Sunday, August 1, 2010

Arctic sailing 2010 - links to expeditions below

Every Arctic summer several boats try to sail the Northwest and Northeast Passage, and this year is no exception. Five boats are on their way to sail the Northwest Passage in addition to the two boats that are trying to do a full circle round the North Pole this year.

The Russian Peter 1st is already well ahead of the Norwegian Børge Ousland and crew on Northern Passage. The Russians left Murmansk two weeks before Ousland, and has, despite some problems, got a head start. They are now already in the Laptev Sea.

- We don’t have any good ice satellite pictures of Kapp Tsjeljuskin . But Saturday we decided to head for the ice instead of waiting East of Vilkitski Strait. Our hope is that wind from the West will clear the passage for ice, says Daniel Gavrilov, captian on Peter 1st.

Ousland is just southwest of Novaya Zemla and the passage to the Kara Sea.

Trond Aasvoll and his crew on RX 2 had the same intentions and Peter 1st and Northern Passage last year, but only made it through the Northeast Passage. RX 2 had been on the hard in Nome for the winter and the crew started the next leg of their journey Saturday.

- The race to be the first Norwegian boat that transits both the Northeast and Northwest Passage is still on, says Aasvoll.

The Finnish boat Sarema is one week ahead of them as they left Nome August 26th.

- We should now be as well prepared for the Passage as we'll ever be. We even have musk ox wool for our mittens to keep our hands warm, and goggles so that we would see where we are going even in the roughest weather. So, it is time to say goodbye Nome, Welcome the Northwest Passage, says Riitta and Pekka plus Latte (ship dog).

Here’s the list of boats that are sailing in the Arctic. If you know any more boats in the area, please email
Explorerweb's Ocean Editor Jon Amtrup on

ARIEL 4 (Sweden) – Northwest Passage East to West

Alaska (Norwegian) with Espen Paulsen, Northwest Passage East to West

RX 2 (Norwegian) with Trond Aasvoll, Northwest Passage West to East

Issuma (Canadian) Northwest Passage East to West

Sarema (Finnish) Northwest Passage West to East

Peter 1st (Russian) with Daniel Gavrilov and six other young Russians, Northeast and Northwest Passage

Northern Passage (Norwegian) with Børge Ousland og Thorleif Thorleifsson Northeast and Northwest Passage

FIESTA (Norwegian) 
with Wollert Hvide, East Greenland

JOTUN ARCTIC (Norwegian) with Knut Espen Solberg, climate research East Greenland

Saxon Blue (UK) with Harvey Jones and Andrea Stokes sailing the West coast of Greenland.

Teleport (Australian) with Chris Bray and Jess Taunton are doing the Northwest Passage in two stages and are sailing their 29 foot junk-rig boat to Conception Bay this season

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