Apprentices Complete Whaleboat Expedition from Rockland, Maine to Mystic, Connecticut

Departure: Sunday, June 16, 2013

Estimated arrival: Friday, June 28, 2013

Students at The Apprenticeshop, the school for traditional boatbuilding and seamanship in Rockland Maine, have mounted a 350 mile expedition aboard their newly built 29’ Leonard whaleboat, an open wooden boat with five rowing stations and a 22 foot steering oar.





Day 1: Leaving Rockland Harbor

Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition

Sunday, June 16, 2013—Day One

An enthusiastic crowd, a beautiful Penobscot Bay sunrise, and calm weather conditions greeted the ten members of the Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition on the docks at The Apprenticeshop this morning.  After stowing the full two-week’s gear in both the whaleboat and accompanying chase boat Advent (36’ Bud McIntosh schooner), the 29’ open boat left the dock at 5:30 a.m. with Captain Bryan McCarthy, Apprenticeshop Shop Director, at the helm.  Apprentices Rachel Davis, Daniel Creisher, Simon Jack, Garrett Farchione and Tim Jacobus were in the rowing stations.

The seas and conditions were conducive to fine rowing and the crew spent the next seven hours under human power, making it to Port Clyde and a welcome rest by lunch time, covering some 21 miles in the process.  After this break, the crew headed back out and found the seas had kicked up.

Apprenticeshop board member Pat Lydon had arrived at Port Clyde to join the flotilla in his 24’ Carney lobster boat Stella B. Given the difficult seas, McCarthy decided to split the crew onto Advent & Stella B and tow the whaleboat to the evening rest spot, giving the crew ample time to recover from the first leg of their long journey.

They arrived another 10 miles down the coast in Pemaquid at approximately 7:00 p.m. to a warm welcome from the Lydons, where they found terrific hospitality, a mooring for Advent, beds to sleep in, and even a hot tub to soak their day-one backs for a welcome restorative evening!  Day One was a success and a gentle entry into the expedition to come.


Day 3 Rain

Monday, June 17, 2013—Day Two

The whaleboat departed the Lydon’s haven at 6:30 a.m.  They aim to cross through the mouth of the Damariscotta River this morning and clear the mouth of Kennebec this afternoon, hoping to land at Hermit Island Campground on Small Point (Phippsburg, Maine) for the night.  If all goes as planned, the crew will continue on Tuesday and hope to spend the night at Portland Yacht Services in Portland Harbor.


This morning, the Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition departed Pemaquid at 6:30 a.m. and got towed out of John’s Bay and through the Thread of Life. There, they boarded the whaleboat, put oars in and rowed past Fisherman Island, the north end of Damariscove Island, past the Cuckold’s Light and across the mouth of the Sheepscot River.

Off Black Rocks Island and ledge, Advent picked them up and towed them through the bumpy waters of the mouth of the Kennebec and past Popham Beach.

The expedition covered approximately 25 miles today, 12 of them human powered.

All crew members are in good health and spirits, and everyone has had a chance to helm.  Captain McCarthy has been rotating the crew through the oar stations and helm every half hour or so, with back- up crew aboard Advent.

Tonight, the crew will camp at Herman Island Campground in Phippsburg. They aim for Portland Harbor Tuesday.



The Crew Day 3

Tuesday, June 18, 2013 –Day 3

The apprentices had another fantastic day on the water.  They rowed clear across a very clear and calm Casco Bay, from Small Point to a bit of a rainy Portland, averaging over 3 knots.  Details to come.




Whaleboat Under Sail!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013 – Day 4

Today, they’re sailing!

After an early morning interview and filming with WCSH-Channel 6 (we’ll post it when we get it), the Whaleboat Expedition departed Portland Harbor at about 8:00 a.m.

The crew enjoyed an unanticipated overnight aboard Westward, the 125’ sailing vessel associated with Ocean Classroom last night.  Chris Konecky reports that he and Simon Jack got special treatment and were bunked in the Captain’s quarters. “It was a big fancy room,” he said, “lots of varnish and mattresses on the bunks!”  Others slept in forward berths while Tim Jacobus opted to tent on the lawn at SailMaine.


“Our hosts in Portland were really gracious.  Big thanks to Portland Yacht Services, SailMaine and the crew aboard Ocean Classroom’s Westward!” Chris said.

Chris reports that the crew is all holding up brilliantly – both physically and emotionally.  “I’m eating really well, I think I’ve gained five pounds,” he joked.

