The Boat

'Northabout' was designed and built specifically for Polar Exploration

Northabout was designed by Caroff ­ Duflos Naval Architects, Paris France.

Built in 2000 by Jarlath Cunnane in a workshop in Mayo, with a lot of help from the team members and friends. The build time from start to finish was fifteen months, a remarkably fast time for a project of this size. Constructed entirely in aluminium, she is equipped with a lifting centreboard, which in its raised position reduces the draft to 1.4 metres, a very useful feature in the shallow arctic waters.

The sail plan is that of a bermudan cutter, with roller furling on both headsails, to make reefing easy in heavy weather.

A 92 HP Perkins diesel engine provides power when we have no wind. As fuel stations are rare in the arctic, we have five diesel tanks, which contain 1800 litres, sufficient to motor 2000 miles.

The Dickinson stove also uses diesel for cooking, heating and baking. The hull, deck and superstructure are insulated with 100 mm sprayed foam insulation, which moderates the arctic conditions.

Below decks we have 8 berths, 6 forward of the wheelhouse and one in each of the aft cabins. The wheelhouse accommodates the galley, a steering position, navigation station and the dining area. Forward of the steering position is the toilet and shower

  • Launched in 2001
  • Built throughout of aluminium
  • 15 metres long, 4 meters beam and 1.2 metres deep with centre-board up(3 metres with centre-board down)
  • Bottom plate is 12mm, side plates are 6mm
  • Frames are at half metre centres forward and 1 metre centres generally.
  • Engine is a Perkins Diesel 90 H.P.
  • 8 berths
  • Fuel capacity is 1,800 litres, giving a range of 2000 miles
  • Heating and cooking is by a Diesel Dickenson stove
  • Communications are by email, using H.F. radio and Iridium Sat./phone and VHF
  • Full emergency and survival equipment is carried including life-raft, survival suits, tents, bear protection and back-up H.F. radio and GPS.