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Modern-Built Viking Ship Now Sailing from Norway to the United States

(Photo: Draken Harald Hårfagre)

This ship is the Harald Fairhair, named in honor of the first king of unified Norway. Its 33-man crew has modern navigational tools, but are otherwise dependent upon 10th Century technology.

That's risky because the Harald Fairhair is attempting an extraordinary journey: crossing the Atlantic Ocean. Captain Björn Ahlander describes the journey and his ship in The Local:

And time is of the essence. Following in the historical tailwind of Leif Eriksson, the Viking thought to have discovered America centuries before Christopher Columbus, the ship has a long journey ahead, taking a route via Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland before it finally drops anchor in the United States.

"We've got one month because the only gap, if you don't want to battle low pressure and harsh winds, is May. That's your chance to make it across," Ahlander told the Swedish news agency TT on Monday. […]

An impressive 35 metres long, eight metres wide and with a mast height of 24 metres, Harald Hårfagre is the world's biggest longship built in modern times. Sponsored by Norwegian businessman Sigurd Aase, it was completed in 2012.

The planned launch on Sunday was delayed, but the official Facebook page reports that the longship is now on its way to Iceland. After Iceland comes Greenland, Canada, then the Great Lakes as far as Duluth, Minnesota.

-via Ace of Spades HQ

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