Cisnecito Around the World

Who: Julie and Chris Mays
Port: Newport, RI
02 February 2008 | Newport Beach, California
29 January 2008 | Newport Beach, CA
27 January 2008 | Balboa Yacht Club, California
25 January 2008 | San Diego, California
23 January 2008 | Mission Bay, California
20 January 2008 | Public Docks, San Diego
18 January 2008 | Shelter Island, San Diego
18 January 2008 | San Diego, California
17 January 2008 | United States/Mexico Border
17 January 2008 | Ensenada, Mexico
17 January 2008 | Ensenada Mexico
17 January 2008 | Ensenada, Mexico
16 January 2008 | Ensenada, Mexico
16 January 2008 | Ensenada, Mexico
14 January 2008 | Sacramento Reef, Baja California
14 January 2008 | Islas San Benitos
12 January 2008 | Islas San Benitos
12 January 2008 | Islas San Benitos
12 January 2008 | 60 Miles West of Turtle Bay
10 January 2008 | 130 Miles South of Cedros Island

Crossing Magellan's Wake

18 November 2007 | Mexico
Chris
I just finished reading "Over The Edge of the World" by Laurence Bergreen which is a gripping account of the first voyage around the world. It tells the unbelievable true story of Magellan, a Portuguese mariner, who in the early 1500s, renounces his loyalty to the King or Portugal in favor of the King of Spain and convinces the latter to finance a five ship armada to seek a west about route to the Spice Islands (Indonesia). Magellan is convinced that there is a southern strait which will allow his ships to pass through the Americas and reach the Spice Islands. He does find this strait which now bares his name and successfully navigates it. Although to do so, he brutally suppresses a mutiny which contributes to the circumstances of his death and taints his reputation forever.

Ultimately the voyage completes its primary goal of reaching the Spice Islands and is even profitable notwithstanding the human cost. Less than 10 percent of the 260 crew survive and three of five ships are lost. Only one ship makes it around the world which is an extraordinary accomplishment for the time. The voyage's contribution to the European understanding of the world is pivotal as it dispelled many myths and inaccuracies that had existed since the dawn of civilization including the size of the known world.

I plotted the Armada's approximate course around the world on our Nobeltec charting system (picture above). The book gives enough description to plot their presumed route pretty closely (over one hundred references to location). It is so much fun find the specific places events happened on a chart. For example, it is easy to imagine just how the first mutiny was defeated while looking at a chart of the very protected Puerto San Julian in modern day Argentina. It has a very narrow entrance and big tides so I can just see the currents that Magellan cunningly used to drift the mutinous ships of the Armada towards his flagship in the middle of the night. It is also fun to see where Julie and I crossed the Armada's wake four times during our trip around the world almost 500 years later.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it especially to sailors. There are lots of historical anecdotes the author includes which give great color and context to the story.

One of the anecdotes I would like to follow up on is the story of Cheng Ho and the Chinese Treasure Fleet. If anyone knows of any good books covering this story please post a comment. Thanks, Chris
Comments
Vessel Name: Cisnecito
Vessel Make/Model: Swan 46 MkII
Hailing Port: Newport, RI
Crew: Julie and Chris Mays
Extra: After three years of freezing in New York, we decided to give up our corporate careers to set sail on the opportunity of a lifetime...
Home Page: http://www.cisnecito.com/
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Who: Julie and Chris Mays
Port: Newport, RI