Here is Achiever’s story, as published in Tracking Raincoast into 2016.
It begins with a few short words in Tracking Raincoast into 2003: “We’re looking for a research vessel.”
By 2004, we had found and acquired Achiever – a passenger sailboat built in New Zealand by Kiwi designer Bo Birdsall. Achiever spent her formative years sailing the south Pacific and the Bering Sea before arriving in British Columbia. It was in a Vancouver marina where Raincoast’s Brian Falconer and Misty MacDuffee first laid eyes upon her. With her formidable twenty-meter steel hull, it was clear she had the robustness and potential to be the open-water scientific research vessel Raincoast sought. And there was karma; Achiever was owned by one of our European partners who helped us secure the ban on importing BC grizzly hunt trophies to the EU.
2016 marked ten years of service since Achiever’s extensive refit, which was completed thanks to the donations, labour, and assist ance of generous supporters who understood the potential of this vessel. Led by Brian Falconer, Raincoast’s Captain and then Marine Operations director at the time, her refit included a new steel cabin, power house, and a substantial redesign to make her better suited to the gruelling requirements of open water survey work and extended access to the remote and otherwise inaccessible regions of the Great Bear Rainforest.
Since Achiever’s re-launch in 2006, she has traveled more than a hundred thousand kilometers, logging many of these hours on transect surveys for marine mammals and birds. For a decade now, she and her dedicated crew have spent seven months out of each year working at sea, partnering with communities, universities, government agencies, and NGOs conducting scientific field work and ecological monitoring, creating film documentaries, hosting educational programs, and monitoring our guide outfitting territories. Her success is a testament to the vision, dedication, and hard work of the crew that transformed her and continue to operate her today.
Find out more about the Achiever!