Susan St. John’s new book, To Sail Beyond the Sunset is a collection of over 400 color photographs and 100 voices from the field. St. John will bring a slide show of images, and tell the stories and history of Outward Bound on Hurricane Island.
“In 1963, Josh Miner told me that the Outward Bound Foundation was interested in starting a school on the East Coast, preferably a sea school, and asked whether I would be interested in taking it on. Thinking this would be a great summer job, I said, ‘Yes’, and Josh asked me to look for a site.
Jack Crocker, the Headmaster at the Groton School where I was teaching, lived on North Haven in the summer and was a relative of Pen Williamson and Barney Hallowell. Jack said, ‘Go look at Hurricane Island; based on what we think you want to do, that’s what you want.’ And so in the fall of 1963, Betty and I borrowed Les Crockett’s 36’ Challenger and sailed Down East from Portland to Hurricane Island.
It was blowing hard out of the east and, as we beat across the bay, it was obvious that we couldn’t land at the main pier on Hurricane. We tried to anchor in behind Two Bush, across from the quarry, but there were a lot of boulders and lots of kelp, and it was still blowing pretty hard. We had a dinghy and the second time we anchored I said to Betty, ‘You’d better stay with the boat and keep the engine running.’ I rowed into the cobble beach, pulled the dinghy up and made about an hour and a half tour of the island. Back then there wasn’t a road to the main pier so I bushwhacked across. I saw all those piers and foundations and then worked back over and saw the quarry pond and the cliffs. I said to myself, ‘This is it; it’s all I need to know” and went back to the boat.’
– Peter Willauer 1964