Emma sets sail on the high seas in a tall ship

Terranora resident Emma Rylko aboard the STS Young Endeavour.
Terranora resident Emma Rylko aboard the STS Young Endeavour. Contributed

EVER dreamed of escaping your office cubicle to set sail over the horizon? Well, this girl did.

Earlier this month Terranora resident Emma Rylko took time off her public servant role to sail aboard the STS Young Endeavour as part of the International Tall Ship Festival.

As a returning crew member in the Melbourne to Hobart leg, Ms Rylko helped navigate the ship over a journey through the notorious Bass Strait.

"Conditions were cold, wet and windy... the West Coast of Tasmania is renowned for being tough and it lived up to its reputation," she said.

This was her second time on the STS Young Endeavour. In 2012 she took part in a youth development voyage through the placid waters of the Whitsundays.

"This trip was the polar opposite - 40 knot winds and 4m swells highlighted that we were at mercy of the sea," she said.

I really love sailing. Nothing compares to sitting on the ship's yards at the break of dawn and looking out on an endless horizon.

At 23, she took the opportunity to set sail in her last year of eligibility, as the STS Young Endeavour only accepts 16 to 23-year-olds as part of its purpose to 'serve the youth of Australia'.

"There were another 26 youths on board plus the Royal Australian Navy crew to guide us. I really bonded with everybody and made friends for life, from all over Australia," she said.

Back on dry land, she has continued to plan a flourishing future in the world of sailing.

Next month she will compete in the prestigious International Fleet Review race from Sydney to Auckland aboard the Spirit of New Zealand.

"I really love sailing. Nothing compares to sitting on the ship's yards at the break of dawn and looking out on an endless horizon.

"You just can't get that combination of remoteness and raw elements in everyday life."

Her advice to people aged 16-23 is to enter into the Young Endeavour youth ballot online, even if they have never tried sailing.

"If you're successful it's a privilege and an experience you'll look back on positively for the rest of your life," Ms Rylko said.

Topics:  endeavour tall ships

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