Take Down the Mast

At this point the mast is only being held by the block-and-tackle at the top of the frame and at the base by the loosened bolts.

Removing the mast step bolts Lifting the mast off the step

The person at the base of the mast can now remove the bolts by hand.

The mast is winched about 2 inches above the deck.

Walking the mast... Easing the tackle

Holding tightly to the mast, the crewmember will start walking the base of the mast aft down the side deck opposite the crew at the winch.

As the line on the winch is eased, the mast will slowly come down.

...down the side deck Lowering the mast

Pressure should be applied to keep the spreaders from contacting the frame.

If all of the preparation was done carefully, this should be very smooth.

Lowering the mast further Twisting to clear the spreaders

Continue to lower smoothly. The less time spent in this precarious position, the better, but you don't want to rush things.

As you near the deck, it will be necessary to twist the mast so the spreader tips clear the A-frame.

Lay the mast on deck Celebrate

Lay the mast down on the deck. You may want to place some towels or wood blocks under it for protection of the deck.

You're done! Celebrate with your favorite beverage.

Undo the Standing Rigging <-Previous  

South: The Endurance Expedition South: The Endurance Expedition

Shackleton's near-fatal journey to the Antarctic has received a lot of press in recent years. This is Shackleton's own account—quiet, understated, and riveting. It also describes the travails of the Aurora expedition, intended to lay the groundwork for Shackleton on the other side of the continent.

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