It was also in 2012 that the design of the 40’ Aspen C120 began. Starting with drawings, and then eventually a full-size chipboard mockup.
In June 2014 my son Nick, friend Dave Boner and I embarked on the Pacific Challenge put on by Pacific Yachting magazine. On this trip we circumnavigated Vancouver Island non-stop traversing 557 miles, in 47 hours and 5 minutes, consuming only 267 gallons of diesel. To this day we hold the record.
At this stage, in 2014, the company had outgrown that 4,000 square foot shop alongside my house, so we moved production into Nordic Tug’s facilities in Burlington, Washington. It was also at this time that we began development and tooling on the next big step for Aspen, the 40’ Aspen C120. This 40’x14’ yacht hit the water in the spring of 2015. To our delight, we proved that the patented proa hull design scales beautifully, and in fact only gets better. As of the summer of 2022 there are 23 C120’s cruising the waters around the United States.
It was in the fall of 2015 that Aspen moved out of Nordic Tugs facilities after acquiring two new facilities of our own in Burlington, Washington with a total of 33,000 square feet at that time. This included both assembly and our own lamination building. By early 2016 the facilities were fully up and running.
Always having a thirst for adventure, from May 2017 to October 2018 we partnered with a new C120 owner to journey 10,502 miles from the Pacific Northwest to Annapolis, Maryland on an expedition we called the Aspen 10,000 Mile Tour. This voyage included cruising North to the glaciers of Alaska, before heading down the Pacific Coast, around the Baja Peninsula into the Sea of Cortez Mexico. The C120 was then portaged by truck to Texas where the journey continued across the Gulf of Mexico, through the Florida Keys, and up the eastern seaboard to arrive in Annapolis, Maryland for the 2018 Annapolis Boat Show. We averaged 19.5mph, getting an average fuel economy of 1.48mpg, and a top speed of 32mph surfing down the California coast (per the Garmin chartplotter).
In 2018 we won the Family Business Award for Innovation from Seattle Business Magazine. This was a really cool award… maybe the coolest. As an engineer in the innovation category, I don’t know if it gets any better than receiving an award for working with your family that you love. Today I work with my son Nick, Aspen’s Sales Director, my son Steve, the Financial Controller, and my son-in-law Brandon, the Service Manager.
Putting my engineering and design hat back on, we followed the market and Aspen’s first asymmetrical outboard powered hull launched in June 2018. This new design featured dissimilar powered outboards to match the asymmetrical hulls, with a 70hp on port and a 200hp on starboard. This new outboard design was applied to the C100, and the 34’ C107 was introduced the fall of 2018.
To prove the capabilities of this new outboard design I thought up a new, albeit crazy adventure. We decided to take the outboard prototype boat down the Mackenzie River in Canada to the Arctic Ocean in July 2019 in a promotion we called Aspen’s Arctic Adventure. This was an epic journey through the untamed Canadian wilderness, down an uncharted river 1,120 miles to the Arctic Ocean, and then back up the river to return to where we launched.
In the summer of 2020, we expanded operations even further, acquiring a 17,400 square foot building to be home for Aspen’s Service Department and a second lamination facility for the C120 line. By fall of 2021 we acquired another 5,000 square foot building for sub-assembly, across the street from our main assembly building.
Today, Aspen builds 7 models in a modern 48,000 square foot campus in the Pacific Northwest with a team of more than 44 skilled boat builders. The company has become quite successful, and I am very proud of our products, and our team including my family. I am also confident that if you have, or will be purchasing an Aspen Power Catamaran, you will be proud to own one of the most advanced and innovative boats available.