The voyage began 17 months earlier on a cold December day when Creamer and crew left Cape May, New Jersey, bound for Cape Town, South Africa. His landfalls would include Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, and, after rounding Cape Horn, the Falkland Islands before he arrived home in New Jersey some 30,000 miles later.
Creamer was a geography professor at New Jersey's Glassboro State College who retired in 1977. He was intrigued by such voyagers as the Vikings and the Phoenicians, who used their eyes and know-how to observe wind and waves so they could cross oceans. By the early 1970s, he decided to delve deeper into this fascination, and he answered the cruising itch by buying a 30-foot ketch that he sailed from Cape May to the Azores and back. It was during long night watches that he found that he could steer quite well by watching Polaris rather than the compass. In three more Atlantic crossings by 1980, he honed his ability to determine latitude by relying on the Pole Star and longitude based on dead reckoning.