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Old 20-10-2017, 17:08   #1
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400 Years Since the Mayflower

In 2020, just three scant years from now, it will have been 400 years since the Mayflower made her fateful voyage full of religious wackos from Southampton to Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts via Plymouth, maybe one odd hole in Cornwall, and Newfoundland.

They chose the absolute absurdly wrong time and route to make this journey -- around the time of the equinoctial gales, and against the prevailing winds, on the rhumb line from Land's End to America. It took them 2 months. That no extratropical rotating storm caught up with them and dashed them to splinters while they lingered for two months (!) in one of the world's harshest pieces of ocean, is some kind of miracle. About now, actually, and I sit hunkered down tonight in Cowes, Isle of Wight, braced for hurricane force gales.

My great great (times x) grandfather, John Clarke, was recruited to be the navigator of the Mayflower because he, alone among the contingent on the Mayflower, had actually been across the Atlantic, and more than once, to Jamestown (to where he returned later and settled, thus establishing our line). What the hell was he thinking?

Getting across the Atlantic is something that, by now, thousands of yachtsmen have done. But how about doing it in the wrong season, and against the prevailing winds, in the wrong latitudes, unlike the ARC milk run in the trade winds? I'm thinking about organizing a 400 year anniversary rally following the route of the Mayflower, and in the same season. Of course we will be cheating -- with our rigs, we can sail far closer to the wind than the blocky Mayflower could, and God willing can get across in much less than two months.

Does anyone think this could be an interesting adventure? Or is it as silly as the original voyage? This voyage, in 1620, has haunted me my whole life, since I was a small child. I have been imagining what it must have been like, literally my whole life. Now I think (I think, I think -- within sight, across the Solent, of the place where it all began) I might just want to experience it. Does anyone else think this might be fun? As opposed to sheer madness?
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Old 20-10-2017, 17:56   #2
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

As a born Bermudian, I am very much involved in the history and teaching of the events of the 1609, 3rd supply fleet, the Flagship, Sea Venture, of which was wrecked here, leading to the establishment of my home. We have much in common.
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Old 20-10-2017, 18:02   #3
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

my line has 8 families of mayflower wakjob anticatholic nutjobs, including the governor bradford, surgeon samuel fuller, and others.
your rally sounds like a good time.... i will be watching from somewhereville....
i hope your hurricane was pleasant not frightening
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Old 20-10-2017, 18:09   #4
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

I think it would be an adventure, a tough and possibly dangerous one if a cyclone swings your way. But the historical connection in your case makes the risk worthwhile. The true objective risk is low, given a solid boat, crew and good forcasting.
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Old 20-10-2017, 18:26   #5
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
my line has 8 families of mayflower wakjob anticatholic nutjobs, including the governor bradford, surgeon samuel fuller, and others.
your rally sounds like a good time.... i will be watching from somewhereville....
i hope your hurricane was pleasant not frightening
Well, you should sail with us.

The Pilgrim Fathers were, while reasonably described as "nutjobs", were not actually so much "anti-Catholic" -- it was rather the Church of England, nominally protestant, that they were rebelling against. How did they get the idea that across the ocean would be the place to let loose -- I have no idea. They were truly crazy. But they are my people, and I want to understand their experience.
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Old 20-10-2017, 18:42   #6
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

The big question for you, Dockhead:

Will your new boat be ready in three years?

Steve
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Old 20-10-2017, 18:47   #7
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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The big question for you, Dockhead:

Will your new boat be ready in three years?

Steve
Doubtful. But the present boat would be fine for that. 54' on deck vs. 90' for the Mayflower, but strong and eager enough.
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Old 20-10-2017, 19:06   #8
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

Well, I dunno-it seems like an exercise in masochism to me. Maybe you could route far enough to the north to get a decent proportion of easterlies, but I think that it would more than likely be a triumph over misery than much fun. I'd certainly not sail as late as they did. I'm sure you wouldn't either.

But, make sure you spend a bunch of time in Newfoundland if you do it. Love that place.

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Old 20-10-2017, 19:24   #9
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

why would you ever want to repeat the mistakes of the past, let alone celebrate it?

perhaps we could arrange for some native americans to host the welcoming party when you arrive....i'm sure the holocast museum would sponser them..........
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Old 21-10-2017, 00:56   #10
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

Funny, I just posted on another thread about not sailing in higher latitudes out of season, and I posted this FNMOC screenshot. I just realized that if a fella were contemplating mirroring the departure time of the Mayflower, this sort of thing crosses the N. Atlantic regularly too! Fun.

We're just getting ready to leave Dutch Harbor for Seattle. I will not be gentle on the throttles. This chart is for Tuesday.
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Old 21-10-2017, 03:52   #11
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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Originally Posted by TJ D View Post
Well, I dunno-it seems like an exercise in masochism to me. Maybe you could route far enough to the north to get a decent proportion of easterlies, but I think that it would more than likely be a triumph over misery than much fun. I'd certainly not sail as late as they did. I'm sure you wouldn't either.

But, make sure you spend a bunch of time in Newfoundland if you do it. Love that place.

TJ
Yes, that's exactly why I wonder whether it's crazy.
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Old 21-10-2017, 03:53   #12
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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why would you ever want to repeat the mistakes of the past, let alone celebrate it?

perhaps we could arrange for some native americans to host the welcoming party when you arrive....i'm sure the holocast museum would sponser them..........
. . . .
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Old 21-10-2017, 04:09   #13
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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Yes, that's exactly why I wonder whether it's crazy.
For sure it's crazy...
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Old 21-10-2017, 05:04   #14
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

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Yes, that's exactly why I wonder whether it's crazy.
What was the route again

If they left on the 6 Sep and it took them 2 months that would mean on todays date they would be 2/3rds of the way across.


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Old 21-10-2017, 05:22   #15
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Re: 400 Years Since the Mayflower

I've got to be the softest Sailor out here, you couldn't pay me to do that trip, sunshine and dolphins, that's what I look for, not the red purple things above.
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