Phil Bowman sets sail from Laurieton for six month yacht adventure

Phil keen to delve into sea-worthy sights on journey

Lorne resident Phil Bowman is about to embark on a six month adventure on the wide open sea.

"I'm not scared, I'm really looking forward to it," Phil said.

Phil purchased his 1969 Mark 1 Top Hat yacht back in 2005 when he retired. As a former diving instructor, Phil said he has spent a lot of time around the water.

"I can remember being very small and helping my father work on the boats," he said.

Over the last 12 months Phil has put in a lot of time on his yacht to ensure it is up to the six month journey.

Phil has remounted the vessel's engine, cleaned through the boat and installed a fridge to host fresh food for the journey.

Ready to go: Phil will set sail on Friday, May 24 from the wharf at Laurieton United Services Club. Pictured is his 1969 Mark 1 Tope Hat yacht. Photo: Phil Bowman.

Ready to go: Phil will set sail on Friday, May 24 from the wharf at Laurieton United Services Club. Pictured is his 1969 Mark 1 Tope Hat yacht. Photo: Phil Bowman.

Phil said he's often asked by people who else is going on the journey because he refers to the boat and himself as 'we'.

"It's just me, myself and I," he said.

Phil said he doesn't think he'll get lonely as he's taking plenty of books on board.

"I'll swap with others I meet along the way," he said.

Phil plans to travel up to Lizard Island, off the coast of Queensland and back again.

He's looking forward to soaking up the simple pleasures of life.

"On the water you get to see birds which thrived before introduced species like cats and dogs were introduced," Phil said.

"The dawn chorus is absolutely amazing."

While Phil expects to encounter some poor weather along the way, he plans to take shelter in various harbours to protect himself and the boat.

"The longest I've spent (to shield from weather) is 15 days," he said.

Phil will set sail on Friday, May 24 from the wharf at Laurieton United Services Club.

The wharf is becoming a popular hub with other sailing enthusiasts.

"One day I'd like to see it extended all the way to the Marine Rescue Camden Haven unit," Phil said.

"That will really make the town hum with visitors.

"A couple of weekends ago there were 15 boats here."

Six months is the longest time Phil has been on a sailing trip and he said he'll miss his wife Nan.

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