Northwest Passage aboard a Nordhavn 57

Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Sprague Theobald finally shut down his Nordhavn 57’s engine at the Elliott Bay Marina on Nov. 6, 2009, in Seattle, 141 days and nearly 8,500 miles after leaving Newport, R.I., in June.

For almost five months, Theobald and his crew of filmmakers, sailors and divers painstakingly navigated the Northwest Passage capturing stunning footage ashore, aboard and beneath their 57-foot Nordhavn, Bagan. After 18 months of planning, their route took them from Newport, R.I., to Newfoundland and Greenland before entering the Northwest Passage, then onward to Gjoa Haven, Barrow, Dutch Harbor and Juneau, Alaska, and finally Seattle.

Theobald’s film, Arctic Grail: The Northwest Passage, documents not only the history of the Passage, but also the impact of climate change on the fragile and harsh Arctic environment while chronicling the beauty of its landscape and people.

During the voyage Theobald and his crew faced all the dangers associated with navigating through the ice. At one point ice held them for three days while slowly driving them toward a rocky shore. Luckily, they were freed from the ice before being pushed onto the rocks.

Throughout the trip, the crew logged their own video diaries. The boat was also wired with video cameras running 24/7. The result promises to be a powerful documentary that not only captures stunning Arctic scenery, but also shares with us the day-to-day challenges, fears, frustrations and triumphs of the trip.

To see the trailer and learn more about the passage visit

By Ocean Navigator