They’ve also enjoyed some wildlife sightings.  They’ve encountered two minke whales, lots of porpoises and seals, and yesterday a seal trailed along behind them for approximately four miles.

In addition to rowing and wildlife watching, the crew pass the time sharing jokes, singing songs, and making up, what Chris calls, the ‘Whaleboat edition’ of 80s classics.  “We’re considering releasing an album when we arrive at Mystic,” he claimed.

But today was the first day that winds were favorable enough to raise the heavy cotton sails sewn by world-renowned traditional sail maker Nat Wilson of East Boothbay, Maine.

“When we first left Portland Harbor, we got in the lee of the land, so had to put in the oars,” explained Tim.  “But later, around noon, the wind picked up and we’ve been sailing ever since!”

We checked in with the crew at about 1:30 this afternoon and they were averaging 3-4 knots under sail.

Sailing allows the crew some down time:  Chris and Bryan were checking charts, while Garrett caught up with his novel and Rachel, Simon and Daniel could lie back and enjoy the day.  Kevin Carney left the expedition last night, as planned, to return to the Apprenticeshop, leaving Lori, Ken and Anna aboard Advent.

They are hoping to get to Kennebunkport tonight – stay tuned!


Safe and sound in Kennebunkport…sweet dreams.




WCSH 6 Portland News Clip of Whaleboat Expedition




UNH/Fort Constitution, Newcastle, NH

Thursday, June 20, 2013 – Day 5

The Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition had another fantastic — if not long — day in the Gulf of Maine.  They departed Kennebunkport at 8:00 a.m. and rowed all 27 miles to Portsmouth. In the last hour of the day, they had to work double time against an outgoing tide and a head wind to get around Portsmouth Light and into the old Fort Constitution Coast Guard Station in New Castle, New Hampshire.

The station is now operated by the University of New Hampshire as a steel head trout research center, and the apprentices’ new friends from UNH helped them tie up to the dock, opened the shower facilities and allowed them to spend the night there.  Ken Rich (of the expedition’s chase boat, Advent) was especially pleased, UNH being his alma mater.


“They were really pulling their hearts out that last hour of the trip,” Ken reported of the last leg of day five. “They’re getting toughened up to it and really strong.  They won’t let us tow them now, but for short bits.”

Apprenticeshop good friend David Leon was waiting ashore to surprise the crew upon their arrival. “I was excited to see them rowing in,” he reported, “especially so because when I served in the Coast Guard I was stationed right there at the fort!”   David was eager to treat everyone to ice cream, but was surprised to learn that the crew had taken an oath at the beginning of the trip to consume no alcohol.

“We decided that it wouldn’t do us any good to be fuzzy-headed waking up at 4 a.m. to go for a full-day’s row.  So we all agreed that the trip would be ‘dry,’” trip leader Bryan McCarthy said.




Visit from a seal pup


Friday, June 21, 2013 – Day 6 (Summer Solstice)

A 6:00 a.m. departure had the crew riding out of Portsmouth on an incoming mid-tide, just shy of flood.  Out of the harbor, the seas were flat calm and conducive to making great progress.  By 8:00 a.m. they’d already covered 10 miles.  Although the seas began to swell a little, the breeze was very light and the crew had no trouble rowing steadily by the New Hampshire coastline.

Spirits of the crew continue to be high; everyone is in great health and enjoying the journey.


Sunrise from Fort Constitution

“Rachel has done yeoman’s duty with the food,” reported Ken Rich aboard the chase boat, Advent. “Everyone is really well fed!”

They aim for Rockport, MA today, where an enthusiastic group of Power Squadron members, led by Jack Reid, will welcome them at the Sandy Bay Yacht Club.  They expect to get in by 3:30, having rowed the entire New Hampshire border in 5 hours and 35 minutes.  Arrival in Rockport will mark the half-way point of the expedition.

One of the day’s highlights was a visit from another sea-faring individual – please see what Tim Jacobus caught on his iPhone.


Motif No.1, Rockport, MA

Saturday, June 22 – Day 7

Having arrived in Rockport, MA harbor yesterday, they were given a hearty greeting by Harbormaster Rosemary Lesh and her son, Story, Commodore of the Sandy Bay Yacht Club.  Story welcomed the crew to the yacht club where they were able to spend the night in the instructors’ lounge.

When we caught up with the crew at 6:30 a.m., they had just departed the harbor by sail.  The day started with an ample southwest breeze leaving the harbor, but then it died down and the crew put in the oars.  They were passing Thacher Island as they phoned in the day’s report.


