Homecoming
26 Images

Photos: Abby Sunderland’s journey

Homecoming
Abby Sunderland listens to her sailing advisor, Jeff Casher, right, after she and her brother Zac Sunderland, left, answered questions during a news conference. Abby had returned home the night before, after she was rescued in the Indian Ocean. She had attempted to become the youngest sailor to circumnavigate the globe nonstop. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby Sunderland
Abby Sunderland and her brother Zac Sunderland conclude a news conference the day after her return from the Indian Ocean. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby Sunderland
Abby Sunderland waves to cameras the day after her return from the Indian Ocean, where she was rescued after her boat was disabled. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Reunion
Abby Sunderland, left, is reunited with her brother, Zac Sunderland, on June 26 at Saint Denis de la Reunion, Reunion Island. The girl’s around-the-world journey ended when her boat became disabled in a storm. She was rescued by a French fishing boat 2,000 miles west of Australia. (Lionel Cironneau / Associated Press)
Rescue
French fishermen from the Ile de la Reunion approach Abby Sunderland in her 40-foot yacht Wild Eyes on June 12 near St. Paul Island in the Indian Ocean. Sunderland was rescued after her yacht lost its mast during a fierce storm. (Eric Hoarau / TAAF/AFP/Getty Images)
Thousand Oaks
Zac Sunderland, left; Jeff Casher, who provided technical support for Abby Sunderland’s team; and Pastor Joe Schimmel talk to reporters in May in front of the Sunderland family home in Thousand Oaks as the family waited for information about Abby’s efforts to circumnavigate the globe nonstop aboard her boat Wild Eyes. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Bon voyage
Abby Sunderland of Thousand Oaks leaves Marina del Rey aboard the 40-foot sailboat Wild Eyes on a treacherous solo trip around the world that is expected to take at least five months. (Christina House / For The Times)
So long
Abby Sunderland, 16, is hugged by a well-wisher before starting a solo circumnavigation of the world. (Christina House / For The Times)
Abby raises the sail
Abby Sunderland adjusts her sails as she prepares to sail her 40-foot boat Wild Eyes out of Marina del Rey for a sea trial to get the ship tuned and ready. Abby began her sail with riggers and communication experts on board who dialed in the equipment. The team then departed her ship as she set sail for a solo overnight trial, which was the first time she was alone on the boat. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby prepares to sail
Abby prepares her sailboat in the harbor at Marina del Rey before sea trials begin to get the ship tuned and ready as she plans to set sail on a nonstop, unassisted global circumnavigation voyage. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Smiley face
A smiley face is painted on the bowsprit of Wild Eyes. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Instruction time
Abby gets instructions from her father, Laurence Sunderland, as a team of experts adjusts her sailboat in Marina del Rey. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Testing the boat
Abby sails her boat out of Marina del Rey. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Climbing the mast
Abby goes up to adjust some rigging as she sails out of Marina del Rey for the sea trial. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
In San Diego
Abby Sunderland prepares to throw a line to her older brother Zac as they arrive at the customs dock in San Diego after an 18-hour trip from Ensenada, Mexico, where she took possession of the 40-foot racing yacht that she hopes will take her around the world. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Inside “Wild Eyes”
Abby Sunderland, inside the cabin of “Wild Eyes,” prepares to land in San Diego 18 hours after sailing north from Ensenada, Mexico, with her father. The first leg of their sail was expected to take eight to 10 hours but took longer because of unfavorable conditions. The pair’s final destination is Marina del Rey. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Steering “Wild Eyes”
Laurence Sunderland steers “Wild Eyes” with the tiller as a bundled-up Abby rests on the floor of the yacht’s cockpit during their trip north from Ensenada, Mexico. Sunderland, 46, a shipwright and lifelong sailor, and his wife ignore the criticism but understand the risks that Abby, 16, faces in attempting to sail nonstop and unassisted around the world. “I do grapple with it,” he said. “But she’s ready for it from the standpoint of sailing ability, and emotionally I believe she’s ready to tackle this head-on.” (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Taking a break
Abby Sunderland sits on the floor of the cockpit to rest as well as to avoid the wind as temperatures drop after sunset as she and her father sail “Wild Eyes” north from Mexico to San Diego. Friends, home-cooked meals and a comfortable bed will be among the many things Abby says she will miss once she begins her solo excursion around the world later this month. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Sunset
Abby Sunderland watches the sun set as she and her father sail “Wild Eyes” north from Ensenada, Mexico, to Marina del Rey, where she and her family will then prepare for her attempt to make history as the youngest person to circle the globe alone, nonstop and unassisted. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby and her father
Abby works with her father, Laurence Sunderland, as they sail “Wild Eyes” from Ensenada, Mexico, to Marina del Rey, where they will prepare the craft for her around-the-world trek. She will try to become the youngest person to circumnavigate the world by boat unassisted and without making landfall. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Organizing line
Abby Sunderland organizes line as she and her father sail “Wild Eyes” north from Ensenada, Mexico, to San Diego. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
At the control
Abby Sunderland and her father, Laurence Sunderland, sail “Wild Eyes” out of the harbor in Ensenada, Mexico, with San Diego as their first stop and Marina del Ray their final destination. Once Abby begins her solo journey later this month, she cannot make landfall or accept assistance, beyond advice. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby Sunderland
Abby Sunderland, 16, and her older brother Zac sail in Ensenada, Mexico, where she took delivery of a 40-foot racing yacht that will be outfitted for her unassisted, nonstop voyage around the world. At 13, Abby first dreamed of making the trip. That was before Zac sold their parents on the idea of him sailing around the world alone on a 36-foot yacht. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Aboard “Wild Eyes”
Abby Sunderland, the second oldest of Laurence and Marianne Sunderland’s seven children (with an eighth on the way), makes sure everything is in order on “Wild Eyes” before sailing the orange-hulled vessel to Marina del Rey. She will depart later this month on what is expected to be a five-month journey around the world. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Abby and her brother
Abby’s brother Zac, 17, became the youngest American sailor to circle the world alone when he completed his excursion in July. Abby plans to navigate more treacherous waters than Zac, who sailed at higher latitudes in mostly warm climates. Zac’s trip featured stops in exotic ports, merciless gales, a run-in with pirates and a near-collision with a gargantuan freighter near the Panama Canal. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
“Wild Eyes”
The 40-foot racing yacht “Wild Eyes” is lowered into the Ensenada harbor’s waters, where Abby Sunderland and her family took possession of it. The craft will be outfitted for her voyage in Marina del Rey and her provisions will include freeze-dried food and a water desalination device. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
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