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Berrimilla sails the North West Passage

'Alex Whitworth'    .
The 10 metre yacht ‘Berrimilla’ has just crossed the North Atlantic and sailed into Falmouth this week after a hazardous and historic voyage through the North West Passage.

Sydney-based ‘Berrimilla’ has been the first and the smallest boat sailing west-east through the Passage this year.

Owner skipper Alex Whitworth and his two crew have recorded the 11,000 mile voyage from Sydney on their website. An entertaining personal account of their daily life has included stunning descriptions of spectacular seas, whales, icebergs and polar bears, supplemented by maps, photos and technical details.

Alex Whitworth, 66, learned to sail on the Beaulieu River as a boy, went to Dartmouth Royal Naval College and served in the Fleet Air Arm. Passionate about ocean sailing and racing, in 2005 he sailed from Sydney to Falmouth via Cape Horn, competed in the Fastnet Race and sailed back to Sydney via the Cape of Good Hope to race in the Sydney-Hobart Race. This latest journey is another unique achievement, especially in one season and without icebreaker assistance.

Berrimilla sailing into Sydney Harbour after returning from the Fastnet -  .. .  
Crewing on this voyage, Corrie McQueen, 29, was born in Scotland and studied Engineering at Glasgow University. She is a highly-experienced round-the-world sailor and met Alex in Sydney when she had just completed the 2007 Sydney-Hobart race. Kimbra Lindus, 33, is another experienced circumnavigator who joined ‘Berrimilla’ in Alaska, was born in Tasmania, is also an engineering graduate and works in Western Australia.


After participating in a Symposium on Risk at Louisiana State University, in a bar on the edge of LSU Campus, the drawing of a map by Commander Pascal Lee in Alex’s notebook suggested a possible route through the North West Passage, and this led to the current journey to observe the total solar eclipse on August 1 2008.

You can read more about the exploits of Berrimilla by going to their website:

by BW Media


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7:45 AM Wed 24 Sep 2008 GMT

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