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Blue Water Blogs: Picton Castle

Posted by Tall Ships America on November 6, 2014

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Picton Castle is sailing west across the Indian Ocean…follow her voyage on Blue Water Blogs!

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October 31, 2014 – 12°00.7’S x 106°50.9’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)

“Today’s workshop is practical sailmaking – after a lecture on sail design and construction theory we’re starting to make canvas ditty bags which engage all the skills needed to make a sail, with instruction from Captain and help from our sail makers Tammy, John and Amy, and also Elsa who has joined us from GOTHENBURG and has great hand work skills. Secret midnight baking is planned for tomorrow’s Halloween festivities….”

Laura (Denmark) has the helm. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Laura (Denmark) has the helm. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 1, 2014 – 12°31.3’S x 104°40.6’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)

“Just a half day’s work today as it’s Saturday and we’re celebrating Halloween this afternoon.  The watches have been busy making scary cupcakes, carving pumpkins and working on some pretty hilarious costumes.”

Morten (Denmark) carves a jack-o-lantern for Halloween. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Morten (Denmark) carves a jack-o-lantern for Halloween. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 2, 2014 – 13°12.5’S x 102°20.3’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“The watches have been doing ‘make and mend’ on watch as it’s a Sunday – lots of people are working on seaming up their sail cloth ditty bags ready for the second installment of the Captain’s workshop tomorrow. Others have been doing their laundry in buckets of salt water on the well deck – to conserve fresh water we use salt for all but the final rinse, the supply is unlimited and it works very well.  Others are reading or playing cards in the salon, cleaning and organising their sea chests and bunks, or just hanging out in small groups on the ‘aloha deck’ aft and fo’c’sle head forward.”

Ship's Boy Dawson (Canada) helps Captain and Tammy present the ditty bag workshop. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Ship’s Boy Dawson (Canada) helps Captain and Tammy present the ditty bag workshop. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 3, 2014 – 13°58.6’S x 099°425.6’’E(sic) (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“We put the ship’s clocks back one hour overnight, so we’re now in the same time-zone as Bangkok, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City.  A week into this ocean passage, and the weather is perfect, so we’ve split some daymen off from the watches to give people a chance to learn some different skills and see different parts of the ship’s operation.  This week Aaron and Peter are working on rigging projects, Scott is in the engine room with Billy, and Elsa is making sails with Tammy and John. AB Erin is our new Bosun and keeping all the projects on deck and in the rig moving along.  Meanwhile Mark B is acting lead seaman for the 4-8 watch.  Part II of the Captain’s ditty bag workshops is scheduled for this afternoon. Making and sewing in grommets are the order of the day.”

Kelley (Canada) clews up the fore royal. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Kelley (Canada) clews up the fore royal. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 4, 2014 – 14°36.1’S x 097°42.6’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“Today’s workshop is sail handling drill – making sure the gang are quick and capable at taking in the lighter sails in case of winds building or squalls. Taking in the royals needs to be slick! It’s Erin’s birthday today and Alex has made a cake to celebrate, plus it’s everyone’s favourite, Donald Fried Chicken for supper!”

Aaron (USA) and Peter (USA) overhauling blocks. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Aaron (USA) and Peter (USA) overhauling blocks. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 5, 2014 – 15°13.6’S x 095°07.9’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“We continue with our sailcloth ditty bags in today’s workshop: we’ll be making the rope grommet that stiffens the top of the bag and stitching it onto the bag – it’s the same skill as ‘roping’, the traditional method of strengthening the edge of a sail.”

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