Canada’s National Post reports that a cruise ship has run aground in the Arctic. 

Clipper AdventurerThe newspaper reports that the Clipper Adventurer, operated by Adventure Canada and carrying around  200 passengers and crew, ran aground Friday evening  in "three meters of water." The location of the grounding is about 55 nautical miles from Coppermine, Nunavut, near the border with the Northwest Territories

But the cruise operator claims that the cruise ship ran aground on an "uncharted rock."  

Sounds like a PR statement to explain some bad navigational skills by whomever was at the helm.

Evacuation efforts are underway.  A Canadian Coast Guard ice breaker is en route to the scene to transport passengers to Coppermine where the ship was headed.  The cruise began in Greenland.

The newspaper indicates that there were no reports of injuries or environmental damage.  This again is probably a report from the cruise ship operators.  It will be interesting to hear what the passengers say happened when they get home.   

This is the second time in recent months that an incident like this occurred.  Earlier this year, we reported on an incident where the Clelia II ran into rocks in Antarctica – The Clelia II – Another Antarctic Cruise Ship Skirts Disaster

In 2009, the Ocean Nova cruise ship, ran aground. To see some amazing photographs of a similar cruise ship grounded, look at the website.  Ironically, the Clipper Adventurer came to Clipper Adventurer Cruise Ship Ran Aground the rescue of the passengers aboard the Ocean Nova.    

Cruise Junkie has a list of cruise ship groundings on its web site.

The tour operator’s PR statement is below:

"MV Clipper Adventurer, en-route from Port Epworth to Kugluktuk NU, was grounded on an uncharted rock at 67 58 N 1112 40 W. At the time the seas were calm, sunny conditions and good visibility with no wind or swell.

Efforts of the vessel’s crew to dislodge the vessel during high tide on August 28th were unsuccessful.

The vessel now rests with a slight list. Conditions are stabilized. All passengers and crew are safe and unharmed. Weather remains favourable as passengers continue to enjoy onboard programming and hospitality.

Canadian authorities have been notified and the Canadian Coast Guard Vessel Amundsen is en-route set to arrive 0900 August 29th to assist with disembarking passengers.

Flight arrangements have been made to ensure passengers return to Edmonton for the evening of August 29th."

Clipper Adventurer RescueUpdate August 29, 2010:

The Canadian Coast Guard has released a photograph of the grounded cruise ship (above right).   

The Edmonton Sun interviewed the owner of the tour company who was quoted saying: "we were simply following the chart that we had and right where there wasn’t any indication that there was something in the water, there was this large rock.”  

Hmmm . . .

The newspaper also reports that the company will fly the passengers home, but they won’t be receiving any type of refunds.  

Update August 30, 2010:

The  Nunatsiaq Online reports that more than 120 passengers and crew, taken off the Clipper Adventurer cruise ship by the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker, the Amundsen, arrived in Kugluktuk after midnight on August 30th.  Photograph of rescued passenger is above left. 

September 4, 2010 Update:

It turns out that the hazard was charted 3 years ago!  Read "Uncharted Rocks" and Other Tall Tales – Clipper Adventurer Ran Into A Charted Hazard


Do you have information or photos/video about this latest incident?  Please leave us a comment below.


Top:    cruzeirospdl.blogspot

Middle:  Canadian Coast Guard (via CNN)

Bottom:  Jason Evans/Angut Pedersen (via Nunatsiaq Online) 

  • Good my breast is employed at this ship, and she says to me that the dano is serious but that she has not hurt but they are going to send all the workers to his corresponding countries, but not they all are going to return to work it it is unjust they have to finish at least a contract.

  • b

    Just consider this.. If you are navigating on an old chart, and don’t check the ‘notices’ which may contain updated information regarding such ‘obstacles’, (but have not yet been ‘printed’ yet), you just ‘may’, hypothetically, hit a rock…….

