Monday, September 2, 2013

BABOUSHKA calls it quits on their trek to the North Pole by sailing catamaran

20130904 UPDATES

September 4, 2013
Sebastian Vincent and Babushka now aboard the Admiral Makarov were traveling at 14 knots to the south! Here is their story: This morning at 3:30 local, have noted a speck on the horizon, it was the Admiral Makarov. Time to finish putting everything away, it is there to couple our ice sheet, the crew made ​​us sign then approach us, we leave with the feeling Babushka abandon a teammate. With the crane, they descend a cage to embark on board. Vincent goes first, I joined and this time, he said: "we will embark Babushka". Fifteen minutes later, all three on board, we are heading south at 14 knots through ice. The crew welcomes us with a smile, showing us our cabin and insisting that he should not hesitate to take a shower! After the shower, breakfast (a large block of brawn with lots of garlic and a bit of tea). Then showed us around the boat, as an economy measure, we walk on three engines (the 9 available) which allows anyway to break plates over two meters thick at 12 knots. It knocks and vibrates but it goes fast.We should arrive at Pevek in 2/3 days. Another big thank you to the crew of the Admiral Makarov, the cross gri nose, MRSC Pevek and all those who made ​​this rescue in a corner of the world almost inaccessible.

September 3, 2013
Sebastian Vincent and Babushka were recovered by the icebreaker Admiral Makarov!

20130903 UPDATE: (
September 3, 2013
This three days that Sebastien Vincent and triggered their distress beacon. They tried everything they believed it until the last moment, but poor weather conditions present and especially future force them to give up!
Going by their own means is impossible, they were obliged, with great regret, to trigger their tag. They're fine, though vexed.
A Russian icebreaker is on its way from the mainland.

French Arctic adventurers end their mission due to bad weather at 82 13.97N, -171 47.09W

Sébastien Roubinet and Vincent Berthet in their catamaran 'Baboushka'
Two French men, Sébastien Roubinet and Vincent Berthet , who set out on a trek to the North Pole in July in a wind catamaran, announced today that they are blocked in the Arctic. A Russian ice-breaker has been dispatched to help them.

“Sébastien and Vincent set off their warning flares. They did everything they could, they believed in themselves right up until the last moment, but with the bad weather conditions now, and more expected to come, they were forced to abandon their mission” said a press release posted on the Facebook page The Artctic Track (La Voie du Pôleî!/Lavoiedupole)

“Ice began to build-up on the route to the Pole and Spitzberg, and the temperature plunged, and is expected to keep dropping in the next eight days” explained the press release. The blockade happened suddenly and was unexpected by venturesome duo.

Roubinet, 39 and Berthet, 32 set out to the Arctic at the beginning of July, just at the peak of the summer thaw.

Babouchka (grandmother in Russian). Babouchka is half catamaran, half sail wagon, she’s able to move across the sea and ice.

The goal was to make it to Spitzberg in the Svalbard archipelago in Norway, via the North Pole and observe the state of melting ice that has gone on over the past years.

However, "Admiral Makarov", the Russian ice-breaker will come to the rescue after receiving their distress calls.

“The French travellers have enough food and fuel to last them ten days. That’s more than enough time for help to arrive”, confirmed an agent from the Russian Centre for maritime help.

Both men are experienced travelers. One man navigated the North-West passage between the Pacific and Atlantic in just a sail on a mini catamaran he had constructed himself, back in 2007.

The second adventurer, is a cameraman and explorer of the great North, had participated in a 1000 kilometre trip by kayak to the fjords and to the middle of the icebergs off the coast of Greenland last year.

Errors in RFI reporting above have been removed or corrected.

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Juergenuie said...

The article on RFI contains incorrect information.

The ice breaker is called ADMIRAL MAKAROV - MMSI: 273148110
It's in the area of Mendeleev Abyssal Plain and has est. 150-180km to go.

The Facebook link int the article is wrong and should be

Anonymous said...

Glad they are safe, but it must be slightly embarrassing for them to become trapped by increasing sea ice given that their intent was to highlight reduction in ice.

Juergenuie said...

The French version of shows this:
September 3, 2013
Sebastian Vincent and Babushka just been recovered by the Russian icebreaker Admiral Makarov. They are now en route to Russia.

It looks like that both went on board at UTC 16:34, as the Admiral Makarov made then a 110 degree turn and traveled for more than an hour.

Anonymous said...

Were they really there to promote alarm over climate? If so, what an ill-informed misdirection of courage and boldness! Such publicity-seeking for the shameful and destructive cause of climate alarmism is a sorry sight to see in the glorious wilds of the Arctic.

Jim Hunt said...

Good morning Anonymous,

For more about the reasons Babouchka "became trapped" and her subsequent recovery by the Admiral Makarov you may wish to read:

Jack said...

I am bored with intrepid heroes raising my awareness. They are starting to raise my awareness of how they might be more productively employed.

Rick said...

At the very least our intrepid explorers should be required to pay for the fuel that was consumed for their rescue.

Jim Hunt said...

@Juergenuie - "At UTC 16:34 the Admiral Makarov made then a 110 degree turn and traveled for more than an hour"

Where did you find that interesting piece of information? My usual sources were silent about the travels of Admiral Makarov north of 80 degrees.

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