Vágur Shipyard, Weaving School, a dead bird, and the Mayor’s party that we weren’t invited to.

Day 15 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today we were in Vágur!

First thing, we headed out to the shipyard for a tour with Gudmundur. To start us off, he had two plates for sampling: one with sliced pilot whale blubber, and the other with dried slices of cod fish. I, obviously did not try any!

This is the closest I’ve been to crossing “touch a whale” off my bucket list… but as it’s a dead hunk of whale, it’s perhaps also the furthest away I’ve been from achieving this goal…

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But it was interesting to hear Gudmundur’s opinions on the Grind. I can’t say I can ever condone the brutal slaughtering of any animal, but my abject horror at these events has been minimally diminished.

Gudmundur described himself as “Chairman of the Grind” which basically meant he is one of the many who oversee the events, and ensure everything is happening safely, and humanely. The older generation of men, teach the younger generation of boys (yup, no girls here. It’s a man thing. I think the more recent hunts have been more inclusive, but generally it’s an all boys club. Good, quite frankly. You keep this to yourself little men. If killing majestic creatures, that you have no real reason to kill anymore (yes, I do understand that in the past this killing was a necessity, but it is no longer), makes you feel like you have a bigger dick, then do you think you could just not? Go and have a wank and chill yourself out. That whale doesn’t really need to be sliced up by your idiot ass. Anyway… I was trying to be less judgemental wasn’t I? Yeah… it’s not working. Especially when I know how anti-feminist, anti-inclusive, anti-LGBT, anti-different a lot of the culture is in the Faroes, it makes it harder to be accepting of something like this. Don’t get me wrong, everybody we met was lovely. I had a great time. But there is a lot of internalised stuff going on there, that is fairly unsettling). At least they are now killing the whales humanely. That’s something. Although, I got the impression that was more because they are being watched on a world stage, and not because they actually care about the whale, but at least it’s a step in the right direction. All animal killing is bloody and gory… just most of the time you don’t see it. The only reason people care about this more than other things is because it’s out in the open. I don’t see the same people who are angry about this, protesting at their local battery farm, at their local slaughter house. Of course not, the meat I eat comes in a vacuum-packed bag, so it must have been killed humanely right? Sure. But it was still killed. It still bled. It still suffered to get to you. But you didn’t see it, so it didn’t count. I might sound like a self-righteous vegetarian, but it bothers me that the same people who get upset about one thing, couldn’t care less about another. I’m not saying don’t eat meat. You do what you want where that is concerned. But if you get upset about one animal being killed for food, you have to upset about all the others one too. At least the amount of whales being killed is dropping each year, hopefully soon it will be firmly at zero. One small thing that I actually thought was quite nice about the Grind (I know, who thought I’d ever describe whale killing as nice!!) is the community aspect of it. Everyone gets their share. Those who kill for their community bring the flesh back and divide it equally amongst everyone. From young to old, everyone gets the same amount, even those in care homes get their piece. And the eating of the meat is now only done at special occasions, and it’s a real treat for them to have it. Good for the whales, hopefully less will be killed. And good for the people… the mercury content of these animals is only getting higher… which is a whole other problem!!

Whale killing is bad. Simple as that. In my opinion. But, saying that, I would advise you to gather all the facts before stewing into a ball of rage. And if you do want to support efforts to get this banned from the Faroes, do not support Sea Sheppard. They are fucking idiots, and are not helping their cause even one little bit. Speak up, but do so with knowledge and good words… unlike my rant above!!



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Gudmundur showed us around the shipyard. The tools they had were fantastic! It smelled like wood shavings and paint in there… my favourite!

I found it quite sweet and engaging that he described building a boat as building part of himself, an imbuing his soul into it. As an artist, I totally get that! It’s sad that beautiful wooden ships like The Johanna are few in number now, and are not being built like they used to be. The knowledge of how to create like that will die out with the few people who know how.

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We then walked along the shore, having a nosey at all the boats around there, and peeking into little boathouses to see the vessels within…

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After the shipyard, a few of us headed along to the weaving school. One of the teachers, Karen, was there to meet us, and she told us a little of the history of the weaving in her town. When looms came to the Faroes, Vágur had one loom for the whole village! and women would queue for a chance to use it. The weaving school was opened 10 years ago, and they’ve slowly built up the number of looms, and cultivated a full teaching programme for students of the craft.


