On the Hjørdis: North House Fall Sailing on Lake Superior

Aug 15, 2021 | people/passions

Hjørdis will be sailing daily until October 3! Bookings are available now!

The flagship of the Grand Marais Harbor, Hjørdis shares the name of the mythical Norse goddess of war. Take a trip on this 50’ traditionally-rigged steel schooner and gain access to both the largest lake in the world and experience Grand Marais as it was approached in the centuries before Highway 61 — from the water.

 

On the Hjørdis

The History of Hjørdis

The story of Hjørdis starts in a backyard near Detroit, Michigan in the early 1970s. Kenneth Woodward, a General Motors machinist and general foreman, bought plans from naval architect Thomas Colvin to build his Gazelle design, a 42’ junk-rigged schooner. Seven years and over 6,000 hours later, Kenneth splashed the boat and named it after his mother: Hjørdis. He and his wife Katey spent the next decade living aboard and sailing Hjørdis off the Florida coast.

Fast forward to 1997 when Hjørdis was sold and eventually ended up on Lake Superior on the docks of a fledgling folk school. Given the rich history of schooners on Lake Superior, the North House board saw the intriguing possibilities of having a “floating classroom,” and the Hjørdis became a part of North House.

Ken Woodward with Hjordis

 

Pricing and Details

SEPTEMBER SAILS: Sails will be approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes. The rate is $60/passenger. The minimum number of passengers is 3; you will have the option to pay for an additional passenger if the minimum is not met.There are additional fees of approximately $3 per ticket built-in to our booking system. Sails depart on the hour starting at 10am.

SUNSET SAILS: Sunset sails are approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes. The rate is $65/passenger. The minimum number of passengers is 3; you will have the option to pay for an additional passenger if the minimum is not met.There are additional fees of approximately $3 per ticket built-in to our booking system. Departure times vary based on date of reservation and sunset time.

Reservations

Reservations can be made online up to one hour before the scheduled sail. Beyond that, call North House for availability. Per Coast Guard regulations, we can accommodate up to 6 guests per sail. Regardless of age (2 months old to 102 years old), each passenger counts towards our 6 guest limit, and therefore must be registered.

Cancellation Policy

A credit card is required at the time of your reservation. Your credit card will be authorized at the time of your purchase, and then charged automatically on the day of your sail. If you do not cancel your reservation more than 48 hours in advance of your scheduled sail, and the schooner heads out, your card will be charged the full amount.

Our captains reserve the right to cancel a sail due to weather, equipment failure, or failure to meet the minimum number of guests. If we do cancel a sail, your card will not be charged. We will do our best to notify you ahead of time that your sail is cancelled, if possible, by phone and email. If you do not get a call from us, assume that your sail is going ahead as scheduled.

Check-in and What to Bring

  • Please arrive 15 minutes before your sail is scheduled to depart. There is an outdoor waiting area on the dock under the timber frame. The Captain/Crew will meet you there for the check-in procedure—do not check-in at the Yellow House.
  • Please dress warmly—out on the lake, the temperature is usually 10 degrees cooler than on land. Dress in layers and bring a jacket. Sunglasses, a winter hat, mittens, and scarf are recommended.
  • You are welcome to bring snacks or beverages along. Water is a great idea.
  • If you are bringing a young person who weighs less than 50 lbs, you will need to provide your own PFD.
  • Dogs do not make good crew members, and are therefore not allowed on the schooner.
  • Please bring a mask that is comfortable to wear for the duration of the sail.

Sailing Courses: Our regular courses provide another great way to experience the Hjørdis while building your sailing skills. Our array of sailing classes range from navigation to ropework, basic sailing to multi-day sail training trips to the Apostle Islands and Isle Royale.

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