Expedition Uummaa - The west coast of Greenland on a Hobie Cat

Create a notification for "Cruising"

We love sailing and independent Arctic adventures. Greenland in particular fascinates us. After more than 15 expeditions, the high-latitude environment has become familiar. We have each completed two coastal sailing trips here.
For us, the true meaning of a sports catamaran trek, apart from safety and agility is being in maximum contact with the elements. The boat has no cabin for shelter and the living space, the trampoline, is only 20 cm above the water. These contingencies place us permanently close to the sea, the wind, the cold, and the humidity. This may seem a little extreme to some, but for us, it is a deliberate choice: to be in harmony with the environment. At a time when these landscapes are accessible from the deck of a cruise ship, or soon thanks to 3D glasses, we take the opposite view, the opposite trajectory.
We named our expedition “Uummaa”, after the Inuit term that designates “vibration”, “life force”, or even the “heartbeat” we feel when in contact with the elements. We love the sound of this word, which evokes both the delight of being privileged witnesses to the beauty of our planet, and the human strength that emerges in these isolated regions.

In the summer of 2022, an aborted Northwest passage forced us to improvise a change of course: direction the Baltic Sea for a 15-day Hobie Cat trip in the Stockholm archipelago. This experience was a revelation. It confirmed the advantages of a coastal trek on a sports catamaran: safety, agility, freedom and, above all, contact! Despite the vulnerability of its plastic hulls, paradoxically and thanks to its shallow draft and our extreme sailing trip, this type of catamaran allowed us to navigate in safety. In a region where many areas remain uncharted, navigating visually among the reefs and icebergs is safer. The shallow draft makes it possible to seek wild shelter in the isolated coves inaccessible to keelboats, by covering the final meters by paddling. The catamaran’s lightness allowed us to pull onto the shore and easily unload our numerous bags, and, a significant advantage, to bivouac or explore with peace of mind! In short, to fully enjoy the nomadic experience. Still with two people and after unloading our bags, we could barely pull it a meter or two over sand or small rocks. Beyond that, we took the risk of damaging the hulls.

Legs of 1 to 4 days’ sailing

We were excited by the idea of sailing along the country’s west coast. Its considerable advantages allowed us to achieve the balance we sought in our expedition: sometimes being in the great outdoors, sometimes in contact with the Greenlanders.
The villages are ideally spaced, offering one-to-four-day stages of wild navigation. The presence of at least one supermarket assured us of regular supplies, thus avoiding food overload. 4G coverage within 10 km (6 mi) allowed us to check the weather forecast regularly and communicate easily.
Our original itinerary should have seen us start from Nanortalik, in southern ...

Log in

Password forgotten ?


Subscribe to Multihulls World and get exclusive benefits.


Share this article