named for Queen Maud of Norway, was a ship built for Roald
Amundsen for his second expedition to the Arctic. Designed for
his intended voyage through the Northeast Passage, the vessel
was specially built at a shipyard in Asker, Norway on the
The Maud was launched in June 1916 and christened by Roald
Amundsen by crushing a chunk of ice against her bow:
It is not my intention to dishonor the glorious grape, but
already now you shall get the taste of your real environment.
For the ice you have been built, and in the ice you shall stay
most of your life, and in the ice you shall solve your tasks.
With the permission of our queen, I christen you: Maud.
Career and fate
She lived up to her christening, for she lies still in the ice.
Whereas other vessels used in Amundsen's polar explorations,
Gjøa and Fram, have been preserved at the maritime museum at
Bygdøy, Maud had a more rugged fate.
After sailing through the Northeast Passage, which did not go as
planned and took six years between 1918 and 1924, she ended up
in Nome, Alaska and in August 1925 was sold on behalf of
Amundsen's creditors in Seattle, Washington.
The buyer was the Hudson's Bay Company which renamed her Baymaud.
She was to be used as a supply vessel for Company outposts in
Canada's western Arctic. However, in the winter of 1926 she was
frozen in the ice at Cambridge Bay, where she sank in 1930.
The ship now lies just off the shore in the bay, across the
inlet from Cambridge Bay's former Hudson's Bay Company store.
Nearby is the Cambridge Bay LORAN Tower built in 1947.
Prior to her final voyage the Baymaud was given a refit in
Vancouver, British Columbia. The work was supervised by Tom
Hallidie, who later went on to design the RCMP vessel St. Roch,
based on the Maud.
In 1990 the ship was sold by the Hudson's Bay Company to Asker
with the expectation that she would be returned to the town.
Although a Cultural Properties Export permit was issued, the
price tag to repair and move the ship was 230 million kroner
($43,200,000) and the permit expired.
In 2011 Norwegian company Tandberg Eiendom AS in the project
Maud Returns Home announced a plan to return the Maud to Norway.
They intend to build a new museum in Vollen, Asker to house the
ship and say that they have already purchased a barge to move
it. Concern about the plan has come from the community of
Cambridge Bay, Parks Canada, the Government of Nunavut, the
International Polar Heritage Committee as well as some people in
Asker. Moving the ship would require another export permit from
the federal government. On 15 December 2011, it was announced
that the Government of Canada had declined to issue an export
permit. The refusal was given due to the lack of "a full
archeological study". The decision was reversed on appeal in
March 2012, and salvaging is expected to start in 2014, after a
survey. The salvage operation is under way in the summer of
2015, and a plan to return the hull to Norway in the summer of