Northwest Passage

Stefano DE LUIGI

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A unique and enlightening experience that has increased my consideration of human adaptation to hard climates and landscapes but also inducing reflection on how much our action is changing the face of our planet. For centuries the well-known Northwest Passage has been the subject of myths and nightmares for every sea explorer, ever since 1497 when Giovanni Caboto – the Italian navigator and explorer also known as John Cabot – tried to face it in vain.
The Northwest Passage, a sea route through the Arctic Ocean that meanders between the northern coast of North America and the islands of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, is the most direct sea route connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans in the Arctic Circle. First navigated by Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen 100 years ago, it has remained an almost impossible challenge in the 20th century. Until now. Global warming has reduced the sea ice that normally blocks the way all year round, and has opened the famous passage and made it fully navigable. Since 2007, about 40 boats have successfully crossed the passage. This work documents part of a voyage in the Northwest Passage, the first time it has been accomplished by an Italian boat “Best Explorer” led by skipper Nanni Acquarone. It’s been an honor and a true adventure to participate in the first italian Northwest passage expedition. I’ve shared sailor’s daily life for two weeks in the narrow spaces of a 51ft. steel keel cutter. As I’ve spent most of my life within the cement of large cities rather than the open greatness of the seas, being on board really felt like living a movie. Natural sceneries composed of lunar landscapes, the noise of breaking glaciers generating icebergs; ice mountains appearing suddenly from the fog and whales breathing on the surface are the strongest memories from this trip at the borders of the world. Fifteen days of navigation from Upernavik, Greenland – near the 74th parallel or 900km inside the Arctic Circle – to Pond Inlet in Canada’s Inuit Nunavut territory via the Baffin Strait and the Pond Inlet Canal. The Best Explorer has been the first boat to cross the passage and reach Pond Inlet in 2012.
Pays : Canada

Nombre de photos : 43