Search for the Narwhal

After we left Pond Inlet we went on a search for the infamous Narwhal. The crew has put a lot of research into finding them. All sources pointed us to a place called Bruce’s Head in Koluktoo Bay.  We anchored there for the night in the hopes of seeing the unicorn of the sea. After no sightings, we decided to head out on the morning of the 27th.

Approaching the Glacier. Photo by Michael Powers.

We had to do a little more exploring and decided to head up into Croker Bay to see some Glaciers. As we approached the first glacier werealized that there was a lot of ice floating around in the fjord.As Fortrus crept towards the Ice wall, Paul spotted a polar bear swimming in the water. We quickly turned the boat around and followed her as she swam towards an Iceberg. The cameras were flying on the bow as she climbed up the Iceberg and disappeared down the other side.

Polar Bear! Photo by Paul McDonald

Steve spotted her again as she swam towards the glacier. Charlie brought the little boat around and we began to hunt her down for some closer photos. The ice was thick and the scout was banging through some very big bergs. The current was ripping and the ice tried to grab us a few times. Ice flows are definitely not something to play with.

Ice. Photo by Stephen McDonald.

Scott and Charlie Scouting the bear through the ice. Photo by Michael Power

The tender caught up to the bear and we took some great photos of her with some magnificent backdrops. In the moment and not reallythinking, we noticed that we were under at least ten stories of ice that could fall on us at any moment. Very dangerous and extremely scary but the end result was, getting some Ridiculous photos and video.

More then ten stories tall at the water. Photo taken by Stephen McDonald.

We have no idea what’s next.

The Boys just after we spotted the polar bear. Photo by Natasha Kovalenko

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The trip across the northern Labrador Sea couldn’t have gone any smoother. The smiles and excitement from seeing a polar bear lasted the two days of the crossing.

Crossing the Labrador Sea. Photo by Natasha Kovalenko

The fog lifted as we arrived into the Pond Inlet channel and the day became absolutely beautiful and sunny. Fortrus was surrounded by mountains covered in glaciers as she cruised into Pond Inlet.

Fog over the montains: Photo by Erik Aubry

Fog lifting. Photo by Erik Aubry

Entering Pond Inlet. Photo by Natasha Kovalenko

We cleared into Canadian customs and had a little walkaround town. We got to see our first Narwhal tooth. Unbelievable to imagine how big these animals must be.

Village of Pond Inlet. Population 1,315. Photo by Melanie Waugh

Fortrus will make her way west through some small icebergs tonight where she will anchor off Bruce Head in the attempt to find the illusive Narwhal. This spot hosts many different species of sea mammals. We will spend the day here, do a little fishing and maybe go ashore for a hike up a mountain.


It just gets better and better!!!!

Polar Bears! Photo by: Paul McDonald

Just when we though it couldn’t get any better. We find a polar bear riding an Iceberg in the middle of the Labrador Sea.  Absolutely Amazing!!!

Polar Bear. Photo by: Paul McDonald


Upernavik

The Icebergs got bigger and bigger as Fortrus cruised north along the west coast of Greenland. The scenery as we pulled into Upernavik was absolutely stunning.

Town of Upernavik. Photo by Michael Power

We had a good last night in Upernavik that included a massive fireworks show that I’m sure the locals will be talking about for years.

The guests and crew went through a few hundred rounds of paintballs and most are feeling the affects today. The night also included a skinny dip by a few brave souls.

Midnight Sun. Photo by Michael Power

We met Trevor, a fellow Australian that has been traveling around the world for years on his 30ft sloop. He spends his winters locked in the Greenlandic Ice with 5 months of provisions. We had him onboard for breakfast and sent an email off to his wife saying that he was O.K. They hadn’t been in contact with each other for months.

Trevor’s Sloop. Photo by Michael Power

Amanzi Marine organized us some fuel in Upernavik. We topped up and took off. Greenland is now behind us. Wow… it is absolutely stunning.

