Monday, September 29, 2008

Sloop GJOA & Roald Amundsen

Gjøa was the first vessel to transit the Northwest Passage. With a crew of six, Roald Amundsen traversed the passage in a three year journey, finishing in 1906. The 70 ft square-sterned 48 ton sloop was built by Kurt Johannesson Skaale in Rosendal, Norway in 1872, the same year Amundsen was born. For the next 28 years she served as a herring fishing vessel, before Amundsen bought her in 1900, for his forthcoming expedition to the Arctic Ocean . Gjøa was much smaller than vessels used by other Arctic expeditions, but Amundsen intended to live off the limited resources of the land and sea through which he was to travel, and reasoned that the land could sustain only a tiny crew. Roald Amundsen became the first European explorer to navigate through the Northwest Passage (1903-1906), and went on to become the first man to reach the South Pole (1911). For the rest of the story CLICK HERE.

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