Captain's Log
20 June 2000

The Whomper

Got everybody aloft last night which was a good effort and nearly everybody made it to the topgallant yard later during the night.This morning we woke to a pleasant day with all sign of rain gone. After breakfast and morning brief we introduced the YC to the joys of ‘happy hour’ and then it was time to get stuck into safety and sail training. At 1100 we commenced to weigh anchor which had to be halted as we suffered a hydraulic leak below decks. Rick the engineer and his apprentice Dion (normally the navigator) beavered away sorting out the problem of a blown seal. While waiting for the repairs, the YC continued on with their training. At 1315, with the defect repaired, anchor was weighed and the ship motored out of Gladstone Harbour as the YC went about setting and furling sails.Engines were shut down at 1500 and the ship sailed slowly northwards in the light easterly breeze. At 1630 we went to tacking stations for the first time and in short order we had conducted two tacks successfully. This important milestone enabled the YC to break into their watches and settle down for the night under sail. Overnight the training will continue and tomorrow I think we will break out the ‘whomper’ (large jib) and fisherman staysail, which are ideal for these light conditions.YC entry by Nina Crawford (age 20 from Brisbane) – Sailing a tall ship is something that most people only dream about. For the 24 YC onboard, this dream has become a reality. For ten magical, amazing and wondrous days we have the chance to explore our limits. The challenges that we will face will help us to discover more about ourselves, others and sailing. The last 24 hours has included everything from climbing the mast at night to every person learning what to do at their tacking station and how to set a number of sails. With all the positives, such as the achievement of climbing the mast, and the negatives, such as being seasick, we all learn and appreciate each new thing that we learn. This adventure is certainly one that will never be forgotten.Andrew (and Nina)


23° 39' South / 151° 30'


Wind E 5-10kts, Course 345, Speed 3kts, Temp 21, clear