BC Ferries’ Northern Sea Wolf, the vessel acquired for the new route from Port Hardy – Bella Coola, and named through a community engagement process, transited the Panama Canal today, bringing it one step closer to its arrival in B.C. waters later this month. The vessel departed from Athens, Greece, on Nov. 3 for the 10,097 nautical mile journey to B.C.
The next stop is Manzanillo, Mexico and from there, the ship will continue to sail up the west coast of North America to British Columbia. Customers can track the ship’s progress virtually, including course, position and speed at vesselfinder.com.
“The Northern Sea Wolf is making excellent progress on her journey home to B.C. Mid-life upgrade work will be contracted to a local shipyard in B.C. in the coming weeks,” said Mark Wilson, BC Ferries’ Vice President, Strategy and Community Engagement. “We look forward to welcoming the ship into the BC Ferries fleet and readying her for summer 2018 service on the north coast.”
The Northern Sea Wolf was built in 2000 and will accommodate a minimum of 35 vehicles and 150 passengers and crew. Upon the ship’s arrival in British Columbia, a local shipyard will perform a mid-life upgrade, which includes dry docking, overhauling the propulsion main engines and gearboxes, installing new electrical generators, upgrading the switchboards, installing new navigational equipment, and upgrading shipboard safety equipment and systems. Crew and passenger areas and amenities will also be updated. BC Ferries anticipates awarding the shipyard contract in early December.
Sailings will depart from Port Hardy and Bella Coola five days per week during peak season. Fares for this route will be consistent with the fares on the existing indirect service. The vessel will also provide year-round service to Bella Bella, Shearwater and Ocean Falls. Reservations for summer 2018 on this route and other northern routes are now open for booking. As these are popular routes, BC Ferries recommends customers reserve well in advance of their planned travel. For the schedule and additional information, please visit bcferries.com/about/projects.