Once known as Hartley18
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Thanked 72 Times in 72 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Show him my inboard diesel.
I find it amazing how these capains sailed ships up the Chesapeake or through the Straits of Magellan without aux power. Especially if they were the first ship sailing through these unknown waters. They would have no idea if they were going to hit shallow water or poor winds. They were on their own with no aux power and no help if they needed it.
Whilst I'm sure he'd be amazed at the small, compact engine size... the rest of your post is not quite true:
They had large rowing-boats (more than one) and plenty of crew to provide sufficient auxilliary power (10 man-power?) to get them out shallow water or poor winds - and the seamanship with wind/tide to know how best to do it - but going there in the first place with either no charts or poor charts, is IMO far more gutsy.
It was quite common for the first explorers (Cook et al) to re-draw someone else's charts as they sailed along. Scary stuff!
"Honestly, I don't know why seamen persist in getting wrecked in some of the outlandish places they do, when they can do it in a nice place like Fiji." -- John Caldwell, "Desperate Voyage"