Our journey started on a family sailboat in the Arctic where we saw the impact of climate change and human jetsam on the landscapes we love.
Graeme Esarey founded Ignik after attempting to transit the Northwest Passage, from Alaska to Greenland, with his family. In 2018 Graeme Esarey, an outdoor industry executive, quit his job to set sail on an old raceboat called Dogbark with his wife and their two daughters, ages nine and twelve.
The goal was to navigate from Seattle to Greenland via Alaska and the fabled Northwest Passage. With a rotating crew of Graeme’s parents (in their 70s) and writer/photographer friends (in their 30s), this multigenerational team performed research on sea surface temperatures for NOAA, visited remote Native Alaskan settlements carved from the permafrost, and were followed by whales, chased by muskoxen, and, at times, enveloped by sea ice as far as the eye could see.
Ultimately, with storm-driven ice blocking the Passage, the expedition turned back, but Graeme was changed forever by the wildness of the place—and by witnessing the direct impact climate change is having on the wildlife, landscape, and stalwart people of the Arctic.
Today Ignik makes high-quality, environmentally thoughtful heating products for the wilderness. We enable more folks to get outside earlier and remain outside longer.