Before we set sail and leave Grise Fiord, I am invited by the Hamlet to say goodbye. There are many of our friends, gifts, speeches, each one higher than the other, hugs, tears... "Thank you for giving us another look at science", "Aboard our little boats, we feel safer when Vagabond is around", "Come back soon with the whole family". Very emotional moments.
Loic Sanchez arrived three days before departure, which allowed us to set up the water filtration system to collect environmental DNA. The aim is to better predict the impact of climate change on fish populations. The DNA collected in the filters makes it possible to identify the species present in the area during the 30 minutes before sampling. Our friend Sébastien Roubinet is also taking part in this unprecedented scientific program and we chat together every day, while he is on an incredible expedition!
France, Leni, Ana and Yves flew back south, also I'm happy to welcome my four Breton teammates: Marie, Christophe, Ronan and Yves. Time to get our last food supplies, fresh water and fuel: ready to head south.
The ice is blocking the northeast of Devon Island, we are struggling to get out of Jones Sound. And darkness is back and it is snowing! The crew is adapting quickly, the watches are intense, we reach open water the next day. Here we are in Baffin Bay.
First stop at Clyde River where I find my old friend Philip. He provides us with engine oil and we share our diving memories!
Three days later we have a very friendly time in Qikiqtarjuaq where I lived with my family between 2013 and 2016. I'm so happy to see all our friends again, I keep sharing news for almost two days, without forgetting to climb the hill overlooking the village with my teammates.
The next stop, in northern Labrador, is due to the bad weather. Luckily, we find a good shelter for two days in a magnificent region. A polar bear, caribous, lots of blueberries and other berries that we can even pick up under the northern lights!
On September 21, Loic, Ronan and Yves disembark at Nain, in the middle of the night. Time for them to fly back to France. Vagabond set off again while the weather is fine.
Last stopover in Cartwright, still in Labrador, to let Fiona pass! Another four days for Vagabond to round Newfoundland and reach Saint-Pierre and Miquelon on October 1 at 1am, after sailing 3,200 nautical miles (5,900 km) from Grise Fiord.