After eight and a half months on land at the Loon's Foot Marina in Superior, the Pilgrim is back on the water.
The 18th-century tall ship replica from Duluth's sister city of Petrozavodsk, Russia, was launched back into the water May 30, according to the boat's Facebook page. The ship's first destination is a short jaunt up to Grand Marais for the Wooden Boat Show hosted by the North House Folk School.
The 42-foot Pilgrim, built by brothers Sergey and Alexander Sinelnik, has been traveling the globe since it was launched in 2017. The boat has traveled more than 12,000 miles since then.
Capt. Sergey Sinelnik is currently preparing the boat for a journey of a different kind.
"They're going to trailer the boat from here to Seattle, or more specifically, Everett, Washington," said Chris Pascone, Duluth resident and translator for the sailors. "Their current goal is to sail up from Washington to Alaska and then on to Siberia by the end of the sailing season, which for them means mid-September."
But the ship will return to Superior for a little while before making the over-2,100-mile land journey to Everett.
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According to posts from Capt. Sinelnik, the Twin Ports has been welcoming to the Russian visitors. The boat first arrived in the area around Sept. 7 and tethered behind the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center for a few days, allowing visitors to check out the historic ship. One such visitor was Mayor Emily Larson, who proclaimed Sept. 9, 2020, as Lodya Day, referencing the ship's other name.
That's how Pascone met the ship's crew last fall. As a fellow Russian speaker, he became fast friends with the captain and crew and had them over for dinner.
"It's been great to have them over and get to know them better," Pascone said. "They need some help interpreting, so I've been working as that for them. It's been very cool."
Pascone worked with the crew this week to ensure they had the permissions necessary to take the boat up to Grand Marais. After everything was approved, the crew set sail around 4 a.m. Thursday. The plan is for the boat to stay up at the festival through the weekend at least and then sail back to Superior.
More information about the Wooden Boat Show is available at northhouse.org/events/wooden-boat-show#pilgrim.
This story was updated at 6:23 p.m. June 19 to correct the spelling of "Petrozavodsk." It was originally posted at 5:20 p.m. June 18. The News Tribune regrets the error.