Square Sails & Penguins – A South Atlantic Voyage


The capacity crowd at Manson’s Hall on Saturday, November 26, thoroughly enjoyed Hubert Havelaar’s power point presentation about his two month long, 5500 nautical miles adventure across the notorious South Atlantic Ocean.

Talked into the trip of a lifetime by a friend, in March 2016 Hubert boarded the tall ship Europa, a 105-year old square-rigged sailing ship in Punta Arenas in southern Chile.  The voyage took him around The Horn through narrow channels into open waters of the Southern Ocean, to South Orkney Islands and into the Weddell Sea tracing part of Shackelton’s famous Antarctic stranding adventure.  Then it was northeast to the tiny British island of Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic where the Europa’s visit was cut short by an impending storm that caused most aboard to experience seasickness.  (Hubert admitted to spending lots of time lying in his bunk!)  During the long voyage, Hubert assisted the ship’s carpenter with projects — only natural for a fine builder.

The crowd was intensely focused — you could have heard a pin drop in the hall! — as photos of narrow channels, islands, icebergs, seals, penguins, tiny island settlements, sunsets, square sails in the wind, high rolling waves, & white waters covering the decks graced the big screen.  Hubert interspersed his stunning photos with explanations and lots of stories.

Upon arrival in Capetown, South Africa, the Europa was somewhat early due to following winds and Hubert had to wait a couple of days for his wife Wendy who was flying in to join him for safari touring in South Africa before returning home.

Refreshments supplied by volunteers were enjoyed throughout the evening.

This highly popular presentation proved to be a good fundraiser for the Cortes Museum’s  outreach programming.  Regular talk presentations highlight interesting topics and local speakers.  Presentations are announced on the Museum website  and the Cortes Tideline.  On January 26, 2017, the Museum will present Brig Weiler with stories of earlier days on Cortes showcasing slides (yes, actual antique slides!) from her mother.  You won’t want to miss this one.