As the winds abated over the night, this morning brought with it a calmer sea and a better passage speed. Sydney seems so close now, we can almost smell it. As the day wore on so the wind died and the seas calmed. The important activities for today were the hard faught rope races where red watch came back from a thrashing by blue and white watches yesterday, a communication exercise and the much anticipated Captains setting and furling drills. The setting and furling drills are the final obstacle to Command Day. This is the time where the Youth Crew show that they have learnt to sail the ship safely and that they are ready for Command Day. As it turns out, all watches passed with flying colours and are more than up to the challenge.
We are now under 100nm to run to Australia and hope to clear the heads in the early hours of tomorrow morning. Hooray!
Below are comments from some of the Youth Crew:
I have been onboard for about ten days now although it feels like a lot longer as we have been busy with sailing activities and achieved so much as individuals and a newly formed crew. Chilling out in the Bay Of Islands in NZ was great but I couldn't wait to get stuck into sailing the Tasman Sea. We had a few days to get up to speed before hitting a storm which really pushed our boundaries. I have to say that White Watch really came through and performed when it hit-wet, drained, cold with sore hands and bruises but we carried on for our entire watch setting and furling sails to meet the pressure of the weather. It was during that watch that we stepped up and met the challenges thrown at us. Now the storm has abated we can sit back, enjoy the sun, the sea and the great company and look forward to sailing into Sydney harbour on our tall ship "The Young Endeavour"
The start to the voyage was nice and relaxing ,cruising up the New Zealand coast and getting in a bit of sight seeing along the way while learning all our handling and sailing skills. After the first few days it was good to head out to sea and take on the Tasman. The first couple of days at sea were great with steady winds and calm sea's allowing everyone to settle in before we were hit by some bad weather. This provided a great opportunity for everyone as we raced to change the ship's configuration in the face, and middle of, the heavy weather. Our watch was on duty when it hit and climbing the masts to furl the extra sails while the ship rolled in the swell's below was a great expeirence and really pushed everybody to perform and we came through thouroughly happy with ourselves and glad for the challenge. Nw the wether has abated and I look forward to some more good sailing around Sydney.