Winnipeg retiree is about to finish his trip around North America

Winnipeg retiree is about to finish his trip around North America

Robert Nuttall stuck on reef in Honduras.

Robert Nuttall is 66. He is from Winnipeg and he decided to fulfill his old dream – to have a trip around North America. The man sold everything he had and bought a sailboat.

However, his dreams did not come true. Unfortunately, the boat got stuck on the coral not far from Honduras. At that moment it was only one-third of the intended distance. Now the man will probably return home.

The incident occurred on February 7th. Nobody was hurt. Nuttall and other passengers were rescued by the Honduran fleet.

As the man explained later, the reef was not indicated on the maps and navigation systems he was using during the trip.

"Whether you're hitting the Canadian Shield or coral, it's the same with Fiberglas. It's fairly terminal for the boat," said Nuttall. "The waves were so brutal on the boat it actually ripped the keel right off the boat, it ripped the rudder right off the boat and the waves parked us high and dry on the reef."

The trip began in 2017. He moved along the west coast of North America and managed to cross the Caribbean Sea.

"It was a long plan that I've had all my life and I was able to put it into fruition," he said. "I just wanted something a little different to do — a legacy I could leave my children and talk to my grandchildren about."

Now Nuttall is working with local officials to reduce the damage to the coral reef. If he had not done this, he could have even gone to jail.

"On the reef there's all kinds of conches and lobster they take protecting that very seriously," he said. "If I were to try to run away from this, I might well go to jail."

Nuttall’s family plans to raise money with the help of GoFundMe to help the man. Initially, the boat cost about $100,000 and it was not insured. The man lost everything he had.

If Nuttall is able to buy a new boat, he plans to finish his trip.

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Robert Nuttall sailboat trip around North America