The Last Time Around Cape Horn: The Historic 1949 Voyage of the Windjammer Pamir

Overview

Ordinary Seaman William F. Stark's memorable tale of adventure recounts the last leg of the Grain Race, and the barque Pamir's rounding of fearsome Cape Horn-the storm-tossed tip of South America and the veritable Mount Everest of sailing. Her crew of thirty-four sailors experienced the shipboard life of the seventeenth century-in 1949-on a four-masted vessel that carried hundreds of acres of sail. In 128 days the Pamir journeyed 16,000 miles from Australia to England on decks awash with huge swells, as Stark ...
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New York, NY 2003 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 240 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: General/trade. Clean, tight copy with no writing; ... one remainders mark on the top page ends. APPEARS NEVER TO HAVE BEEN READ! As new dust jacket with light shelf wear for its age. Read more Show Less

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The Last Time Around Cape Horn: The Historic 1949 Voyage of the Windjammer Pamir

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Overview

Ordinary Seaman William F. Stark's memorable tale of adventure recounts the last leg of the Grain Race, and the barque Pamir's rounding of fearsome Cape Horn-the storm-tossed tip of South America and the veritable Mount Everest of sailing. Her crew of thirty-four sailors experienced the shipboard life of the seventeenth century-in 1949-on a four-masted vessel that carried hundreds of acres of sail. In 128 days the Pamir journeyed 16,000 miles from Australia to England on decks awash with huge swells, as Stark scrambled up ice-coated rigging to manhandle sails on masts twenty stories high. William Stark's epitaph is a thrilling book that climaxes the storied era begun by Cape Horn merchant sailors more than three centuries ago.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The year 1949 marked the final journeys of commercial windjammers, huge, steel-hulled, four-masted sailboats carrying cargo halfway around the world. Stark was a sailor on the Pamir, a Finnish ship, the very last windjammer to sail commercially around Cape Horn, and lived to write this romantic tale of adventure and camaraderie tempered by grueling, dangerous work. The author, who committed suicide earlier this year at age 75 after suffering from depression, had been enthralled with ships and sailing since childhood. He first heard of the Pamir's voyage in a Zurich cafe during a year abroad as a college student in 1947. He quit school to fly to Australia to try to get a job on the ship. That trip, on a tiny, rickety charter plane, was an adventure in itself, as Stark and his seat mate, a charming Frenchwoman en route to Indonesia, were engaged in a brief but passionate affair as they braved hair-raising takeoffs and brushes with guerrilla war in Saigon. Eventually arriving at the Pamir's port, Stark spent months working on the docks, acquiring, at the last minute, a much-coveted berth on the Pamir as an Ordinary Seaman. The four-month voyage across the world's most stormy and dangerous seas, without engines or even a radio, challenged him not only with dangers like furling sails atop 200-foot-high masts in hurricane winds, but also with grinding work and sleep deprivation demanded by four-hour watches. This entertaining memoir seamlessly imparts sailing terms and ocean lore, and will enthrall all who have held romantic notions of life at sea. Maps, photos not seen by PW. (Nov.) Forecast: An article on Stark and his son appears in this month's Outside magazine, which should spark interest in the book. The work has already received praise from Ian Frazier and Revell Carr. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786712335
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 9/25/2003
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.78 (w) x 8.64 (h) x 0.99 (d)

Table of Contents

Pamir Schematic
Introduction : Cape Horn, young men, and the spirit of adventure
Prelude : a night at sea
Ch. I The rumor of a ship 1
Ch. II Yvette 12
Ch. III Bad news 30
Ch. IV Life of a wharf rat 50
Ch. V Pamir of Mariehamn : the last of the Cape Horn fleet 69
Ch. VI The Pamir sets sail 83
Ch. VII In search of the roaring forties 99
Ch. VIII Running the easting down 120
Ch. IX The Horn 142
Ch. X North to the line 154
Ch. XI Of doldrums and hurricanes 169
Ch. XII The long way home 181
Epilogue : a life inland, and a ship that stayed with the sea 195
In memoriam William Stark 207
App. I Shipmates 211
App. II Cape Horners society 219
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