Viking Ship Misses Great Lakes Port

Bad weather can impact ports of call anywhere in the world, including in the Great Lakes, as Viking Octantis experienced this week.

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The new Viking Octantis, currently sailing its inaugural season in the Great Lakes, has reached another milestone, one every ship experiences at some point – missing a port of call due to weather.

The ship was scheduled to call on Bayfield, Wisconsin on May 31, but was unable to safely dock due to high winds and waves.

Viking Octantis Misses Port of Call

The luxury, purpose-built Viking Octantis was designed to sail in the Great Lakes, but that doesn’t mean the ship can overcome every hazard the region may have.

Unusually strong bad weather earlier this week caused the ship to miss its scheduled stop at the small town of Bayfield, Wisconsin, in the Apostle Islands on the southern shore of Lake Superior.

According to local reports from KBJR6, the ship did approach the port, but did not stop as planned. Winds at the time were 20-40 miles per hour with 5-10 foot waves, which made docking conditions unsafe and guests would have had difficulty boarding the small craft necessary to tender into the town.

While guests are understandably disappointed whenever a port of call must be canceled, every ship’s captain considers the safety of the guests, crew, and vessel first and foremost when making necessary changes.

Itinerary alterations are not made lightly, but are always done with the best interests of keeping everyone safe.

Viking Octantis will next be visiting Bayfield on June 28, provided the weather is better.

The Great Lakes region and adjacent states have been plagued with severe weather in recent days, including a rare F3 tornado in central Michigan, unseasonably high temperatures, and strong lines of thunderstorms.

Great Lakes Itineraries Filled With Charm

Despite missing the call in Bayfield, the ship continued on its itinerary. Viking Octantis is spending the summer in the Great Lakes, visiting such picturesque communities as Alpena, Houghton, and Mackinaw Island, Michigan; Thunder Bay and Windsor, Ontario; and more.

Mackinac Island, Michigan (Photo Credit: Eric Walli/Flickr)
Mackinac Island, Michigan (Photo Credit: Eric Walli/Flickr)

Along the way, the 30,150-gross ton expedition vessel will have amazing scenic sailing, including passing through the famous Soo Locks that connect Lake Superior and Lake Huron, as well as transiting the Welland Canal between Lake Ontario and Lake Erie to safely bypass Niagara Falls.

As guests explore the region, they have opportunities to view stunning natural wonders, view spectacular wildlife, and discover the history of unique communities.

More cosmopolitan destinations are part of these summer sailings as well, such as Toronto, Milwaukee, Cleveland, and Duluth.

Great Lakes offerings from Viking Cruises range from 8-15 nights. In 2023, the cruise line is offering a spectacular 65-day “Longitudinal World Cruise” itinerary aboard Viking Octantis that will sail as close as pole-to-pole as possible, from Antarctica to the Great Lakes and Canada, visiting nine countries along the way and calling on dozens of iconic ports.

Viking Octantis Cruise Ship
Photo Courtesy: Viking Cruises

The first of Viking Cruises’ expedition ships, Viking Octantis was delivered to Viking Cruises in December 2021. She will be joined later this year by her identical sister ship, Viking Polaris, bringing even more unique expedition sailings to cruisers eager to explore little-visited destinations around the world.

Viking Octantis

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