A New Passage Through the Arctic
Sailing the Northwest Passage—the icy waterways through the Arctic Ocean that connect the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans—is a treacherous undertaking, even for large vessels. But this month, a pair of gritty sailors will kick off their second attempt to sail a 31-foot yacht through a never-before-navigated route across the Arctic Circle.
Nicolas Peissel of Canada and Edvin Buregren of Sweden will stray from the course traditionally taken through the passage and instead navigate farther north—up the West Coast of Greenland and eventually into the Jones Sound. Last year’s effort was abandoned, due to dangerous ice conditions, but the team is confident about their second go. Their vessel, a Swedish-built sailboat named the Belzebub II, has been their work-in-progress for three years, rebuilt from “a wreck” on a shoestring budget. “We eat, sleep and breathe the boat from the morning to midnight every day,” Peissel writes.
The expedition not only hopes to explore areas previously uncharted by sailboat, but also hopes to bring a greater awareness to the changing climate of the Arctic. You can learn more at their website, A Passage Through Ice.