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    Re: Emergency navigation
    From: Greg R_
    Date: 2007 Sep 21, 10:03 -0700
    Thanks for that post - you are truly an encyclopedic font of navigational knowledge and trivia.  :-)
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "George Huxtable" <george---.u-net.com>
    Sent: Friday, September 21, 2007 6:07 AM
    Subject: [NavList 3243] Re: Emergency navigation

    > Henry Halboth asked-
    > "The subject of emergency navigation has several times come up in recent
    > posts. I have long wondered if, by chance, anyone has any knowledge of the
    > navigation performed by William Bligh after having been set adrift by the
    > HMS Bounty mutineers. This was, after all one of the more famous historical
    > small boat voyages. Is there any record of a journal having been kept
    > detailing the navigation performed?"
    > Yes, a transcript of Bligh's log from that remarkable voyage to Timor in
    > Bounty's launch has been printed in "Bligh and the Bounty", ed. Laurence
    > Irving, 1936, and perhaps elsewhere, more recently.
    > The mutiny occurred in 1789, in the Tonga group of islands, over 2000 miles
    > East of the Australian continent. Bligh decided to aim for the Dutch colony
    > of Timor, the nearest European settlement downwind. The alternative of
    > heading for the new convict settlement of Sydney might have been available,
    > but Bligh had left England in 1787, and the first fleet didn't arrive in
    > Sydney until 1788, so he wouldn't have known about it.
    > Bligh had not been through that passage North of Queensland (or "New
    > Holland") before, which he called Endeavour Straits (named  after Cook's
    > first voyage) ,and which we know as Torres Strait. He had no chart; just in
    > his mind the intended passage that way, in Bounty, now frustrated. He had a
    > quadrant (= Hadley octant) and a compass, but without a chart they would be
    > of limited use. His journal records precise latitudes, but his longitudes
    > were by dead reckoning.
    > Just after the mutiny, Bligh stopped at the Island of Tofua, where one of
    > the crew was killed by natives;. That was the only death, from 19 on board,
    > in the 41-day voyage, of 3,618 miles as measured with their improvised
    > log-line. After that, he avoided landing in other Pacific Island groups that
    > were passed. It was latitude sailing, really. Bligh aimed for a latitude in
    > which he knew he would reach Queensland, if he could pass the Barrier Reef.
    > Then, after island-hopping around the North tip of Queensland, living mainly
    > on shellfish, he knew he would be in the right latitude to reach Timor. It
    > was a great feat of chart-memory.
    > What is so remarkable is that Bligh produced chart information that became
    > useful to mariners and geographers, collected from his observations,
    > carefully recorded over that hazardous voyage.
    > George.
    > contact George Huxtable at
    > or at +44 1865 820222 (from UK, 01865 820222)
    > or at 1 Sandy Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.

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