Fyodor Filippovich Konyukhov (Russian: Фёдор Филиппович Конюхов; born 12 December 1951 in Chkalovo, Pryazovskyi Raion, Zaporizhia Oblast, Ukrainian SSR) is a Russian survivalist, voyager, aerial and marine explorer, and artist. In December 2010, he was ordained as an Eastern Orthodox priest in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate).
Konyukhov was born in the village of Chkalovo, located in the Pryazovskyi Raion of Ukraine's Zaporizhia Oblast. His father was a fisherman on the Sea of Azov, while his grandfather had served in the same garrison as Georgy Sedov, an Arctic explorer. Supposedly Konyukhov attended a nautical school in Odessa and another in Leningrad earning a specialty in polar navigation.Supposedly he worked as a professional navigator and marine engineer. He served 3 years in the Soviet Navy. There is a legend that he was stationed in a Kaliningrad guardhouse with the Baltic Fleet when he volunteered for a 2.5 year tour of duty as a Soviet Marine sailing across the South China Sea as special forces delivering munitions to the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War. After his service in the Soviet Armed Forces, he left behind the terrible realities of war and completed a vocational arts school in Bobruisk which enabled him to become a successful painter and sculptor. Konyukhov is an ordained priest in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate). He was made a deacon in 2010.
In 1983, Fyodor Konyukhov was admitted to the Union of Artists of the USSR (he was the youngest member at that moment). Since 1996 he has been a member of the Moscow Union of Artists, Graphic Arts section; since 2001, a member of the Sculpture section as well.
He is a winner of the Gold Medal of the Russian Arts Academy, an Honorary Academician of the Russian Arts Academy and the creator of more than 3,000 paintings. He has participated in a number of Russian and international exhibitions.
Fyodor Konyukhov becomes the first priest of the Russian Orthodox Church to successfully climbed Mt. Everest. He took the icon of St. Nicholas to the Summit with him.
Konyukhov is the only person to have reached such extreme points of the planet as the North Pole (three times), the South Pole, the Pole of Inaccessibility in the Arctic Ocean and the top of Mount Everest (twice) and also sailed around the world via Cape Horn 4 times.
In May 2008, Konyukhov completed a solo circumnavigation of Antarctica in a sailboat, becoming the first person to do so. His attempt began on 26 January 2008 and took 102 days in total, with his route falling entirely between the 45th and 60th parallels south.
Konyukhov has set world records, notably crossing the Atlantic Ocean in a row-boat URALAZ in 46 days, the best 24-hour distance in the same boat (110 miles).
From 22 December 2013 to 31 May 2014 Fyodor Konyukhov crossed the Pacific Ocean starting in the Chilean port of Concon and finishing in Australian town of Mooloolaba (Sunshine Coast) without entering ports and without any external help or assistance. He covered the distance of more than 17,408 km (9400 nautical miles) on the Turgoyak (K9) rowboat in just 162 days.
On 23 July 2016, Konyukhov became the second person to circumnavigate the world in a hybrid hot-air helium balloon. American Steve Fossett is the only other person to have completed the feat, having done so in 2002 on his sixth attempt. Konyukhov took "just over 11 days", as opposed to Fossett's 13 days.
Konyukhov announced his intention to challenge Fossett's record in September 2015, although the idea had "first captured [his] imagination in 1992". The balloon he used, named the Morton, was specially constructed by Cameron Balloons in Bristol, England, and had a height of 60 metres (200 ft) and a volume of 15,500 cubic metres (20,300 cu yd). The balloon's non-pressurised gondola was made of carbon fibre and measured roughly 2 metres (6.6 ft) wide and 2 metres (6.6 ft) tall, containing Konyukhov's bed, food, water, oxygen, and first-aid supplies, as well as navigation and communication equipment.
The attempt began in Northam, Western Australia, 96 kilometres (60 mi) north-east of Perth, on 12 July 2016. He and his team had arrived in Australia in June, but experienced several delays due to weather and the failure of equipment to arrive on time. After launching, Konyukhov flew east across Australia and the South Pacific Ocean to South America, where he passed through Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, and the southern tip of Brazil. He then flew across the South Atlantic, the southern Indian Ocean, and the Southern Ocean before eventually landing again in Bonnie Rock, Western Australia, completing his circumnavigation. Konyukhov's planned route was 33,000 kilometres (21,000 mi), but an unexpected southerly deviation (which took him to the Antarctic Circle) extended his flight to 34,000 kilometres (21,000 mi).
In November 2019 he said he would travel in a balloon into the stratosphere.
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2000 (March) – Completed the longest dog race IDITAROD – 1150 miles from Anchorage to Nome (Northern route)
2007 (May) - Dog sled expedition across Greenland Ice Cap from East to West. Started from Isortoq (East Coast) and finished at West Coast (Ilullisat). Covering about 800 km in 15 days and 22 hours during a Trans-Greenland dog sleigh ride.
2013 (April–May) – Dog sled expedition from North Pole to Canada. Together with his partner - Viktor Simonov they crossed Arctic Ocean in 46 days and reached the shores of Ward Hunt Island (Canada).
In 2011 Konyukhov fulfilled an expedition cross Ethiopia, covering more than 1000 km of route.
Explorers Grand Slam
Fyodor is the first Russian mountaineer to complete the 7 Summits challenge for which a person must climb the highest mountains of each of the seven major continents, also he is the first Russian traveller and third person in the world, who completed The Explorers Grand Slam: he also visited both the North Pole and the South Pole.
- 1992 (26 February) — Mount Elbrus (Europe/Russia)
- 1992 (14 May) — Mount Everest (Asia) — (in the AvtoVAZ team)
- 1996 (19 January) — Vinson Massif (Antarctica)
- 1996 (9 March) — Aconcagua (South America)
- 1997 (18 February) — Mount Kilimanjaro (Africa)
- 1997 (17 April) — Mount Kosciuszko (Australia)
- 1997 (26 May) — Denali (formerly Mt. McKinley, North America) — (in the team)
On 19 May 2012 - Fyodor Konyukhov together with the Russian team "7 Summits" reached the top of Mt. Everest. His climbing route was via the Northern Ridge (Tibet). This expedition was devoted to the 20th anniversary of the first Russian ascent of Mt. Everest (via the Southern Col) – May 1992.
- "Konyukhov plans 2nd Everest ascent". 1 February 2012.
- Prominent Russians: Fyodor Konyukhov. Russia Today. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
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- Calkhoven, Laurie; Herndon, Ryan (1 February 2006). Guinness world records fearless feats: incredible records of human achievement. Scholastic. p. 19. ISBN 978-0-439-71565-2. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
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- "Around-the-world helium balloon build begins in Bristol". BBC News. 16 October 2015. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
- Briana Shepherd (11 July 2016). "Russian adventurer Fyodor Konyukhov prepares to launch solo hot-air balloon mission in WA". ABC News. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
- Sarah Taillier (13 June 2016). "Russian balloon record tilt held up by Perth customs 'delay'". ABC News. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
- "Around the World on Roziere Balloon". Fyodor Konyukhov. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
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- "Balloon World Records". Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. Archived from the original on 8 September 2016. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
- Fyodor Konyukhov (17 September 2016). "Experience: I flew solo around the world in a hot-air balloon". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
- Bennett, Magnus (11 November 2019). "The adventurer who is heading to the stratosphere" – via www.bbc.co.uk.
- "Fr. Feodor Koniukhov concludes his expedition through Ethiopia / OrthoChristian.Com".
- "Russian explorer set to break circumnavigation record in hot air balloon". Guinness World Records. 22 July 2016. Retrieved 14 December 2017.
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