Five Whiteness primary school bairns met leading explorer and adventurer David Hempleman-Adams as his yacht Northabout stopped off on her way to Svalbard for a shakedown trip as part of preparations for a grander expedition.
The polar explorer who has a number of notable firsts on his adventure CV plans to circumnavigate the North Pole in Northabout, which will be the first time a yacht has made the hitherto impossible trip, shetlandtimes.co.uk reports.
The fact that the polar ice has retreated far enough to make a circuit by a lightweight vessel feasible is the reason for the trip, according to Mr Hempleman Adams, who plans to highlight climate change.
Mr Hempelman-Adams said that they had enjoyed a fantastic sail north this week, with the sun and light winds contrasting with the weather of two years ago when it had been more like winter in June.
This time, the bairns accompanied by Mrs Small and teacher Dianne Forsyth, who was acting head at the time of Mr Hempelman-Adams previous trip, was invited on a tour of the specially designed aluminium yacht which has a raking bow to help her breach the ice.
Also on board is 13-year-old Benji Edwards, whose father Steve is part of the crew. Benji will also be taking part in next year’s trip to circumnavigate the pole and will be the youngest person ever to have achieved this.
The yacht will set off tomorrow for Tromso where she will pick up fuel before heading for Spitzbergen.
Source: Arctic-Info Photo: flickr.com