Entry One 

After an early start for the whole GPUTC Crew, we left our comfort zones at 0845 hours and had Portsmouth in our sights for the first jam packed day of sailing around the south coast of England. A slow but exciting 4 hours and 45 minutes passed as we neared our destination. After thanking our mini bus driver, collecting our gear, and walking to Gunwharf Quays, we were ready for our briefing from our Skipper: Bushy and 1st Mate: Jim, We also had Mike and Nick on-hand to answer any of our questions. Our first task was to un-tie the fenders from the starboard side and put them into the sail locker, in which we also took the sails out of to experience out first time sailing a challenger as a team. Departing at approx. 1600hours, we later had a go at tacking the boat with the sails then after we went back to the engines to take us to the Isle of Wight. After settling down at Cowes out two watch groups took off to the Galley and Top deck to complete the task they had been given beforehand. Starboard watch had the task of helping Bushy and Jim Park up the boat for the night. And the Port watch had the task of cooking a hearty meal for the rest of the crew on the Challenger 4. The Port watch did a fantastic job of providing us all with a Spaghetti Bolognese. The watches then swapped over so Starboard watch members; Stefan, Henry and Gerry did the washing up while the rest of Starboard watch helped Port watch square up the boat ready for another days work sailing on the Challenger 4.

GPUTC Port Watch (and Stefan)

Entry Two 

The day started with breakfast at 0800 hours. A range of cereals were available. Starboard watch prepared deck and sails for today’s adventures. Meanwhile, Port watch cleaned the galley and the heads. We set sail at 1000 hours. Destination: Yarmouth, Isle of Wight. During the journey we practiced tacking 14 times, getting quicker each time. Bushy (Skipper) and Jim (Mate) prepared a lunch of pasties and beans to eat between tack routines. Shortly after lunch, crew members took the helm and did a brilliant job at keeping course. Just before pulling into the Harbour we lost a fender, quickly retrieved by Jim and Bushy’s piloting skills. 5 ½ hours after initially setting off we arrived at Yarmouth Harbour with all fenders in tow. Mooring up right up next to a ferry terminal. We had a briefing and stowed the sheets and sails into the sails locker. The Starboard watch made bangers and mash, patiently waiting for the sausages to cook. Food was delicious. Well done Starboard watch (and mike for the gravy).

Henry, Nick and Stefan.

Entry Three 

We woke up at 0730 hours, and proceeded to eat breakfast, (who cooked it?) consisting of bacon baps, and prepped the ship for another day of sailing. Excitement ensued after everyone took turns climbing the mast. After setting sail at 1100 hours we headed back to Cowes, hoisting the mainsail for the first time, and practicing our tacking again. We also practiced Man Over Board (MOB) drills, in the unlikely event of an accident. We arrived at Cowes at 1600 Hours, and docked up in the pontoon. After a delicious chicken curry, made by port watch, we headed to the showers, and went to bed. ~F