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We waited with Karen while she waited for her husband to pick her up, and were treated to a small chain dance with her! It was a really beautiful experience. We all linked hands at the little bus stop, she taught us the steps: two the left, one to the right, and she chanted as we moved as one in our little circle. Perfect.

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Tonight, our boat had been nicked by the Mayor to host a party. We weren’t invited, so had to hang around town until midnight (which turned out to be 2am!). We loitered in the local hotel restaurant…

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I went for a wee wander with another girl along to the edge of town while the sun was setting.

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A beautiful walk to the end the day… oh wait… I can’t go to bed yet because there are people partying in it!!

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We eventually got there! and managed to shoo the drunk people away from our bunk!

Night night beer soaked Johanna.

More to come soon…

Chloe out.


Cliff-Walking in Sumba

Day 14 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today a few of us went walking from the tiny town of Sumba, through some fields, and around a stunning cliff face… and almost making it to Lopra before taking the bus back to Vágur!

But first a good morning selfie… or two!!

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Onward to Sumba…..

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This guy was brilliant! He talked to us for a while about the sheep they keep here. Those little lambs next to him lost their mama :( but he is caring for them while they grow up. (photo pinched from Mhairi Law)

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I’m not sure what this stuff was… but I could quite easily see it growing under the sea… perhaps encrusting the crown of a swimming mermaid…

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Corseted fence?!

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Sea pinks!!


That little town you can see in the distance is Lopra… with the long winding road down… we didn’t quite make it all the way, and had to run down the grassy hills to catch the bus!!


A beautiful spot to stop for lunch. I love sitting somewhere where I can dangle my feet off the edge.

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We caught the bus in time! and headed back to Vágur.

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Night night Johanna.

See you again tomorrow :)

Stay tuned…

Chloe out.

Hvalba & Harbours

Day 13 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today we were wandering around the small town of Hvalba.

A small group of us had wanted to visit the only coalmine on the islands, which was located just a little outside of Hvalba… but sadly when we wandered into town in search of information, there was none to be found! and we couldn’t quite figure out how to reach the place. So… we went for a walk instead.

And a beautiful walk it was, well worth sticking around for.


Yup. That is the little island we saw the other day. We’re now just a lot further to the left of where we were yesterday.

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This was a wonderfully odd little farm just on the way to the harbour! full of weird little animals…

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I walked down this pretty little harbour, and sat on the edge of the rocks to eat my lunch… after being chased by sheep who wanted by sandwich!!


Finally a walk along the beach to collect some more bits and pieces for jewellery making…

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And back to The Johanna… tonight sailing off back to Vágur for a few days….. but first a bit of cheeky climbing up the rigging for a couple of our crew!!

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And where would I be without some sexy pictures of the ship’s ropes and riggings. Love me some ropework ;)

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And off we go!!

Today’s journey was very all over the place and not very calm at all! A lot of us were very rather ill by the end!! We had 50 knot winds battering us about, and rather big swells as a result! I still hadn’t figured out my strategy, and felt like total shit by the end of this journey!!

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This was the end of my photos from that day. When the boat was tipping enough to allow water in, and I couldn’t move an inch without feeling like I wanted to hurl, it was time to put the camera away!!

But luckily Lea Kannar was filming a timelapse of this journey… if you follow this link (it may not work as I think it’s a private FB, but still worth a nosey if you can!).

More to come soon!

Stay tuned…

Chloe out.

Our First Sailing Day! Vágur to Tvøroyri

Day 12 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today was our first day of sailing! from Vágur to Tvøroyri.

Look how happy we are :D

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Leaving Vágur. This was a short, calm journey, and it left me so optimistic to my seasick levels… how wrong I could be!!


Docking in Tvøroyri.

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Our first stop was the History and Maritime Museum of Tvøroyri which was kindly opened up for us to have a nosey around.

The building had an unusual history, it had been everything from a house, to a police station, to a doctor’s surgery, and now is a museum housing artefacts, photographs, and information from the history of the town.


Doctors used to really like hacking away at lady parts back in the day… :O


Traditional Faroese dress. The jewellery strikes me as quite Celtic in its nature. I wonder if there are any common routes there?

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After a quick bite to eat and some stroking of a lovely fat cat outside the pub, we headed off on a walk around the mountains to the valley of Hvannhagi.

