Captain's Log
14 April 2014

Day 3 – Passage along Fraser Is Coast

G’day Shipmates,The ship remained at sea overnight making way northwards up the east coast of Fraser Island. The Youth Crew each kept their first night watch last night, which means they were awake for 4 hours during the night, keeping the ship safe. All of the watches completed this first night watch to a very high standard in very trying conditions. The Youth Crew battled through rain squalls, high winds and 1.5 metre swells on the beam, throughout the night. During the first watch it was necessary to furl the Jib as the apparent wind speed approached the maximum for that sail.The turn-out at breakfast was pretty poor as most crew decided to either sacrifice it for the extra time in bed or as they hadn’t yet found their sea legs, were not interested in food. As the weather had deteriorated during the morning watch and over half of the youth crew were sea sick, it was decided to cancel both morning brief and cleaning stations, or ‘happy hour’ as we call it. During the forenoon watch we brailed the Mainsail and set the Course. This gave us improved speed and balanced the Ship better because with the Mainsail set without the Jib it was necessary to carry 20 degrees of Lee helm to sail the Ship in a straight line.By midday the winds were gusting to 40 knots and the swell had built to 3.0 metres, as we approached the area of direct influence of TC Ita.We restricted access to the upper decks to those personnel on watch during the afternoon due to the roll caused by the beam swell and the decks being wet. During he first dog the wind veered to SSE and the swell began to come more from the south also. This reduced the rolling which made it more comfortable for dinner.The intention is to conduct a two-watch wear at 2000, by which time we will have passed the northern tip of Fraser Island and we will alter from our current northerly course to a NW one. That will take us a little further away from the influence of the cyclone and make steering a steady course easier for the youth crew trainee helmsmen.I have been very impressed with how many of the youth crew have pushed through their sea sickness feelings and have turned-to on watch during the day.I expect the weather conditions to ease overnight as we continue our passage up the QLD coast.Yours, ayeCAPT Mike     “ 


24° 18' South / 153° 31' East


Weather: overcast with passing showers, Wind: 170/35 knots, Waves: 1.5 m, Swell: 160/3.0 metres, Temp: 21 deg. C