Meet the youngest solo circumnavigator - Soundings Online

Meet the youngest solo circumnavigator

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The New England Science & Sailing training center in Stonington, Conn., is opening its doors to anyone interested in hearing 16-year-old Laura Dekker describe her solo circumnavigation.

She will speak from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Oct. 11 at the center’s 70 Water St. location.

The presentation will include photos from her voyage as well as some exclusive pre-release video — including of species she encountered around the world. Dekker had to cope with weeks of solitude, ocean storms and a fear of pirates while navigating and sailing Guppy, her 30-year-old and 38-foot Jeanneau Ginfizz ketch, all the time trying to keep up with her schoolwork.

Dekker covered more than 27,000 nautical miles on a trip with stops at ports including the Canary Islands, Panama, the Galapagos Islands, Tonga, Fiji, Bora Bora, Australia, South Africa and finally St. Maarten, from where she set out on Jan. 20, 2011, and returned in 2012.

Unlike other young sailors who recently crossed the globe, Dekker repeatedly anchored at ports along the way to sleep, study and repair Guppy. Dekker launched her trip two months after Abby Sunderland, a 16-year-old American sailor, was rescued in the middle of the Indian Ocean during a similar attempt.

A recommended contribution will be requested at the door. For information, call (860) 535-9362.