This is the ideal boat to sail the NW Passage?

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Vega, Apr 18, 2006.

  1. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    The Northwest Passage is the most difficult sea passage. None has claimed so many lives and taken so much time to be crossed.

    First explorers came in the beginning of the XVI century and they have failed. Many have died out there trying to find another passage to China and India.

    Fact is that nobody has succeeded in making that passage the way they have tried, I mean, sailing.
    The first one that has succeeded in crossing had a motor in his boat (Amundsen).

    “Not until 1903-06 did a single ship make the entire trip through the passage; this was accomplished under the leadership of the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen. The first successful commercial voyage was made by the ice-breaking tanker SS Manhattan in 1969”

    Next year, a very experienced sailor (winner of the 1997 Transat Jacques Vabre ) is going to try a crossing with a sail boat, 500 years after the initial attempts. If Yvan Bourgnon succeeds, he will have the honors to be the first, on a sailing boat (he will not carry any motor).

    The boat that he has designed for this expedition is a very unlikely boat. It is a strange small cat, that can not only sail on the water, but can also sail over the ice.

    What do you think? The guy is crazy, or is this boat suitable for the job? projet.htm

    (sorry I can not find English sites).

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  2. hansp77
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    As far as I am concerned,
    crazy is pretty good.
    He only has himself to hurt (aside from maybe the people who might have to try to rescue him- but hey thats their job).
    The boat seems like it could make it,
    but is it really a boat when it skates across ice?
    call me traditionalist but I don't really think it is.
    What makes a sailing boat. Is it fundamentally the sail?
    If so, could I stick a mast and sail on top of my car, sail straight up the centre of australia from melbourne to darwin (with some lucky wind) and possibly claim a new speed record for such a sailing journey?
    I also don't think so.

    If he makes it then it is definately a great achievment of some sort, but if in making it he sails across ice, I am not so sure the record has been broken.

    After all, someone soon will undoubtably do it under sail alone, and across liquid water alone.
    Just one more of the spinoffs of global warming.

    Good luck to him (and us).
  3. antonfourie
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    antonfourie Senior Member

    I am sure with the way global warming is going we will be able to sail across there in 20 years time without any ice worries at all .....
  4. tom28571
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    tom28571 Senior Member

    Actually a couple guys did in a Hobie Cat some years ago. I think they had outside support though.
  5. antonfourie
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    antonfourie Senior Member

    I would imagine it hard to carry lots of food and "dry" stuff on a Hobie
  6. SheetWise
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    SheetWise All Beach -- No Water.

  7. Guillermo
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    Guillermo Ingeniero Naval

    I find it a very clever design, although maybe he will need some huskies, too. :)

    In 1940-1942 and 1944, a motorsailer, the canadian St.Roch with an Australian Eucalyptus (Iron Bark) hull, did the thing back and forth.

    In 2001 a Caroff Duflos designed, ice-strengthened yacht, Northabout, went through the Northwest Passage from Ireland to the Pacific by way of Greenland, Arctic Canada and Alaska. In 2005 they completed also the North East Passage.

    More interesting info on the North West passage:

    Nice thread, Paulo.

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