Peterhead brothers' toy pirate ship sails to Scandanavia
It sailed about 390 miles to Denmark, where it was found by a family who sent it on its way.
Its next stop was Sweden, where it ended up in a tree and it then travelled on to Norway, where it was found by nature officials.
The boys’ father MacNeill Ferguson said: “Everyone that has picked it up has been really kind and sent us photos and looked after it. People are really getting into the spirit of it.
“The boys have enjoyed it and every time we get a message telling us where it has landed we get on the computer and work out where it went, so they are tracking its progress on the map and it gives them an understanding of how big the world is.”
The ship, named Adventure, needed some adaptations before it was ready to tackle the North Sea.
With the help of their father, the boys added a counterweight to help it stay upright and then filled it with polystyrene to help it stay afloat.
After it passed trials in a swimming pool, they took it to the coast and launched it into the waves.
It carries a message asking anyone who finds the boat to send them a picture and launch Adventure back into the sea.
Mr Ferguson, 44, is pleased it has travelled so far.
He said: “I was concerned that the currents along the coast would take it down the north-east coast of Scotland, so I was over the moon when it made a beeline for Scandinavia.
“It reached Denmark and then Sweden, where it was picked up by a lady who was sailing her own boat and found it in a tree. She was really kind and remade the sails for it.
“Then it was picked up by a Norwegian conservation vessel, they got in touch with some beautiful photos.”
The story has attracted interest in the Norwegian press and Adventure is now being taken aboard the Christian Radich, a Norwegian full-rigged ship, which will carry the Playmobil vessel down to Cape Verde and then launch it, giving it the chance to sail thousands of miles across the Atlantic.
The boys launched the pirate ship as part of their bucket list of 500 adventures which they are working their way through, with their exploits charted on the Facebook page “The days are just packed” at https://www.facebook.com/tdajp/
They have carried out 207 so far, with one highlight being sending Lego figures “into space” with a high-altitude weather balloon which took the characters 20 miles above the Moray Firth, while they have also been bouldering and made tea from snow.
Other items on the list include build an igloo, go troll hunting and build a waterslide.
Parents MacNeill and Vicki Ferguson came up with the idea to provide the boys with excitement and interesting alternatives to screen time.
The couple, from Turriff, Aberdeenshire, have also set up The Marvellous Adventure Club which provides outdoor learning experiences for adults and children.