Rowers cut short record-breaking Arctic mission

NEW YORK • An international team of rowers has ended a record-breaking expedition through the Arctic Ocean after becoming stranded on a remote Norwegian island partway through their 11/2-month journey.

They had set out to break several world records while using the mission to raise money for a school in the Himalayas.

They achieved 11 of 12 expected world records - related to distance travelled and location in the Arctic - before having to call off their mission on Monday.

Now, it could be at least another week before the crew of six adventurers, whose expedition was called the Polar Row, is evacuated from the island where they sought refuge on Aug 19. The rowers - from Britain, Iceland, India, Norway and the United States - took to sea from the northern coast of Norway on July 20 and headed north to an island on the Svalbard archipelago.

Summer expeditions press Arctic research

By Kirk Moore

This summer’s research cruises to the Arctic and Northwest Passage marked new milestones for the Coast Guard, amid growing interest in the region’s maritime potential and momentum building for a new U.S. icebreaker fleet.

The 420’ medium icebreaker Healy’s annual summer science voyage to the North Pole was notable for the first Coast Guard dive team to operate under the ice in 11 years. The exercise was the first since a 2006 accident cost two divers their lives, and led to widespread review and reform on Coast Guard dive procedures.

Romantic notions about the Arctic must include Indigenous right

The Arctic is many things to many people. In Canada, this malleability has made the region an incredibly valuable vehicle for nation-building and identity construction.

As a Newfoundland-born international politics scholar and author who researches Canada’s relationship with the Arctic, I believe that very pliability of the Arctic is an important feature of Canadian society, one that’s been cultivated for decades. The Arctic has intrigued many of us for myriad reasons since Confederation. 

Canada’s most famous painters, the Group of Seven, focused extensively on the Canadian North in their work and Lawren Harris, in particular, immortalized the imagery of a vast frozen landscape devoid of life into the national psyche and brand.