Friday, July 31, 2015

Life in Tuk

It really has been wonderful to have Martin in Tuk.  He was able to get internet access as well as get a local to do their laundry.  All is right in the world again.

In our discussions, Martin said that on the island of Tuk, the climate change has really affected the natural wildlife as well as the way of life for the Inuit village.  Ice is a lot more fragile meaning that a lot of the animals that walk out on the ice fall through it because it hasn't built up like it has in past years.  Also, where there were once beautiful formations of ice, they are now diminished to small blocks of ice.

In the picture below, you can see the permafrost melting...

Melting permafrost layer that is causing the out gassing of carbon onto the landscape.
While in Tuk, Martin was also able to send me some photos of the people and land.  I thought they would be interesting to share.
Traditional Inuit Sod Hut
Old Whaling Icehouse
Old Graves
Musk Ox Skulls 
Bear Skin being dried
Inuit children playing
Martin and his crew should be taking off in a short while and heading to Holeman where they will eventually try and work their way up to Cambridge Bay to wait out the ice.  I hope to hear from him once he arrives in Holeman.

Thursday, July 30, 2015


Aventura arrived in "Tuk" last night and I got a whole collection of photos from Martin of the island.  Of course, this photo was my favorite.  More updates to follow... Stay tuned!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Ice, Ice Baby

I just got this picture from Martin.  The ice situation does not look good.  As Aventura heads to Cambridge Bay, it looks like the ice is thick and deep.  Meaning, they are going to have to make a few stops to wait out the ice, curtailing a straight shot to Cambridge Bay.  Here's to hoping that it breaks apart for them helping them to reach their next destination without delay.
Lot's of white means lot's of ice.  YIKES!
This could slow things down dramatically.

Oh Canada!

Martin catching up on tales of the Northwest Passage.  (Photo cred: (
So far Aventura and crew have sailed a total of 1650 miles.
Navigating through ice.
The second week of the trip required a lot of navigating through ice.  In fact, so concentrated at times that the crew had to have 1-hour watch periods because it required so much concentration to power through the ice.  I would text Martin often, and he would reply back, "Can't talk, ICE!"

Finally, the ice seemed to dissipate and Aventura crossed the demarcation line between the US and Canada.

First landfall in Canada was a small town called, Herschel Island.  Herschel Island used to be a busy whaling station but is now part of the... now let me get this spelled right... the Qikiqtaruk Territorial Park.
Herschel Island (Photo crew:
Once in Herschel Island, Martin and the rest of the crew were greeted by one of the two caretakers of the island, Peyton Lenny.  He reported that they are only visited by two or three yachts per year.

While on the island, there was an old sauna and the crew was able to convince them to fire it up so that he and the crew could warm up their bones in a warm sauna.
So much for warming up their bones.  After spending time in the sauna, Martin was introduced to a proper Arctic baptism.  FREEZING!

Now, Aventura and crew are headed to Tuktoyaktuk "Tuk", the largest Inuvialuit settlement in the area.  Hopefully, once they arrive, Martin will find internet access, because he is already half way through his satellite phone minutes, so our conversations are getting cut shorter and shorter.

More pictures to come!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Ice in all directions

Martin sailing through the ice. 
Aventura and crew have been navigating through ice for the past few days and at times very worried that they might get stuck in it and have to wait it out.  I was very excited for Martin to reach the next stop, Point Barrow, where he hoped to have cell coverage and the internet.  However, once they arrived, it was so shallow that the boat was hitting the bottom so they had to forgo the stop and sail on.

An email I received from the Jimmy Cornell:

"...we left Dutch Harbor 9 days ago, had a good sail north, through Bring Strait, crossed Arctic Circle, then we got caught in a large concentration of ice 30-40 miles off Cape Wainwright (from 8/10 to 3/10)  and spent about eight hours extricating ourselves.  We eventually made it to Point Barrow early this morning, Thursday.  As the ice forecast along the Alaskan coast looks quite favourable we decided to continue without stopping. There is still a lot of ice along the coast, sometimes quite concentrated. sometimes quite wide apart, so it is easy to slalom a course and generally keep to our desired course. Sunny and clear, took lots of photos, but only of ice as not much else, just a few birds around. Still, quite spectacular
scenery. So we are making steady progress."

(Photo cred: