ANADYR, Russia, July 12 (UPI) -- A team of U.S. jet-skiers that traveled to a remote region of Russia as participants in a reality TV show was detained there for four days, a team member said.
Stephen Moll of Folsom, Calif., and fellow members of the "Dangerous Waters" team had stopped in the Chukotka region of northeast Russia, part of the first leg of a journey of about 6,200 miles from Alaska to Vietnam, RIA Novosti reported.
As they approached the Chukotka coastline, an armored tank and men with guns met them, Moll said.
"Everything was fairly dramatic. The Russian military were probably as scared as we were," Moll told RIA Novosti by telephone. "We didn't speak the language and it was very nerve-wracking."
The team members, released Wednesday, had been detained because they lacked correct paperwork, RIA Novosti said.
Moll said the soldiers soon realized the team members posed no threat.
"I'd say that within 30 minutes they had us in their base and were serving us tea and cookies and trying to make us feel OK," Moll said. "They knew right away that we were not a threat in any way."
But RIA Novosti said the men were held as officials in Moscow decided what to do with them.
Before leaving, the team members got a tour of a local history museum and a visit to a hot spring.
Moll said the team members thought they had had all the proper paperwork for the visit but a 2006 Russian Federal Security Service order requires foreigners to obtain an additional permit to enter Chukotka.
"After all this was resolved, everyone was happy, all smiles," Moll said.
Before the team members left, Russian border guards escorted them to the beach and waved to them as they departed for Alaska.
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