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Captain William Bligh did it - and so did they!

by Des Ryan on 16 Jun 2010
Bounty crew after arrival .. .
A four-man attempt to recreate Captain William Bligh's epic 3,700-mile open boat voyage succeeded today as the replica Bounty Boat arrived into Kupang from Tonga after a seven week voyage.

The Talisker Bounty Boat crew (from left) Dave Wilkinson, Dave Price, Don McIntyre and Chris Wilde, after they completed the first authentic re-enactment of the mutiny of the bounty, arriving in West Timor 221 years after Captain Bligh.

The journey wasn't the easiest. At the last minute, Chris Wilde, an 18-year-old rookie sailor from Britain, joined the crew when another team member pulled out. Then another of the crew, Dave Wilkinson from Hong Kong, found the going so tough he wanted to pull out during the journey and to be left on an island to make his own way home.

The four men began their epic journey off the coast of Tonga on April 29 at the same location where Bligh and his sailors - refugees from the mutiny on the HMS Bounty started some 221 years ago.

After almost seven weeks at sea the boat landed in Kupang, west Timor, yesterday afternoon (Tuesday).

Don McIntyre, adventurer, brains trust and skipper of the Bounty Boat said: 'Today we have made history and we are immensely proud of completing the Talisker Bounty Boat expedition.

'Whilst we were all incredibly excited to get close to Captain Bligh and his crew, everyone on board the Talisker Bounty Boat was still aware that the experience would push us to the limit of endurance and survival.

'That said, it is one thing anticipating what the journey will bring and quite another going through it for seven weeks. Even with my experience, this has undoubtedly been one of the hardest but best things I have ever done.'

The journey saw the crew face the same deprivations as those encountered by the original crew, which included no navigation charts, only two weeks of water and hardly any food.

The crew hoped to raise about £150,000 for The Sheffield Institute Foundation for Motor Neurone Disease.

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