Sailing fun for Navy Cadets
EVEN a sudden downpour could not deter the 18 Navy Cadets who took to the Whitsunday waters for sail training exercises last Saturday.
The cadets, from the local unit New Training Ship (NTS) Whitsunday, assembled their two Corsairs at Shingley Beach, before hitting the water for some wind-driven fun.
NTS Whitsunday commanding officer, Sub-Lieutenant James Lang, said the Corsairs were capable of taking five people at a time, “but we generally operate with three”.
Sub Lt Lang said consequently, there was ‘turn-taking’ involved, with some cadets in the safety boat, while others were in the Corsairs.
“Then after 20 minutes or so we do a boat transfer from safety boat to sailing boat, mid-water,” he explained.
“It means the cadets learn all the aspects of sailing positions in the Corsair, as well as how to drive the safety boat.”
Sub Lt Lang said after Saturday’s initial downpour, the weather cleared “and was picture perfect for the rest of the day”.
The cadets sailed alongside the outer wall of the Abell Point Marina in an ideal 15knot breeze.
Cadets from NTS Whitsunday enjoy on-water activities every second Saturday, which include sailing, kayaking, power boating and fishing.
“And every fifth week or so is a major camp – either locally or at Townsville or Mackay,” Sub Lt Lang said.
This weekend, the cadets are heading to Townsville for a special camp from October 17-19.
Sub Lt Lang said here, they would experience a .22 rifle shoot on the RAAF base firing range, as well as participation in inter-unit sailing and kayaking competitions.
The event will also feature a Halloween party.
“So they’ve got to get dressed up,” he said.
Another fairly immediate focus for the unit will be finding a more permanent and dedicated base.
NTS Whitsunday is currently run from a container at the Whitsunday PCYC, but following recent break-ins, Sub Lt Lang says they are looking for somewhere that’s “safe and secure” to take a two-year lease.
With an estimated bill of about $30,000, the unit is pre- paring to start some community fundraising initiatives to further that cause. Any contributions made are tax deductible. Anyone interested in helping NTS Whitsunday is asked to contact Sub Lt James Lang on 0402 479 483.
TEAMWORK: Many hands made light work when the Whitsunday Navy Cadets took to the waters off Shingley Beach last Saturday.
GETTING WET: Even a sudden downpour didn't deter the Whitsunday Navy Cadets, who launched their sailing dinghies from Shingley Beach on Saturday morning.