Scottish Maritime Museum (Denny Tank) , Castle Street, Dumbarton G82 1QS
The Scottish Kayak Expedition to North West Norway was the result of two years of planning and fundraising after Jim Breen, Angus Mathieson, Bill Turnbull and Peter Wilson found themselves storm-bound on an island off the West coast of Scotland in 1978 and made a pact to embark on Scotland’s first major sea kayaking expedition together.
Setting off from Harstad in North West Norway at 8.30am on Tuesday 1 July 1980, the four friends paddled 394 miles (634 kilometres) as they circumnavigated the two island groups of Lofoten and Vesterålen in North West Norway, 200 miles within the Arctic Circle.
Here, between Lofoten Point and the island of Mosken, where the tidal currents are forced through the shallows creating a fast series of eddies and whirlpools, they made the first ever crossing of one of the world’s largest whirlpools, the ‘Maelstrom’ or, as it is sometimes known, the ‘Moskenstraumen’.
Discover the full story including how the team faced not only the challenges of the Maelstrom, but also very severe magnetic anomalies, bland, repetitive meals, only alleviated by occasional treats of Angel Delight and Cabana chocolate, food poisoning and an unexpected heatwave!