Captain's Log
22 June 2000


The breeze yesterday evening did not last very long as hoped and most of the night was spent motorsailing. Engines were shut down at 0600 this morning and all sail reset. It looked like it was going to be a great day. Following ‘happy hour’ a quite unusual event occurred for this region when we found ourselves in quite thick sea fog. A cool breeze came in over the warmer water and bingo we couldn’t see. I took some perverse delight in sounding the fog signal each time Andrew, the XO, opened his mouth when running rope races. The fog only lasted 30-40 mins and taking advantage of the 10-15kt breeze, we conducted a series of tacking drills prior to lunch.The day had turned into a real beauty and everybody was looking forward to getting ashore to the beach. We anchored off Sth Percy Is at 1300 and soon had everybody ashore. The beach and island were superb and most of the crew enjoyed a game of touch footy and going for a swim. By sunset everybody was back onboard to enjoy a deck BBQ. We have just finished ‘three way talks’ which were very well done and provided plenty of laughs.We will get underway tomorrow morning and resume our passage north. With the crew well rested I expect they will be rearing to go.It’s been a great day at the office today with the only downer being away for my daughter’s 7th birthday. I did manage to speak to her via radio-telephone at least. Forecast tomorrow is for a bit more breeze so we should have a good sail. YC entry by Tirion Rodwell (age 17 from Alstonville, NSW). The last 24 hrs have been literally unbelievable. My recollection of them is still in awe. From swimming in crystal clear waters with no land in sight, to gasketing the topsail yard almost 30m in the air, with only Great Keppel on the horizon, I still occasionally have to remind myself this is real. We spent the night under motor and during the middle watch (12-4) I learnt navigation briefly and helped to furl 8 sails. Today I’m watch leader, which is a new challenge for me, who suffers from fear of voice projection. Happy hour was …well…happy hour. This morning was spent tacking which was great, not only as a workout, but now the sails and their parts are much clearer to me. Now it makes sense. After lunch we anchored half a mile from Sth Percy Island and we went ashore for a swim, touch footy and four hours of heaven: a deserted island, crystal blue water and fun. This evening was a BBQ on deck and three way talks, a highly effective exercise in getting to know the youth crew. I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time. It’s been only three days and already I don’t want to leave these people. I feel great.Chat tomorrow.Andrew (and Tirion)


21° 44' South / 150° 19'


At anchor South Percy Island, Wind SE 10kts, Temp 22, another balmy tropical evening