  • Polar expedition leader

    The reality is that in the polar regions there are uncharted rocks. There is human error and mis-judgement but these areas are so remote that “notices to shipping” will not magically discover dangers on seldom traved routes. Remember less than 150 ships have successfully transited the NW passage since Amundsen over 100 years ago. All this specilation above is retarded coming from a bunch of computer jockies who know nothing about polar ship travel. I have been stuck in ice for days and weeks, I have run aground in antarctica. These “accidents” occur not becuase of pure carelessness but because these areas are raw and until 100 years ago were not even imagined to be transited by regular ship traffice, let alone tourists! If you think modern technology and bridges full or electronics are smarter than the high latitudes you are wrong. These captains are often the very best in the world for polar shipping and even they can’t predict the forces of the Arctic. With more traffic and no improvements to aids to navigation these sorts of things are going to happen more and more. Luckily the environment and human life were spared.

  • Capt.Pierre jourdain

    Was there an Ice Pilot onboard at first.
    Was the Captain able to navigate these region.
    Was the charts corrected from N. TO MARINERS.
    Regulations is that the vessel should have personnel with good experience to go there.
    In no time there will be an catastrophe up there.
    Capt.Pierre Jourdain
    Ice Advisor, member of canadian shipping federation

  • Jack Taylor

    I know you seem to like getting facts straight, so maybe in your rant, you guys can manage to get the date right, as the notice was given in 2007, not 1997 as you print here.

  • Thanks Jack, no “you guys” here, just me. I had the date wrong, its 2007 – thanks I corrected it. Jim Walker

  • yves

    the thing is that captains and bridge officers are having most of the risks on all of this expedition ships. Most of the existing expedition ships are not equipped enough for this areas. But it became fancy …expedition in lucksury……but non of the compalis running the expedition ships want to spend much money for bridge equipment.

  • G Gordon

    Jim Walker should stick to law because this article is loaded with speculation based not of any facts but rather Jims attempt to discredit the officers of the ship based totally on conjecture and we all know what the underlying objective of an attorney is. And of course Jim has extensive experience navigating in the extreme conditions of the Arctic so we should listen to his ambulance chasing mentality rather then waiting to get the fact before making any judgements on the officers of the ship.

    And with regard to Capt Jourdain’s comments, everyone should know that there is yet to be any agreed upon formal certified international training to be a “Ice Advisor”. And what the IMO ( international Maritime Organization) has proposed is nothing more than a 1 week class covering general knowledge of ice environments and navigational issues along with a few years of experience in the polar regions. And if this is the captain I think it is on the Clipper Adventurer, he has over 25 years navigating in both the Arctic and Antarctic. The charts in these regions are sparse in detail at best. And many of the charts the ships use in many of the more remote areas in the polar regions are the ones that they personally created as they explored the areas. And I am sure if Capt Jourdain found himself in the same unfortunate circumstance he would expect the same respect until all the facts were in. So lets just stick to the facts, leave the speculation out and wait for the factual details as they become available and provide the respect deserved of any licensed officer working on such a vessel. Lets not proceed with this lawyers premise of ” Guilty until proven innocent”

    What all these vessels really need is forward looking sonar to navigate these areas safely which would allow them to see the change in depth before they arrived there rather than seeing the depth sounder depth decrease as they strike a submerged object.

  • GGordon

    Although I must now add that it looks like some of the facts may in fact be starting to emerge. See the following link as to charted depths in area of grounding


  • G Gordon – sounds like you either had a (now unemployed) buddy at the helm of the Clipper Adventurer or you are a captain and are not yet over the embarrasment of running over a charted hazard or some other negligence yourself. What is the nature of your employment and your relationship to these red faced officers?

    The focus of my article was the quick PR statements from the vessel owners/operators. Perhaps they should have gathered the “facts” as you suggest, rather than falsely represent to the public that the “rock” was “uncharted.”

  • mymy

    hello . you guys do you know what’s up with the boat now ? cause my dad works there and i can’t get in contact with him . i read that the the boat was freed if you can help me write at

  • Michael Small

    I don’t know why I took this long to search this online. I was Chief Officer on the The main Tug that pulled her off the rock and to safety. That was quiet an experience. I have over 250 pics and videos of the time we were there. I forget how long we were on sight, but it was almost 3 weeks. I have also have the video of her coming off the rock. Cheers Everyone

  • WESMAR has Scanning Sonar on several of the Polar Expedition vessels, such as the ‘National Geographic Explorer”. For the minimal cost of a a scanning sonar, Most of these groundings could be avoided….

  • sonny r ratcho

    accident always happened,coz im onboard on the clipper adventurer that time,and its my first time that the rescuer are to long before they come to rescue.