7. TRANS-ATLANTIC: St. John's-Crookhaven, Ireland // 1,900 Miles & 19 Days // $7,500 // WAITLIST
THIS PASSAGE IS FULLY CREWED. TO BE ADDED TO THE WAITLIST, CONTACT MIA@59-NORTH.COM
This will be Isbjorn's 3rd time across the Atlantic (Mia's 6th, and Andy's 5th!). We'll be retracing the route from our first-ever voyage in Arcturus in 2011, from Canada to the south coast of Ireland, where Crookhaven, a small village near the famous Fastnet Lighthouse, will welcome us back to the realities of life ashore in a pleasant and calming way!
Crew will join us aboard Isbjorn in St. John's, where we'll be berthed right downtown and alongside the big Grand Banks fishing fleet. St. John's is a charming waterfront city with lots to see and do, so it's worth spending a day or two here before you join the boat to explore. We'll do our standard safety briefing and rig the boat for heavy weather, which we can certainly expect in these parts at some point in the 2,000 mile passage to Ireland. We'll also spend extra time briefing the radar operation, as it's not unheard of to see the occasional iceberg on the Grand Banks.
Once offshore we can expect a 12-15 day passage. We took 23 days on Arcturus in 2011 from St. Pierre, but then she was a much smaller boat and we never motored through the calms!
The landfall in Crookhaven is a special one - the town is more like a village, and the two pubs ashore are the center of community life - we spent 12 hours in the pub in 2011 after the Arcturus crossing, eating breakfast, lunch and dinner at the same table!
We HIGHLY recommend spending some extra time once you leave Isbjorn, as this part of Ireland is stunning. Easiest international flights will be from Dublin, which you can get to by bus fairly easily.
Photos from Arcturus' Trans-At in 2011
Departure from Annapolis, Anchored out with Audentia and Entropic. Photo by Micah as he left us and went back to work.
From Annapolis, we went up the Chesapeake Bay, through the C&D Canal and out the Delaware Bay to get to the ocean. Flat / calm the first 24 hrs.
We enjoyed a lovely dinner in the Arcturus cockpit, was a bit lazy with the lookout and almost hit this fishing boat!
Andy's parents Dennis & Gail joined Arcturus in Newport and sailed with us up to Canada. Rice and beans for dinner.
We had a SPOT along on the trip that tracked us. We pushed a button and it sent out email to our loved ones at home so they knew where we were, pretty smart?
"Sune the Driver" - our Cap Horn windvane. He was by far the best purchase for the trip and steered us across the Atlantic. Took some time to learn how to use it, but very impresed with his ability to steer both in light and strong winds!
Andy jumping in for a swim in Lunenburg, our 2nd stop in Canada.
Andy and Mia next to Arcturus in Lunenburg, Canada.
Clint joined us in Lunenburg. This is how we slept on the crossing, lee cloth so we would not fall out of bed, and a nice warm sleeping bag! The few times we had the engine on, Clint slept like a baby. :)
Andy reading a book, a bit foggy and cold, you can see it in the way he is dressed. You can also see our weather cloth that we put up to prevent spray to come in to the cockpit.
Andy is plotting our position - final destination for the night is the entrane to Bras d'Or Lakes, Nova Scotia Canada.
We dropped anchor in a nasty rainstorm the night before, Clint and Andy had a tough time to get the anchor up the following morning.
Clint, a tree surgeon by profession, did not hesitate to climb up the mast.
Drying out all the wet gear from the previous night.
Steve Goldthwaite invited us to his dock and work shop in Baddeck on the Bras d'Or Lakes. A few last projects got done and as ou can see on the photo, Andy sent Clint up the mizzen.
Andy, Mia & Clint, the Arcturus crew.
Our 3-burner stove and oven, heavily used on the trip.
We anchored out in St. Pierre and used our dinghy to get ashore. First and last time Clint rowed :)
Clint & Andy serving the shroud, last project before we took of across the Atlantic.
Clint & Mia playing battle ship. Great shot of the Arcturus interior.
Andy & Clint drinking a cup of coffee.
Spinnaker day, Clint had some fun playing in the water. Hooked up with a harness and tether to the spinnaker pole. :)
Mia's challenge on the trip, learn how to knit!
Arcturus Laundromat, Clint run out of clean underwear...
Message in a bottle, half way across the Atlantic.
Game Day - Snake and ladder.. Clint spent half a day to make the game, and lost to Mia.
Arcturus bakery. We baked bread almost every day on the trip, mmmm!
Arcturus Chocolate factory. Mixed sugar, 100% chocolate, nuts and raisins, very good chocolate treats!
Nice calm sail, can it be this calm in the ocean?
More calm.... Clint enjoying his afternoon tea.
Other Important Info
Paul Exner, aka the ‘boat whisperer,’ is an old friend and easily the most knowledgeable sailor we’ve ever sailed with. He’s got a great story too - Paul built his own Cape George Cutter from a bare hull, then sailed her solo down to the BVI, where he’s run offshore expeditions on her for years. After Hurricane Irma, Paul fixed up his damaged boat and sailed her all the way to Hawaii, where he relocated his family in the wake of the devastation in the Caribbean.
Simon grew up spending his summers on his parent's “summer cottage," a classic Vindö 50, and got his first boat when he was only 7. He has been working on boats of all sizes for the past 12 years, including passenger ferries in Stockholm, RIBs, offshore construction vessels in the North Sea and most recently as Project Manager at HOC Yachts in Stockholm & Visby. He's currently a manufacturing engineer at Candela Speed Boats.
Ben sailed with us across the North Sea in May 2018, specifically to get some time aboard for working with us in the future! He’s got his own sailing business out of Bainbridge Island (outside Seattle), running day-trip and multi-day cruises in the Pacific Northwest on his beautiful 44-foot Pearson Countess Ketch TRUE. When he’s not sailing, Ben is a professional musician with his band St. Paul de Vence.
Tom & Darlene and longtime friends of ours who have sailed thousands of miles with us on ISBJORN and other boats we’ve delivered over the years. Tom was there from Day 1, driving to Connecticut with us the first time we set eyes on ISBJORN, and indeed sailing her south to Annapolis on her first-ever passage with us. They cruise extensively on their Ericson 38 KOMPASS.
Tom & Darlene will be Simon’s mates on the San Juan to Key West passage in April 2019.
August is the Norwegian sailor and friend of ours who loaned us the rifle for the Svalbard expedition. We first met through Andy’s podcast, and later finally met in person in Longyearbyen. August went to school to learn sound design and production, and both his dad and grandfather were documentary filmmakers. He grew up on the west coast of Norway and has sailed his entire life, and over the past few years has decided to follow that passion and has started doing it professionally, mainly in the challenging and harsh Norwegian Arctic.
August will initially be sailing with Andy on ICE BEAR for the passage south from Lunenburg to Annapolis in summer 2019.
Dennis has sailed many thousands of bluewater miles and stands in for Andy when he can't (like when he got appendicitis offshore!). Dennis is also super-supportive of the whole charade, and Andy & Mia use his basement as temporary storage when they're home. Sadly, Gail died of brain cancer in 2012.
Click here to read more about how to register and join us offshore!
Click here to read in general about the best way to get to & from the boat. Specifics on each trip will be emailed to you in a series of newsletters once you register. It's ocean sailing - be flexible in your planning!
Click here to read about what you get - and what's not included - when you sign-up for this passage.