Transatlantic Crossing with Don Street
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A Film by Gavin Shaw
Running time: 1 Hour 57 minutes
Classic trade wind 5,000 mile Transatlantic crossing shot in 1986 aboard legendary sailor/author Don Street’s 1905 engineless 44 foot yawl, Iolaire. Documents Iolair’s ninth Atlantic crossing from Ireland with eleven ocean islands along the way to Christmas in the Caribbean.
First landfall is Vigo in dense fog. Next, a short-handed 800 mile passage to Madeira. Then enroute to the Canaries, the desolate and dangerous Salvage Islands. The trade winds fill in at 20 N and it’s an easy reach to the Verdes. From there, a fast 14-day run of 2100 miles with whales, water rationing, a leaky bilge bring Iolaire safely into Antigua just in time for Christmas.
“Sailing legend Don Street’s account of a transatlantic voyage aboard his 46-foot, 22-ton, engineless yawl, Iolaire, is in turns an adventure tale, a cruising guide, and an extended lesson in seamanship, all told in Don’s inimitable style. A surprise back-story is the transformation of London businessman Gavin Shaw from neophyte to passionate ocean sailor. It’s like going to sea with Don — the only things missing are the cold Heinekins and the salt spray in your face.”
— Herb McCormick, Cruising World Magazine Senior Editor
Produced in the 1980s, when small video cameras were rare, this jewel of a documentary was shot with a small format experimental JVC camera on VHS-C tape. This small package allowed the filmmaker to capture the intimate daily moments of a long ocean voyage, oceanscapes, and the many magnificent Atlantic islands along the passage.