What defines a true circumnavigation?

Not My Real Name

Not Actually Me
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I think it's round the capes.
Yes "The 5 Capes",  though many when saying they sailed around "Cape Leeuwin" and "South East Cape" Australia, they are using a special chart and pretending New Zealand is too small to matter.
For racing, sure.

I don't think it's unfair to state that a cruiser who has take the Panama canal and sailed all the way around the world back to where they started has circumnavigated.

 

sugarbird

Member
302
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Caribbean
Sounds like there's not a universally agreed upon definition, huh? What authoritative body's determination would we all agree to? We are now living in an age where some stone nitwit's biased and uninformed internet opinion get as much, sometimes more reach, traction and influence than widely respected, experienced, impartial scientists. I found the first couple of reads about the flat earthers amusing, now they're just annoying. 

 

jack_sparrow

Super Anarchist
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Yes "The 5 Capes",  though many when saying they sailed around "Cape Leeuwin" and "South East Cape" Australia, they are using a special chart and pretending New Zealand is too small to matter.
View attachment 340380

For racing, sure.

I don't think it's unfair to state that a cruiser who has take the Panama canal and sailed all the way around the world back to where they started has circumnavigated.
While "The 5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" may be the route for some prominent yacht races such as the Vendée Globe, it has nothing to do with racing. 

The route you refer incorporating the Suez and or Panama canals only came into being as a consequence of marine steam engines. Or in other words "only sail" equals "no canals".

The "5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" is the traditional Clipper Ship "circumnavigation route" derived from the 17th century Brouwer Route.

Anything else to describe circumnavigation under sail is simply a modern day imposter or invention.

images - 2020-01-17T215616.975.jpeg

 
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Not My Real Name

Not Actually Me
43,114
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View attachment 340380

While "The 5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" may be the route for some prominent yacht races such as the Vendée Globe, it has nothing to do with racing. 

The route you refer incorporating the Suez and or Panama canals only came into being as a consequence of marine steam engines. Or in other words "only sail" equals "no canals".

The "5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" is the traditional Clipper Ship "circumnavigation route" derived from the 17th century Brouwer Route.

Anything else to describe circumnavigation under sail is simply a modern day imposter or invention.

View attachment 341754
This I know. But it's 2020 and we have engines and canals now, and have had for some time.

I don't think someone that has made multiple laps around the world on their own boat via the Panama canal has NOT circumnavigated. If I kept sailing west and re-crossed my route in Trinidad I'd consider myself a circumnavigator. At that point there'd only be a handful of people I'd argue the point with.

Opinions are like assholes however, we all have them.

 

us7070

Super Anarchist
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Sounds like there's not a universally agreed upon definition, huh?
nor does there need to be.., there can be a definition for cruisers.., a definition for racers.., a definition for geographers.., and so on.

we could also ask whether "sailing around the world" and "circumnavigation" are the same - to me the notion of sailing around the world could be a bit more loosely defined than circumnavigation.

the antipodal points requirement for a circumnavigation makes sense, because the antipodal points and the lines on the surface that join them define a great circle, and any plane that includes the two antipodal points passes through the center of the earth (represented as a sphere). Any route that includes two antipodal points, and begins and ends at the same point, will at a minimum, be as long as the circumference of the sphere. To "circumnavigate" it is reasonable, that one should sail a distance at least as long as the circumference.., and should sail around the center - or at least through points that lie on a plane through the center.

 
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Miffy

Super Anarchist
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Imagine how insufferable and pedantic one has to be to police whether a professional mariner has circumnavigated. Also how insufferable a person has to be to go around “I’ve circumnavigated!” and get into arguments. 

 

Blue Crab

benthivore
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Thru the canals is doubtless a circumnavigation. I know a dozen folks who've been around. It's a big deal but I grew up reading the super sailors who rounded the capes under sail armed with a sextant. That's what I'll always  think of when talking of "sailing round the world." 

 

us7070

Super Anarchist
10,264
284
Imagine how insufferable and pedantic one has to be to police whether a professional mariner has circumnavigated. Also how insufferable a person has to be to go around “I’ve circumnavigated!” and get into arguments. 
well, the thread title asks for a definition of a "true" circumnavigation - indicating he is looking for something more than just a casual definition - and it turns out, there is a fairly precise definition.

i don't think that anyone here wants to get in an argument with someone who says they circumnavigated

 

Ed Lada

Super Anarchist
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Thru the canals is doubtless a circumnavigation. I know a dozen folks who've been around. It's a big deal but I grew up reading the super sailors who rounded the capes under sail armed with a sextant. That's what I'll always  think of when talking of "sailing round the world." 
Come on, you're old enough to have been a cabin boy on a clipper ship aren't you?   :p

 
View attachment 340380

While "The 5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" may be the route for some prominent yacht races such as the Vendée Globe, it has nothing to do with racing. 

The route you refer incorporating the Suez and or Panama canals only came into being as a consequence of marine steam engines. Or in other words "only sail" equals "no canals".

The "5 Capes" or "5 Oceans" is the traditional Clipper Ship "circumnavigation route" derived from the 17th century Brouwer Route.

Anything else to describe circumnavigation under sail is simply a modern day imposter or invention.

View attachment 341754
Thanks for posting this.  I've never heard of any of this before.   The clipper ship thing is interesting, but it seems to leave a lot of places that were major trade centers off.   I guess you have wool in New Zealand, but I've always hear of places like India and China and even Indonesia as the main trading centers of Asia in that era, no offense to Aussie and Kiwis intended.  

Why were the Clipper ships furiously sailing far south to rocket around the bottom of the Earth in the Roaring 40s and then return to Western Europe for? 

Possibly a better question:  what are some good books on the Clipper ships?    I've always heard of them, but it's a hole in my knowledge of history I'd like to plug. 

What are the Five Oceans?    Atlantic, Pacific, Indian ... and... 

Thanks much, nice post with the two maps! 


 

Fah Kiew Tu

Curmudgeon, First Rank
10,391
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Tasmania, Australia
Thanks for posting this.  I've never heard of any of this before.   The clipper ship thing is interesting, but it seems to leave a lot of places that were major trade centers off.   I guess you have wool in New Zealand, but I've always hear of places like India and China and even Indonesia as the main trading centers of Asia in that era, no offense to Aussie and Kiwis intended.  

Why were the Clipper ships furiously sailing far south to rocket around the bottom of the Earth in the Roaring 40s and then return to Western Europe for? 

Possibly a better question:  what are some good books on the Clipper ships?    I've always heard of them, but it's a hole in my knowledge of history I'd like to plug. 

What are the Five Oceans?    Atlantic, Pacific, Indian ... and... 

Thanks much, nice post with the two maps! 
Allan Villiers and Eric Newby 'The last great grain race'. Can't remember Villiers' book title ATM and am away from my library. Could dig up some others too if I was home. 'Endless Sea' by a Norwegian I think.

I think there's the casual cruisers' definition of a circumnavigation which permits canal transits and the hard-core/racer definition which doesn't. As long as one is clear about that, I think it's OK to say you've done one by transiting the 2 canals. I have no plans to do either. Crossing the Antarctic Circle and the Equator will do me for this life.

FKT

 

jack_sparrow

Super Anarchist
37,393
5,094
I wear a golden earring, and can piss into a 50 knot wind. Do I qualify, or am I an imposter?
Gold earing right ear ..well that's means you squat to take a piss. If you can do that into a Storm or Violent Storm if gusting over 55 and not fill your shoes up..well you are a Legend mate :)

 
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