Fueling. Photo by Michael Power

Next stop is Pond Inlet, Canada.


Artic Circle with the Boys

Paul and the Boys made it to Nuuk. They are onboard and drinking some whiskey. We decided to head out immediately. At 13:30 on Aug 21st, Fortrus crossed over into the Arctic Circle.

Fortrus & the Burg: Photo by Natasha Kovalenko

As we circled around Disko Island, we saw some fantastic icebergs that stand hundreds of feet in the air. They are absolutely unbelievable. The photo’s are flying.

Paul & the Boys: Photo by Michael Power

The trip with the boys has already been adventurous. Today we tried to make it into Ilulissat harbor. As we edged our way in, there was far too much ice and we had to turn back.  Chucks of ice the size of volkswagen’s were banging off our bow. The noise of the ice bouncing off Fortrus was enough for us to turn around. We were still nine miles from the harbor when the decision was made to turn back. The ice was much thicker ahead.
We are now heading another 220NM north to Upernavik. We’ll take on some fuel there before turning left and crossing to Pond Inlet.
Hopefully we’ll have better luck getting in there.

Ice Sculpture. Photo by Charles Howden


Trip to Nuuk Greenland

We’ve arrived in Nuuk Greenland! The passage couldn’t have gone any smoother. The seas got as high as 7ft but the period was long and easy.

The fog came in heavy 12 hours out of Nuuk. Our first Iceberg sighting was with about 200ft of visibility. Levi had to steer the boat in order to miss our first bit of frozen water.

Soon after the fog lifted, we noticed that we were surrounded by bergs and bits. The air was crisp and the combination of beautiful blue water, Icebergs with mountains in the background made for some spectacular photos.

Iceberg

Iceberg!! Photo by: Natasha Kovalenko

Charlie ran the Scout up ahead of Fortrus as we entered into the harbor. It’s quite a wide-open harbor but being unknown we decided to play it safe. It was a good call because the markers aren’t too easy to find and a container ship ended up running aground the next day. Pretty scary.

We’re tied up to a commercial dock. With a 12ft tide here in Nuuk, the sundeck is below the dock at low tide. We’ve got a long ladder ride up and down to the main Deck.

The shores of Nuuk. Photo by Melanie Waugh

The weather is beautiful. It’s warm in the sun even with the outside temperature being 47 degrees F or 9 degrees C. We saw some beautiful midnight Northern lights. It was unbelievable the way the light danced around the sky.

We’ve had a few Mechanical issues that Erik has been addressing. It has been a lot of work, but all in all Fortrus is braving the cold nicely.

We’ll be here for a couple of days awaiting the arrival of the Guests. We’ve toped up on fuel, fixed a few problems and Michael, Tash and Melanie started provisioning and getting the boat ready for guests.

We had Amanzi Marine arrange our fuel here in Nuuk. They had a truck arrive along side in less than an hour. The fuel prices are pretty good. Much better than northern Canada so we put as much as possible on theboat. We will top up again in Upernavik before crossing over to Pond Inlet.

It’s been super full but extremely exciting trip so far. The crew gets a well-deserved day off to catch up on some sleep and walk aroundNuuk. We will be cruising north to Upernavik as soon as Paul and the boys get onboard.

We’re all looking forward to seeing the guests and sharing this place with them. It truly is beautiful.

Fortrus Crew on the t/t. Photo by:Natasha Kovalenko

We’re running a little behind schedule but we should still be able to make it to Alaska.

Let’s hope the weather and ice decide to let us through!


Nice Shots

Theodore Too has been seen up and down the East Coast at various boat shows in the last twelve months. Here He is seen in his home waters outside Halifax. Photo by: Michael Power

Dolphin in the Straights of Belle Isle. Photo by: Michael Power

Photo by: Natasha Kovalenko

Whale in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence Photo by: Natasha Kovalenko