Northwest PassageSeptember 4, 2015 - September 23, 2015
Especially chosen for this voyage, our team of expert leaders and lecturers serves to bring a comprehensive educational component to your adventure through lectures, guided excursions, and daily recaps.
Mike Messick (Expedition Leader)
Mike was raised in Switzerland and began working in expedition travel during a summer break from college. He graduated in 1985 from Skidmore College with a degree in bio/psychology. One of the best expedition leaders in the business, Mike embarked on a full-time career in adventure travel shortly after graduation and has since visited more than 170 countries around the world. Mike has conducted research at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in its onshore laboratory and aboard one of its research vessels. He is a member of The Explorers Club, holds a U.S.
Lynne was born and raised in South Africa and after finishing her education spent several years teaching there. Her love for travel led her around the globe, and eventually turned into a career in the adventure travel industry as cruise director. Since 1995 she has traveled from Antarctica to the Arctic, through Africa and the Indian Ocean, Russia, the South Pacific, and Australia. Voyages have taken Lynne to every continent and across every ocean aboard expedition vessels ranging from Russian icebreakers to Australian catamarans.
A Chicago native, Mike earned both his B.S. in biology and an M.S. degree in ecology, ethology, and evolution at the University of Illinois. Since then he has spent 10 years conducting research around the Pacific Rim, where he lived in the highlands of New Guinea, logged hundreds of hours beneath its waters working for conservation organizations, and taught field biology courses for the University of PNG.
Mark developed his fascination with the natural world, especially birds and mammals, during his boyhood in the landlocked English county of Worcestershire. He pursued academic interests in biology during studies in England and Scotland, while exploring the coasts and mountains of Britain in search of birds. Mark earned his PhD from Stirling University, Scotland, for his work on avian behavioral-ecology in Iceland and Scotland.
As a historian, curator, maritime archaeologist, researcher, deep-sea diver, television host, museum director, lecturer, and author, Jim has built an incredible foundation of knowledge and experience. Best known publicly as host and archaeologist for the international TV documentary series, The Sea Hunters, he has led or participated in shipwreck expeditions around the world.
A professional naturalist and resident of Homer, Alaska, Carmen works as a marine science educator for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game at the Kachemak Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. Carmen and her husband, Conrad, own Northcountry Nature, a small natural history publisher, and have collaborated on books about the marine environment. Since 1989 Carmen has been a naturalist and lecturer aboard a variety of expedition vessels visiting primarily polar and sub-polar regions.
A resident of Homer, Alaska, Conrad is a professional naturalist and biologist as well as an accomplished artist in the media of pen-and-ink and scrimshaw. He and his wife, Carmen, own Northcountry Nature, a small natural history publisher, and together have written and published guides and children’s books on marine life. Since 1989 Conrad has been a naturalist-lecturer aboard a variety of expedition vessels, primarily in polar and sub-polar regions, including more than 70 voyages to the Antarctic.
Dan has spent the last 10 years in Seward, Alaska, as a kayak guide, mountain guide, naturalist, and captain of a 150-guest tour boat, looking for whales, seals, puffins, and glaciers. Dan studies acoustic killer whale dialects to identify pods (families) by their calls, and is currently working on a Masters degree thesis on killer whale foraging habitat. In addition, Dan has performed improv comedy, flamenco guitar, and fire juggling! Don't expect to see the fire juggling...
Originally from Glasgow, Scotland, Tom is a graduate of the universities of Glasgow and Leicester and has spent the last 35 years as a geology curator in the National Museum of Wales. He is a Chartered Geologist, a Fellow of the Geological Society, and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, as well as a member of a dozen other geological and polar societies. Tom has over three decades of experience of interpreting geology for a wide range of audiences, through talks, lectures, field trips, exhibitions, and publications.
Jim hails from the seaside town of Cobh, County Cork, Ireland. He is a highly respected ornithologist and ecologist with more than 40 years of birding experience in Ireland, Europe, USA, Africa, the Antarctic, and the Arctic. Before setting out as a full-time freelance wildlife author, tour guide, and broadcaster, Jim had a career in medical laboratory science and pathology IT administration.
Hector Williams was raised in Churchill, Manitoba, the “Polar Bear Capital of the World,” and worked for various northern agencies like the Hudson's Bay Company, the Northern Service of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and the Department of Northern Affairs before deciding to move to warmer climes and become a classical archaeologist. He has maintained an interest in the north, its history, and its archaeology and has published several articles on Arctic Canada.