Hi. My name is Olivier. Visitors or sponsors, welcome to my site. You are here for some serious stories of Arctic sailing between 2017 and 2019. You will witness our preparations for a Nord West Passage from Est to West in the summer of 2018. We failed! We started again in 2019. And this time we succeeded landing in Port Townsend September the 16 of 2019.
This is the story of one of a kind boat…..
The idea and the concept “ Breskell ” were born in the early 1984 from the close association of an architect, ma dad …
and my experience of the craftmanship as a shipwright. I combined that with 10 years of sailing experiences . At that time, I was voyaging with my former boat “Breur Bihan” .
which I drew and built myself when I was 19 years old. She was made of four layers of mahogany cold molded glued with “Resorsinol”.
Breskell is a much bigger boat. A real and confortable passagemaker.
The hull of Breskell is built over laminated frames spaced every 50 cm. Each frame is 50 x 60 m/m .
On the outside, layers of fiberglass clothes with epoxy cover protect the wood against abrasion.
Breskell is built of one layer of “ Niangon “ mahogany strip planking and 2 layer of “ grand Bassam” Mahogany 5m/m each, crossed at 45 degrees diagonal and cold molded with West System Epoxy.
The work started in March 1985. In September, the hull was done and turned over;
the deck side up.
In June 1986, Breskell was launched for the first time.
Breskell has a center board allowing her to go in shallow water, up to 4 feet, like the Chesapeake bay or the intra coastal waterway. But its 10’ down centerboard makes her a very seaworthy boat and comfortable at sea.
She is also built with twin rudders angled at 15 degrees. This specific design allows her to keep a strait course when sailing fast on the open sea.
That’s Breskell version 01.
My DEEP BLUE BRESKELL
Then we improved it during our Virginia stay.
That’s Breskell version 02. My “YELLOW BRESKELL”. We kept the twin angled rudders…
but we added a deck roof. modified the keel…
and added some nice features. Do you like this personalized epoxy made wheel ?
It worked perfectly with my windvane during a long crossing.
What about the frame supporting my wind generator and my solar panels? Epoxy made also…
Back to the water again
Birth of new Breskell
Nice and yellow
From mountains back to sea
Going up north
Draft: 4′ to 10′
Displacement: 12 Tonnes
Engine: Perkins 84 HP , Model 4236
Since Breskell was built, we have been sailing from France to the Caribbean islands via Africa and United States back and forth .
With Breskell we made three Atlantic crossings:
one from Senegal to Martinique , one, my wife from New York to France via the Azores, the last one, single-handed, up to Chesapeake bay via St Thomas, US Virgin Islands. Here is a nice remembering of my solitary Atlantic crossing.
Solitary crossing in 2014
Full sail under the command of his happy captain
My father design
Happy days under the trades winds
My swinging ham...
...beating the drum
Crying about the lost of my beloved cat
Europe to the USA
Up to the Chesapeake...
My nice boatyard after a wonderful crossing
In the summer of 2017, I sailed Breskell to the Arctic via St John Newfoundland and up to Disko bay.
Our initial journey was rounding the shallow water of Cape Parry and sail directly to Nome in Alaska. An unexpected encounter with a vicious growler changed our plans. Sailing in Arctic water, you adapt!
Emergency repair at sea. Whatever the weather, your comfort, your fatigue or your personal timetable, keep a sharp look out at all time. A magnificent nature rules here and doesn’t tolerate any human weakness.
August 20th. Cambridge Bay fades behind us. Our camp 4, in Nome, Alaska, lays 1700 miles (ca. 2,736 km)away. To officially qualify for a Est- West North West Passage, we must first cross the Bering Strait.