17° 38' South
146° 20' East
Calm seas with a 15 knot southerly breeze.
Well, what a busy start to the voyage! Our 24 Youth Crew joined us in Cairns on the afternoon of Saturday 14 July and, after a quick farewell to family and frineds, the ship got away from the wharf for a quick trip to anchor in Cairns Harbour overnight. Our young crew very quickly got into the swing of life on a tall ship and after some safety and shipboard briefs, they were climbing the mast on night one.

Sunday morning dawned as a fine day with a nice breeze (from the wrong direction though) and the morning was spent doing some PT, enjoying Chef Simon's excellent breakfast and practicing sail setting and furling - the business end of sailing a tall ship. After lunch we weighed anchor and sailed from Cairns Harbour for the 'real' start of the voyage. With the wind coming from exactly where we wanted to head, the crew spent the afternoon practicing tacking the ship (turning around). Fortunately they are an enthusiastic and cheerful crew who cottoned on fairly quickly to what they needed to do. Just as well because the passage south through the reef overnight saw us waking everyone up about four times to tack through the narrow waters.

Monday morning and the great weather and wind are holding out nicely. We had a few sea sickies overnight, but with another bout of Simon's food and some encouragement from friends and shipmates, most are well on the way to finding their sea legs now. We had a range of activities during the day including a visit from Nana Diesel, a number of tacks and the first round of rope races with Blue Watch taking the honours. This afternoon we were even treated to the sight of a Humpback Whale so close you could nearly touch it. A special sight indeed.

In a short space of time the crew are coming together really well under the guidance of the Watch Leaders (Lisa, Jordo and Sumo). We are looking forward to an anchorage somewhere in the Whitsundays over the next day or two and continuing the cruise south.

Yours aye,

Captain Matt.