At dawn on 1 July, the stunning Perini Navi 56m S/Y Rosehearty departed Newport, Rhode Island to begin her adventurous transit of the Northwest Passage from East to West.
Just yesterday, while navigating more than 80 nm up one of Greenland’s magnificent fjords, Rosehearty crossed paths with PY 55m M/Y Galileo G. A sight to behold as the two superyachts, both built at Perini Navi in Italy, saluted each other as they venture North.
Rosehearty’s itinerary includes following the trail of one of “Barrows Boys” – the British explorer, John Franklin with the ships HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, commissioned by Admiral Barrows. The “Lost” Franklin exploration attempted to traverse the last un-navigated section of the Northwest Passage in 1845, with 24 officers and 110 men.” They presumably got stuck in the ice and never came out. Four years later the British Admiralty sent two expeditions to look for them, one from East and one from the West. The hunt for the Franklin expedition, at one point in 1850 involved eleven British and two American ships. The rescuers from the East eventually had to look for the rescuers from the West, getting stuck in the ice themselves every winter for five years. Many credit Franklin with discovery of the Northwest Passage but it was actually discovered by John Rae.
There have been books written about Franklin’s explorations and the rescue missions called “In the Kingdom of Ice” and “Fatal Passage” and other foreboding titles. Rosehearty plans on a much shorter trip than Franklin’s by far, but will cover more than 2,000 nautical miles in just under four months. Climate change may actually be an advantage to her trip, and she is hoping the ice will cooperate this summer. Their first leg will take them to Qeqertarsuag (Disco) Greenland, then across Baffin Bay to Resolute Bay, Cornwallis Island, then wholly ensconced into the passage they will head south to Cambridge Bay then through to Tuktoyakuk and onward to perhaps Barrow or Nome Alaska with a stop likely in Vancouver.