HMB Endeavour returns to Sydney

HMB Endeavour - in Perth 2011
The replica of Captain Cook's famous vessel HMB Endeavour returned to Sydney this week following a 400 day circumnavigation of Australia.

Since departing Sydney on 15 April 2011, HMB Endeavour called in to 18 ports and welcomed over 70,000 visitors, including more than 17,000 school children.

Along the way she was sailed partly by the permanent crew, and partly by young Australians out to increase their sailing skills and find adventure on the high seas. One of them was Phillip Gao.

Phillip Gao
.. .
Phillip was Youth Crew Navigator for V20/11 (and unofficial voyage photographer) and here he reflects on his experience in Young Endeavour:

It seems like only yesterday when twenty seven apprehensive yet eager youth set sail from Williamstown to Hobart on V20/11.

Twenty six names to learn, not to mention staff crew! New routines, sails to furl and unfurl, and the final test - Command Day... it was going to be a challenging ten days!

I was ecstatic to be elected Youth Navigator on Command Day and remember one stormy night on my watch when we noticed a huge container ship headed directly our way. The red dots indicating the position of our vessels seemed only centimetres apart on the radar screen. We attempted to manoeuvre but as the wind was low, we weren’t making much progress. I perceptively noticed my heart beat faster, ‘We’re heading on a crash course!’ The Captain was summoned and we made contact with the other vessel, politely informing them that sailing ships have right of way. Crisis averted!

Touring the east cost of Tasmania from a tall ship and visiting scenic (Wineglass Bay) and historic (Port Arthur) sites along the way was immensely enjoyable. Reflecting on the memories that we shared, the obstacles that we navigated – both mental and physical - and the friendships that were formed, I feel an immense sense of belonging and joy.

I definitely feel mentally much tougher and able to take challenges head on through the great leadership and teamwork skills developed on the journey. If you’re looking to broaden your horizons and test your limits, get on board!'


About the HMB Endeavour:

HMB Endeavour, is a full scale, Australian-built replica and one of the world's most accurate maritime reproductions. The Australian National Maritime Museum maintains HMB Endeavour for the public to experience 18th-century square-rig voyaging and seamanship. On board the beautifully crafted ship, you glimpse a sailor's life during one of history's great maritime adventures, Cook's epic 1768-71 world voyage.

Visit the http://www.anmm.gov.au/!Australian_National_Museum for more information.