Flags" t-shirt.

You can learn more about Lakey's adventure at teamgleasonexperience.org/paddle-the-pontchartain/