Basque Whalers

A reenactment of a traditional Basque open-boat voyage
Basque Whaler movie trailer


In 2006, a crew of six Basque volunteers led by Xabier Agote (profiled in WB No, 244) made a voyage in a traditional Basque boat. They journeyed from Ottawa to Québec to the Gaspé Peninsula to Labrador and Newfoundland, retracing similar passages by their forebears down the St. Lawrence River to the Atlantic in search of cod and whales. The crew often rowed ten hours at a stretch, and sailed in what were very challenging conditions for a small open boat at sea. An extraordinary film tells the story of that voyage, and you can view its trailer here.

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