Thorvald's Grave
Contact Era
The Shipyard
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Icelander Recaptures Viking Visit
September 5, 2000
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Page 1: Vikings on the Horizon

Click to read about Thorvald's Grave

Icelander The Icelander was right where it was supposed to be as we buzzed past Whaleback light toward the 2K marker at the mouth of the Piscataqua. The hand-made replica of an 870 AD Viking ship had been 3,500 miles since its June 17 departure from Reykjavik harbor. The dream of boat-builder and captain Gunnar Marel -- to sail in the wake of Leif Erickson 1,000 years later - is a realty. Yet the small Viking ship seemed dreamlike on the horizon, just a stick of a mast and a crude wooden hull. We swung our borrowed lobster boat in for a closer look.

The flotilla was small this day after Labor Day, just us, a welcoming boat, the large following ship from Iceland and the Port Authority boat bearing a cameraman from Chronicle. Cool air, ice blue sea, and no tourists in sight. We followed the Viking replica to its first United States port en route to Boston and Washington DC for a millennium celebration of early Viking exploration. Using only the cheapest digital technology, we recorded the event for posterity. Past Whaleback, approaching the old Navy Prison, the Icelander crew paused to raise the heavy primitive sail. Few onlookers were lucky enough to catch this haunting photo op. If Vikings did visit the Piscataqua River, the scene would have looked much like this - with the addition of a few dozen Norse oarsmen. So scroll down and follow along. - JDR

Icelander visit

Icelander visit

Icelander visit

Icelander visit

CONTINUE THE VIKING TOUR

Disposable photos by J. Dennis Robinson
Copyright © 2000 SeacoastNH.com. All rights reserved.


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