Briefly stopping to admire this buoy! Isn’t it fantastic?! It was huge!!!


Damn I look sexy in trousers and a hat……. :|



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Majestic horse is majestic.

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I’m not quite sure what this stuff was. It looked like liquid metal. I guess it must have been some form of oil seeping up from the earth. A fairy pond shimmering with magic.

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I made it to the top!! And was rewarded with a stunning stunning view…

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Accidentally dramatically edited photos!

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That little line in the image above was the “path” we followed to reach the lake below. It was a teeny tiny path, no wider than one foot’s worth, and all over the place… a little treacherous! but worth it for the views.


A truly beautiful walk.


Johanna was flying a new flag when we arrived back to the dock!!

Yup. That is sheep’s wool!

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Found bracelet.



We sailed away again this evening, heading for Hvalba.

I was really rather ill on this crossing. I hadn’t figured out my strategy yet. Seasickness curse!!! But I still managed to snap a few photos of our journey (selfie pre-sickness!!).

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Safely docked for the night!!

See you tomorrow in our adventures around Hvalba.

Stay tuned.

Chloe out.

The Johanna & Fish Filleting

Day 11 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today we were still in Vágur, and this morning we were hanging around the town waiting for The Johanna to be ready for us.

I pottered about the shops in the morning, had a wander with some of the group, and then headed down to the harbour, where we met Bjirni (I think that is how it was spelt!! his name was pronounced bee-yer-ni… ish!)… or Santa, as we ended up calling him! He is a fisherman, and would later be joining us on some parts of our journey.

Seeing as The Faroe Islands is well-renowned for it’s fish, we had been searching out fresh fish for dinner… and found some!

Santa even let us fillet and sample the catch!… although I merely spectated!!

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Finally! The Johanna was ready for us!!

Isn’t she beautiful?

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Sadly, she is now engine powered and no longer relies on her beautiful red sails.

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That’s my bunk! the one on the bottom left. And below is a wee video of what it was like inside….. yes…. we were basically sleeping in cupboards! which involved a fair amount of nighttime and morning gymnastics to get in and out of!



Sailing tomorrow! Wooo!!

Stay tuned…

Chloe out.

Vágur & World War II

Day 10 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.

Today we packed up our stuff in Tòrshavn and headed out on our journey to Vágur, where we would (eventually!) be meeting our boat.

Vágur is on the southernmost island of Suðuroy, which we travelled down to by ferry from Tòrshavn. The ride over was beautifully calm, and as we were on it for a couple of hours, I managed to get a good bit of journalling and design doodling done.


Unfortunately, when we arrived in Vágur, The Johanna wasn’t quite ready for us… so, it was another night in a hostel. It did give us some time to explore the town though…

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We came across this wonderful little museum which had a weird and wonderful collection of items and photographs from Vágur during World War II.

The Faroe Islands, Faroese ships and Faroese crew were of vast importance to Great Britain during World War II (1940-1945). Most of the British ships were in the early years of the war rebuilt to warships and for the same reason there were few British fishing vessels in operation. The demand for fish in Britain was large, and here the Faroese ships and crews came to play an important role.

Each week Faroese ships transported 100s of tonnes of fish to the British market. The fish was transported from Iceland and the Faroe Islands to Britain, mostly to harbourd in the north of Britain. All in all Faroese ships made 2.354 trip to Britain with 152.000 tonnes of fish to a value of 198 million Danish kroners.

The voyages through the battle zones in the North Atlantic did though have their high prize. During the years of World War II 205 Faroese men were casualties of war acts on the sea and 39 ships were lost. Of these 9 ships were from Vágur, of which 4 were lost with all hands. 27 men lost their lives with these ships, 14 from Vágur.

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Sadly there wasn’t much information about these, but I loved these photographs of a Scottish regiment that stayed here during World War II.

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These model boats were all made by the curator of the museum, Poul Niclassen, who spent years crafting these vessels that from Vágur that were used in the war, in his little home workshop.

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After the museum we wandered through the town a little more.

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Yup! that is a dried up fish head lying in the port!

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Dad! this sea mine photo is for you!!

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Planning our route with the Johanna! in our cosy little hostel.

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This sock was knitted by Lynne Reed on her travels around the Faroes!! photo by Nils Aksnes.

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More to come soon!!

Stay tuned!

Chloe out.