“We hope to make Scituate today,” Bryan said, “where we’ll meet up with Bob Yorke who has been very supportive of the expedition so far.”

A full week into the trip, the crew is truly in good shape.  “If anyone had blisters they’ve morphed in the calluses by now,” Bryan said. “Everyone’s hands are good, mostly because of how we are switching rowing stations every half hour.  There’s not enough repetitive movement in one spot to cause problems.”

Daniel Creisher’s eye, which he had injured several days before the expedition departured, is now fully healed.

“What we’re learning on this trip are the subtleties of the boat – the things you wouldn’t know from reading a written account. Everyone has learned, first hand, how feathering the steering oar just slightly makes the boat respond: you can really make a difference with that small finesse.  Little things like that—it’s the kind of information you can only learn by doing it.  And we’ve been navigating – Garrett has been taking compass bearings to spots on land, orienting the chart with buoys, learning to read where we are by identifying the subtle contours of the land.”

After Scituate tonight, the gang will head to the mouth of the Cape Cod Canal tomorrow.




Rowing to Scituate, MA

Sunday, June 23, 2013  — Day 8

The Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition had fantastic hospitality from Ashop friends Bob and Judith Yorke of Scituate.  The Yorkes are avid open ocean rowers and have rowed the entire coast of Maine in their 20’ dory.  When they learned of the expedition this past spring, they went out of their way to help the crew in their planning and, last night, rolled out the red carpet for them.

Members of the Satuit Boat Club, the Yorkes not only arranged for docking for the whaleboat and a mooring for Advent, they opened the boat club up to the crew and served them wood-fired pizza when they arrived.  Later, they invited the crew to their home, where many slept in beds while others opted to sleep on the screened-in porch with sleeping bags and pads.

The Yorkes rose at 4:00 a.m. with the crew, drove them back to the boat club, and walked to the end of the breakwater to wave good-bye as their new friends rowed against the tide during their 5:30 a.m. departure.  The gang is very grateful for your warm, welcoming hospitality, Bob and Judith, thank you very much!


Just outside of the harbor, Bryan and Ken consulted and agreed that there was enough of a southwest breeze to raise the sails on the whaleboat.  Soon thereafter, the main carried a double reef, the jib was up, and the boat was averaging four knots.

“Today was unbelievable,” Bryan laughed. “We covered 22 miles under sail.” He also noted how the wind and sea called out the best in the crew’s abilities.

“It’s some of the best seamanship I’ve seen thus far on the trip,” Bryan reported. “It was breezy enough to keep us on our toes.  Everyone responded as the conditions demanded. They were all working together, shifting their weight appropriately to keep the boat as flat as possible.  Simon did great work on the main sheet.”

After those 22 miles, the wind kicked up even to 20 – 25 mph.

“We started to see some really snotty weather, so we all piled on to Advent and towed the last eight miles.”

The expedition landed in Sandwich Marina, formerly known as the Harbor of Refuge, at the mouth of the Cape Cod Canal.  Just as they were getting off the boat (everyone relieved to be on dry land), the fog began to roll in.

As luck has it, Bryan’s family lives in Falmouth, MA, which is where the gang will spend the night, after helping his nephew celebrate his birthday.  They are glad to be in a safe harbor as weather for tomorrow looks unfavorable for towing through the Canal.

“We might hunker down and wait until Tuesday.  Everyone could use a break and we’re already making great time,” Bryan explained.



Cape Cod Canal

Monday, June 24 – Day 9

Through the Canal!

When we caught up with the expedition, they had just left the Cape Cod Canal and were pulling into Onset Bay, at the northeast tip of Buzzards Bay. The Canal must be passed under power (no rowing or sailing allowed), so Advent towed the whaleboat the 15 miles through.  The Canal also must be passed (when heading south), riding the ebb tide as currents rip through it up to 5.2 miles an hour.  The crew hung ashore this morning until noon in order to catch that tide.


Emerging at the top of Buzzards Bay, they were greeted with a good wind out of the southwest and visibility of 1-3 nautical miles.

“It’s a steep chop,” Bryan reported, “so we wouldn’t make any progress against both the wind and the tide.”  They planned to wait it out for the remainder of the day in Onset Bay.

Bryan McCarthy, Apprenticeshop Shop Director and expedition captain, hails from Falmouth, Massachusetts.  The expedition crew benefited from his family’s hospitality last night, staying at their house and feasting on the coffee and donuts they offered this morning.

