Joining us onboard Challenger 4 this week, we have a group of young people from three Buckinghamshire-based organisations, Lindengate, Youth Concern and Wycombe Youth Action.
Their four night adventure has been fully-funded by The Clare Foundation.
Check out their voyager blog to see what they’ve been getting up to since they began their adventure on Sunday (16th).
When I woke up this morning, I was nervous about going on this voyage. I don’t travel often and didn’t know what to expect.
I must say that my first day was a tremendous surprise! The city of Portsmouth, from which we would depart had the annual run (Great South Run) so, we had to walk a short distance.
Although, we arrived late, the crew was very understanding and made us all feel welcome.😊 The crew introduced themselves first, then gave us safety talks. We then sailed off towards the Isle of Wight. We took it in turns to do different tasks. Some of us did the double hoist of the main sail and some of us got to steer the boat. By the time we arrived, it was starting to get dark.
Today, we were awoken to AC/DC music blasting at 07:00!
We had breakfast and got ready for the day ahead. We set sail at 08:00 and ventured out from the Isle of Wight. Partway into our journey, the waters started to get more treacherous as large waves rocked the boat. During the close haul, the boat leaned very far over and a few people were a bit seasick. 🤢 But I was thrilled by the excitement of it and was one of the people to hoist the main sail during these conditions.
It was quite slippery and Jordan fell into me and knocked us both over, but it was all good fun and we laughed about it. A big wave came over the front of the boat while we were doing it and we got drenched! I absolutely adored this experience (despite the fact that my shoes are currently still drying!)
After the waters calmed down a bit, we then practised the procedure for a man overboard. A fender was thrown over and Alia and I got to trying to get it out of the water while being harnessed to the boat. I really enjoyed that, although, I accidentally dipped my foot into the sea and my shoe had to dry out for a second time.
Shortly after this we then docked in Poole and we got to have a look around.
We got woken up by 80s music yet again, we almost immediately started preparing the boat for sail. Funnily enough, when the hard labour started some crew members suddenly came down with “sea sickness” and spent the majority of their time in their bunks, though, they did help us dock the boat up and secure the top deck once we reached Yarmouth.
During the sail towards Yarmouth from Poole, I worked in the snake pit and became a bit of a master at it. Most of the crew climbed up the Spinnaker pole while we were sailing along (not me, I was afraid). I had a bit of a laugh after docking up because some sea cadets came along and struggled to secure their boat, even though there were way more than a dozen of them (as an army cadet, I had to relay my findings to my comrades).
We started our day in Yarmouth and prepared the boat to leave. Due to anticipated stormy weather later in the day, we left later to avoid the worst of it. We used a new sail on the bow called the storm gib.
Once we had set sail, the wind started to pick up to reach speeds of over 40 knots per hour. Waves lashed over the boat periodically, no crew member was left unsplashed. Despite the stormy winds, our crew had grown accustomed to the rocking of the boat and some found it relaxing enough to nap in between jobs. I also got to steer the ship, which proved challenging to keep on course in the strong wind and waves!
Eventually, we arrived back in Portsmouth and had to attach ourselves to Challenger 1 to dock. The team worked together to achieve this. We then put the boat to bed and then the crew went out together to explore Portsmouth.