by Trish Bowman
SAILING the open seas on an East Coast 31 to raise money and awareness of Parkinson's is a pursuit that might intimidate some, but for Poppy Moore, it's a way to make her father's dreams come true.
Poppy arrived in Rosslyn Bay Harbour last weekend as part of a year long journey that she hopes will make a difference to those affected by Parkinson's disease.
In 2006 the news that her father had been diagnosed with Parkinson's was life altering.
Poppy said others in the family had experienced the same fate so the family knew what to expect.
"My parents travelled to Australia from the UK three times, it was my father's dream to see much more of the country he had come to love. This trip is as much about allowing him to fulfil his dream through my eyes as it is about raising money and awareness of a disease that has had such a devastating effect on so many lives," Poppy said.
"Thanks to Skype and the internet, my parents can follow the journey in real time. I want them to feel they are part of this trip as I sail as much of Australia's coast and coastal regions as possible learning about the indigenous and local cultures as I travel.
"I am able to sail alone quite efficiently but so far I have met up with people who have come along for different legs of the journey."
When not on the water Poppy is pursuing her other great love, cycling.
"Everywhere I stop I take the opportunity to jump on my bike and explore the local area. I found the best little café in Yeppoon yesterday and got to take in all the points of interest along the way.
"I left home on Good Friday and have made so many stops already. I have met some amazing people and been a guest speaker to talk about my journey and Parkinson's at a number of destinations."
"I underwent extensive training to make this journey, I purchased 'Scaramouch' in June 2015 and spent time fitting her out with all the necessities before leaving my home town of Balmain," she said.
Poppy is inviting other fellow sailors to join her for some of the journey and will be stopping at sailing clubs along the way as well as taking part in local sailing regattas.
She will set off again on Wednesday.