Arctic Fern Returns from Furthest North
Author: W M Nixon Posted on: 6/9/06 Print Version

John Gore-Grimes has been sailing northward from Howth towards distant Arctic islands since 1974. As long ago as 1983, this noted international expert in ice navigation was awarded the supreme global trophy, the Blue Water Medal of the Cruising Club of America, for his "extraordinary, well-executed and purposeful cruising in high latitudes".
That award was made 23 years ago.

Yet these extraordinary voyages have continued, and his 44ft sloop Arctic Fern has now returned to Howth after 5,055 challenging sea miles in eight weeks since departing on July 1st.

This cruise of 2006 included the furthest north ever reached by any Gore-Grimes voyage - this had the boat well beyond Svalbard and within a thousand kilometres of the North Pole.

Away up there, the skipper and shipmates Mark Tierney and Olly Garrard took a swim. The other two on board, John Massey and Adrienne Roche, let them get on with it. And then Arctic Fern headed away over many miles to East Greenland, Iceland, the Faroes, Shetland, and the Outer Hebrides, sailing stylishly to remote islands for some well-earned R & R after grappling with particularly difficult ice conditions off the Greenland coast.

Arctic Fern