“They were really good to us,” Bryan shared.

This evening, McCarthy family hospitality extends to family friends living in Onset, who have offered dock space and a mooring for the boats.

“We’ll wait and see what the weather wants to do. We may try for New Bedford tomorrow or the following day.  The earliest we’ll hit Mystic at this point would be Friday, that’s if the weather is good from here on out,” Bryan explained.



The crew at the New Bedford Whaling Museum

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 – Day 10 Crisis Averted

After our early morning check in with the crew, the up-until-now relatively uneventful trip came into some drama.

Most of the time, as the whaleboat team rows, Advent hangs back at a fairly significant, but still safe, distance. The two crews stay in visual and radio contact, though there is often up to half a mile or more between them.


Today, after Advent hung back for a few hours and then caught up to the whaleboat, the apprentices smelled diesel fumes. They quickly radioed Ken and Anna to report it.  After a few minutes, Ken radioed back: his engine was spurting fuel just in front of the high pressure pump, and the engine compartment was covered in diesel.  The fuel tank that had just been filled yesterday was now nearly empty.

By 10:00 a.m. in the morning, the wind had increased out of the southwest and the whaleboat was now rowing against the tide: making headway was increasingly more difficult.  Nevertheless, the boat turned away from its destination (still New Bedford) and rowed back to join Advent.  Simon went aboard the now engineless 35’ schooner in order that they have enough crew to get it under sail.

As the whaleboat, now down one crew person, pulled away and headed toward West Island, Advent raised sails and began tacking across the southwesterlies on the east side of Buzzards Bay.  After some time of hard rowing with a diminished crew, against a 15 knot wind and a flood tide, Bryan made the call to pull in behind Wilbur Point where they were able to pick up a mooring and rest. There they discussed options and assessed the situation.

New Bedford is working waterfront, and its harbor is full of boat traffic. Later today, as the whaleboat and Advent approached the harbor, they would witness a large industrial barge making its way in and several commercial fishing vessels departing the port. Advent, under sail, would not have much maneuverability and the whaleboat would seem as small as a kayak in comparison to most of the vessels in the channel.

Being within cell range, Bryan phoned Bob Roche at the New Bedford Whaling Museum to request assistance.  Roche, in turn, contacted TowBoatUS. Captain Clint Allen responded, and radioed that he would send a boat to intercept Advent just outside the New Bedford hurricane barrier.

The whaleboat left its mooring and headed on.  Advent continued to sail and would meet TowBoatUS soon. Even still, under oar, the rowers were approaching the hurricane barrier to the port much faster than the tacking Advent.

As the whaleboat approached New Bedford, there were approximately 1.5 miles between them and the now under-tow Advent. Bryan put out a “securite” call on VHF 16 to let port traffic know that the small open boat was entering the busy harbor.  Within two buoys of the entrance, he repeated the call.

In response, the crew was met by two police boats with lights flashing.  In addition to the TowBoatUS that was assisting Advent, a second craft of that service appeared and radioed “free assistance” to the whaleboat crew. And while they were still rowing against the current and tide and down one team member, our now seasoned expeditioners declined the offer.  The police boats, lights still ablaze, escorted the whaleboat all the way into the port to their slip at Pope’s Island Marina (an arrangement that Bob Roche had made).

After Advent was docked and everyone was secure, Daniel and Ken went below to assess the engine.  They made a list of parts that needed replacement and were able to find everything at a nearby marine outfitter.  Within an hour, Advent’s engine was cured, running, and the crisis was averted.  Both crews are still on course to achieve Mystic for the WoodenBoat Show on Friday.

In the evening, after museum hours, Roche invited the crew to an exclusive tour of the Whaling Museum.  They ogled at the half-size model of the whaleship Lagoda, which Bryan described as “a mini-Charles W. Morgan.”

“The Whaling Museum is an amazing place – it in itself was worth the whole trip,” Bryan said.

The crew ate dinner seated beneath the hanging cetacean skeletons that greet museum visitors daily.

After an evening spent in beds, compliments of the Unitarian Memorial Church’s Harrop Center, the crew will head for Newport. They expect Wednesday to be a long and full day, but intend to make most of their mileage in the morning before the wind kicks up.

They are still looking for a place to spend Thursday night and hope to achieve a halfway point between Newport and Mystic.  Please share with us if you have recommendations or local connections.




Newport, RI

Wednesday, June 26, 2013 – Day 11 – quick report

The Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition made it into Newport, RI this evening under sail.  The day began 12 hours earlier, under oar power out of New Bedford.

