South Passage Adventure Under Sail
On Friday 5 December 2014, 19 Chevalier College students and two teachers set sail on a three day voyage from Wollongong to Sydney on the South Passage, a 100 foot (30.5m) gaff rigged Schooner. The ship was specifically designed for 14-17 year olds to experience adventure under sail, and some 40,000 young voyagers have sailed since the South Passage was launched in 1993. The South Passage is sailed in the traditional way. Everything is done manually – there are no winches or mechanical aids. Sails are raised and lowered by hand and every activity requires a number of people working together as a team. Chev students have enjoyed annual end of year voyages on the vessel for about 10 years now and all have returned invigorated from these challenging but unforgettable experiences.
Day 1 – Ship’s Log, Blue Watch
Upon our arrival, we were guided below deck to our bunks and assigned our watch groups. From there, we began to learn how to manage and sail a ship. Our first watch was not until two o’clock, and that was when we began to really experience what it was like to be a part of the crew.
Day 2 – Ship’s Log, White Watch
At around 4:00, we could no longer see any signs of land, so we turned around to sail towards Sydney. By now we were sailing in open ocean. Later in the knotting competition, White Watch dominated the figure-8 knot, and tied for first with Red Watch for the bowline knot, thanks to Jasmine’s expertise.