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AROUND THE WORLD
Under full sail, without main course being set.
The voyage to Australia began from the Iron Wharf, Faversham. After visiting the Canary Islands and Madeira, Eye of the Wind crossed the Atlantic, taking 21 days before the first landfall, Barbados, was reached. She then threaded her way through 22 Caribbean Islands before the Southerly run to Venezuela. Leaving La Guaria, she sailed for the Panama Isthmus, traversed the Canal and entered the Pacific Ocean for the first time. Visiting Cocos Island and the Galapagos Archipelago, she headed on the 2,300 mile run to Easter Island. Stops were then made at Pitcairn, French Polynesia, Suveros Atoll, the Samoas, Fiji, New Hedrides and Loyalties before arriving in Sydney in August 1977. She had travelled 18,000 miles under sail and only 1,800 being under power.
It was then decided to continue the voyage by sailing back to England thus completing a circumnavigation of the world. She sailed through the Great Barrier Reef to New Guinea, calling at the Trobriand and Marshall Bennett Islands. From New Guinea the vessel visited the islands of Indonesia, Singapore and the remote parts of Malaysia and Sri Lanka. Entering the Red Sea, she passed through the Suez Canal and into the Mediterranean Ocean. Four months were spent in the Mediterranean where the vessel called at Turkey, Greece, Yugoslavia, Italy, Malta and Spain before passing Gibraltar and heading north once again for England.
Eye of the Wind underwent extensive overhaul at Plymouth before being employed as the flagship of "Operation Drake" during a two year round the world voyage for young people. The old Skandia engine was removed and replaced with a 230 HP. Gardner 8L3B. The electrical system was altered to cope with the greater use of power and an air compressor was installed in a new deckhouse that was built aft. This deck house contained a small marine laboratory and, during Operation Drake, would also house the radio room. Also included was a new access of the engine room and lower saloon, and space for the lighting batteries and an extra toilet. The old anchor winch was replaced by a more modern unit and a concession was made to modern technology was made when radar was installed. The next two years saw the vessel in many remote parts of the world. Participants in this voyage have written three or books which give fascinating detail of the shore activities as well as the sailing routine and shipboard life.
Once the vessel returned to England with the Operation Drake charter completed, various pieces of equipment were removed that had been on loan and the accommodation refurbished. This was done in Southampton before the next voyage to Sydney commenced.
This voyage followed the earlier route to the Pacific, again calling at small islands before arriving in New Zealand where the vessel was engaged in making the film "Savage Island". The vessel's rig was altered to suit the period of the film, with the addition of yards on the main mast, and, after completing the film, arrived in Sydney with the rig of a brig.