Advent’s engine is working just fine today and towed the whaleboat for a few miles at midday.

Tonight they are tied up next to the Ida Lewis Yacht Club in Newport.  Please check back tomorrow for a more fully detailed report.



Wednesday, June 26, 2013 – late report, Day 11

Day 11 of the Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition brought another early departure for the crew. Leaving the port of New Bedford, they rowed 17 miles, heading southwest toward Newport. At midday, the winds prohibited forward progress, so the crew boarded Advent and towed for another 10 miles.

Approaching Newport Harbor, the winds died down, so the crew climbed back aboard the whaleboat. They were able to sail part way into the harbor and row the rest.

Newport’s Ida Lewis Yacht Club gave them a grand welcoming. Many members came out to ogle at the whaleboat on the dock and ask questions.  The crew was then invited to dine in the club restaurant, where they enjoyed lobster rolls and other delights, compliments of the membership. Great big thanks to our new friends in Newport!

Speaking of friends, Ashop wonderful friend, photographer, and volunteer John Snyder met the whole gang as they came into the harbor and shot some film, which we will post as soon as possible. John was instrumental in arranging for the crew’s introduction at the club, yet another gift from him. We are lucky to count him in our community.

All is well on Advent and the engine is running beautifully.


Thursday, June 27, 2013 – Day 12 early report

We spoke to the crew early this morning. They had departed Newport Harbor at 6:00 am but as they got outside, were met with an encroaching fog bank. Bryan made the call to turn around and head back in.

“It was the best call he’s made as captain so far,” Chris said. “The fog followed us the whole way back. By the time we got to the dock, we were socked in.”

“Leaving the harbor, we were right in the middle of the shipping lane, which is the last place you want to be in zero visibility,” Bryan said. “And what Chris neglected to mention is that the whole way back, he was up in the bow blowing a manual fog horn, kind of like a whistle, which sounds less like a fog horn than it does like a sick duck.”

Early morning forecasts described patchy fog with the chance of it burning off midday.

A second check-in at 11:30 found the crew back underway, having gotten on the water at 11:00.

Proving that everything happens for a reason, including fog, the crew spent part of the morning talking about the expedition with the Ida Lewis youth sailing program and instructor Alexa Schuler. And this time, their departure was heralded by the club’s cannon.

Their current destination is Point Judith. From there, they will assess if the conditions are conducive to making Watch Hill tonight.


The crew harbored at Point Judith Marina last night.  Marina employees Don and Anne were very accommodating. The stop was unplanned but they were very supportive  of the expedition, allowing the crew to camp on the lawn and bunk in the laundry room.

With patchy fog and low visibility yesterday, and grim weather forecasts for coastal Connecticut through the weekend (including more fog and 5-7 foot seas possible), the first real weather adversity has fallen upon the crew.

When we spoke to them this morning, they were experiencing heavy, intermittent showers, with thunder and lightning.

In the meantime, Apprenticeshop staff arrived at Mystic Seaport yesterday to set up their booth.  They were delighted to see whaleboats that had already arrived from Rocking the Boat, the Beetle Shop, and Great Lakes Boat Building School.

Understanding the implications of the forecast, staff called upon local resources to explore alternatives. Mystic’s Matthew Stackpole suggested that the Apprenticeshop borrow one of the trailers from one of the other whaleboat builders.  Pat Mahan from Great Lakes was eager to lend their trailer  – terrific!

“We’re all in this together,” Matthew commented.

The current plan is to gather the whaleboat, its crew, and Advent’s crew (Advent itself will remain in Port Judith for now) and truck them to the mouth of the Mystic River where they could splash back in and row the final leg of the journey, arriving at the WoodenBoat Show sometime after 1:00 this afternoon.



Whaleboat comes home to CW Morgan,                           Photo Credit: John Snyder, Marine Media

Friday, June 28, Day 13, arrival at Mystic!

The Apprentice Whaleboat Expedition pulled into the Mystic River at approximately 3:30 this afternoon.  They we greeted by the shouts & applause of supporters and WoodenBoat Show attendees.

It was a moving, emotional moment when they passed astern of the Charles W. Morgan, which photographer John Snyder of MarineMedia captured brilliantly here.

Arriving at Mystic’s middle pier, the crew was heralded by cannon fire and the welcoming embraces of family, friends, and Ashop staff.

