Alstonville boy to sail into Anzac Cove on Young Endeavour
ALSTONVILLE adventurer Jacob McCalman is going to Gallipoli, and he's doing it in one of the most memorable ways imaginable.
The ocean-loving 18-year-old will sail into Anzac Cove from Canakkale, Turkey, just a few hours before the centenary's dawn service, on the tall ship Young Endeavour.
Once the day's ceremonies are complete, Jacob and his fellow crew of 24 young sailors and nine support staff will set sail for Southampton in the UK via Istanbul.
The epic journey involves 50 days at sea - which is music to this young sailor's ears.
"I'm a keen fisherman, I love being in the water, I love surfing. The water is part of me," he said.
The crew will traverse the Adriatic Sea between Turkey and Greece, the greater Mediterranean, before crossing the straits of Gibraltar and entering the North Atlantic along the coasts of Portugal, Spain and France.
Jacob, who crewed the Young Endeavour for first time two years ago on a 12-day voyage between Newcastle and Brisbane, said raising sails and tying giant knots was more of physical challenge than expected.
"I'm a keen sportsman so it was pretty easy to get used to the physicality," he said.
"I can't wait to get on it again, it feels really exciting.
"It's five times longer than the last voyage, so I'll feel a lot more confident of what I'm doing by the end."
For the Southern Cross University first year primary education student, attending the dawn service at Gallipoli would be the experience of a lifetime.
"We get on the boat at 3am at Canakkale and will arrive just in time for the service," he said.
Before this, he had only ever attended Anzac marches in Lismore, which while always powerful would certainly be overshadowed by the momentous occasion on the beach at Gallipoli.
"I have a feeling it will be quite a bit more introspective," he said. "It's the experience of a lifetime."