In today’s spotted we bring you an image of BigLift Shipping’s Happy Rover that became the first heavy lift vessel ever to have sailed the Northern Sea Route (NSR) and the Northwest Passage within one season.
The 12,950 dwt Happy Rover is also the first vessel to use the shortest of the Northwest Passage routes, via Fury and Hecla Strait, as a transit trade lane between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, according to BigLift.
The voyage started on August 11, 2016, when the 1997-built Happy Rover left Zeebrugge, Belgium, for Sabetta, Russia.
After a stop in Sabetta, the vessel continued its voyage through the Northern Sea Route towards the East to reach Ulsan, Korea. In Ulsan, the ship loaded modules for Burns Harbour in the Great Lakes, Canada.
“While sailing Great Circle towards the Pacific Ocean it became clear that the route through the Bering Strait and the Northwest Passage, through Fury and Hecla Strait were a good alternative,” BigLift said.
The Happy Rover arrived subsequently in Montreal to enter the Great Lakes for the discharge of its cargo.
The Northwest Passage is a route connecting the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans through the Arctic Ocean, along the north coast of North America through waterways in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Only vessels with a high ice class, such as the Happy Rover that was built with Finnish Ice class 1A, can enter this area.
The NSR is a shipping route lying east of Novaya Zemlya and running along the Russian Arctic coast from the Kara Sea, along Siberia, to the Bering Strait.
Image Courtesy: BigLift Shipping