We are tremendously proud of their accomplishment and welcome them back ashore.  Much of the afternoon was spent sharing anecdotes and celebrating the trip, and all are very tired and happy.

Please check in tomorrow for details of Day 13, which was a full, rich conclusion to this inspiring expedition.


Friday, June 28, 2013 – Day 13, full report

The Leonard Whaleboat Comes Home to the Charles W. Morgan

When Bryan, Rachel, Daniel, Chris, Garrett and Tim awoke on the grounds of Point Judith Marina, it was to thunder and the rumbling of steady rain on their tent flaps. Before tucking into bed the night before, they had carefully checked the forecasts.  They knew that the good graces of the weather deities had run out.  Heavy rain and fog were to be the norm for the next three days.

Because of the grim predictions, Bryan and Ashop staff had conferred the night before to discuss contingencies.  A trailer had been lined up, should that option be necessary, though the crew was really hoping to finish under oar and sail power.

But Friday morning was, in a word, miserable, in southeastern Rhode Island.  The crew set up to cook a hearty breakfast as they waited for a break in the weather, and lightning and thunder continued as Rachel cooked bacon in the marina gazebo.

Just 60 miles to the west in Mystic, however, there was no rain.  Though foggy at the Seaport, visibility at least extended across the river.  The air was heavy and the sun seemed to be gaining the upper hand against the fog.  By 8:00 a.m., it was clear to everyone that rowing, or even towing behind the radar-less Advent, was not on the day’s itinerary.

Managers Don and Anne at Point Judith Marina had been very kind to the expeditioners and now stepped forward to offer to travel lift the whaleboat, at no cost, onto a trailer. A final look at the forecast seemed to offer no better solution, if they wanted the boat to arrive at the Seaport during the WoodenBoat Show, which, given that boats from Great Lakes Boatbuilding School, Independence Seaport Museum, Beetle Boat Shop, and Gannon & Benjamin had already arrived at the Show, they truly wanted to do.

So, in the spirit of hundreds of great American expeditions that had gone before, Bryan and the crew decided a portage was in order.

At the call of “go,” Ashop & Mystic staff gathered at the shipyard at the Seaport.  Having discovered that the Great Lakes trailer was a flatbed, only serviceable by a travel lift (they hoped to find a launch ramp in the Mystic River), Independence Seaport stepped forward and offered the use of their trailer.

Not only would the team have to portage the whaleboat, but they’d also have to be able to transport all of their gear and crew members across southern Rhode Island.  Apprenticeshop friends Carl Cramer of WoodenBoat and John Snyder offered to help.

By 2:00, the whaleboat was securely on the trailer, the crew was seat belted in, and now a caravan of expeditioners was traveling Route One west.

Arriving at Mason’s Island 45 minutes later, another travel lift, davit-like, lowered the whaleboat into the Mystic. The tide was flooding into the river and strong gusts were marching out. The crew dipped their oars in again and pulled out into the currents toward the drawbridge.

Back at the Seaport, Mystic staff was scrambling to create a proper greeting for their arrival. A photo boat and Mystic’s own whaleboat set out to escort them up the river.  The fog had completely cleared by now, the sun was hot and steamy on the grounds, and dozens of classic wooden boats were cruising by the Seaport.

As the whaleboat finally approached, crowds on the shore let out a cheer. The whaleboat arrived at its new home.

If you weren’t able to be onshore to welcome them, click here to witness the spirit of their accomplishment.

Apprentices and the crew of Advent spent the evening celebrating and were especially acknowledged at a Friends of Mystic cocktail party, hosted by President Steve White. Among the other whaleboat building shops and schools, the crew shared anecdotes of their trip and received many congratulations from Mystic staff and friends.


The whaleboat is docked at Middle Pier and can be viewed throughout the weekend at the WoodenBoat Show.

The expedition succeeded, buoyed by the support of a tremendous extended community.  Boatloads of thanks go out to all of the hosts along the way, from Maine to Mystic.

The Apprenticeshop is a school for traditional boatbuilding and seamanship, now enrolling for CORE – Concepts in Wooden Boatbuilding, a nine-month curriculum intended to prepare the student for an entry level position in boatbuilding.  The course starts with an expedition on Penobscot Bay, led by Bryan McCarthy.

ADVANCED – New Construction and Restoration is a nine-month apprenticeship program for builders with some experience.

The school has rolling enrollment for  INTENSIVE, a three–month program, where students complete a solo boat build.

For more information about any of our boatbuilding programs visit here or call (207)594-1800.





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