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Travel Adventure

Rowing the Northwest Passage

Adventure, Fear, and Awe in a Rising Sea

by (author) Kevin Vallely

Greystone Books Ltd
Initial publish date
Oct 2017
Adventure, Extreme Sports, Polar Regions
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2017
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Sep 2017
    List Price

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"Vallely transports the reader to places few will ever go: the very edges of the earth and of human endurance."
—Evan Solomon

In this gripping first-hand account, four seasoned adventurers navigate a sophisticated, high-tech rowboat across the Northwest Passage. One of the "last firsts" remaining in the adventure world, this journey is only possible because of the dramatic impacts of global warming in the high Arctic, which provide an ironic opportunity to draw attention to the growing urgency of climate change.

Along the way, the team repeatedly face life-threatening danger from storms unparalleled in their ferocity and unpredictability and bears witness to unprecedented changes in the Arctic habitat and inhabitants, while weathering gale-force vitriol from climate change deniers who have taken to social media to attack them and undermine their efforts.

About the author

Kevin Vallely is an architect, adventurer and happily married father of two. He is a member of the Explorer’s Club and was an Explorer’s Club Flag recipient. In 2009 he and two teammates broke the world record for the fastest unsupported trek from the edge of the Antarctic continent to the Geographic South Pole.

Kevin Vallely's profile page

Editorial Reviews

A rousing combination of science and adventure in the Arctic. Booklist

…harrowing but beautiful… as much a history lesson and thrilling travelogue as it is an ecological warning. —Publishers Weekly

"Climate change is happening so rapidly in the Arctic that it is absolutely essential that people go there and intelligently record what they see, as Kevin Vallely so compellingly does in Rowing the Northwest Passage."— Peter Wadhams, author of A Farewell to Ice

"A thrilling adventure tale in which each hard mile not only reveals the strength of the human spirit but also hammers home the hard truths of climate change."—Cameron Dueck, author of The New Northwest Passage

"Vallely transports the reader to places few will ever go: the very edges of the earth and of human endurance." —Evan Solomon, host of CTV's Question Period

"A must-read for any Arctic or Northwest Passage enthusiast or for anyone concerned about our planet's future in the face of global warming."—Captain Kenneth K. Burton, Executive Director, Vancouver Maritime Museum

"A compelling page-turner of an adventure story. Rowing the Northwest Passage gave me a greater appreciation of the Arctic wilderness—just not as a place of brutal beauty, but also as a crucial player in the Earth’s ecosystem." —Roz Savage, Guinness World Record-setting ocean rower

"Nothing stirs the imagination of Canadians in song and story like the Northwest Passage . From Robert Service to Stan Rogers, the Northwest Passage has been conjured as impossibly unnavigable and laden with peril. But Kevin Vallely set out to make the passage in one season - and rowing! What this modern saga of the Northwest Passage brings to light is the new image of the passage as canary in the coal mine. A warning sign of vast planetary changes - caused by us - and threatening our future."—Elizabeth May

"Rowing the Northwest Passage combines a fantastic tale of adventure with an important message on the state of our environment. Vallely's writing keeps the reader engaged with beautiful descriptions of the people, landscapes and wildlife he encounters. Overall, this is a must-read for anyone who enjoys the outdoors, or just a well-written book."—Colin Angus, author & National Geographic Adventurer of the Year

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