First, what is a Marlinespike (or Marlinspike)?
This is what I found on Wikipedia. You can also web search the term and lots of sites come up!
Well...it's actually a tool. The marlin spike. This is a pic of one:
"A typical marlinspike with a lanyard".
"Another style of marlinspike with an integral shackle key. This one is shown with a marlinspike hitch attached."
"Sailors who become quite proficient at knot tying, sewing, and use of the marlinspike can be known as marlin spikes, or marlin spike seamen. The body of knowledge that includes knotting and splicing is called marlinespike seamanship."
"The word marlinspike comes from the verb "to marl", which refers to the practice of "marling", or winding small diameter twine called marline onto larger ropes. The fish marlin is named after the marlinspike."
Wikipedia, May 25 2012
...on to the Training Ship the USS MARLINESPIKE...
From RTC website:
Marlinespike Basic Seamanship Phase
"I wish to have no connection with any ship that does not sail fast; for I intend to go in harm's way." -- John Paul Jones
One of the most physically challenging and motivating events in your training calendar is Basic Seamanship. You will start with the basics of line handling and shipboard watch standing. Don't relax, your training will move quickly. By the end of the third day you will be tested on getting the USS MARLINESPIKE (simulated training ship) underway and back to port safely as a team. Successful completion of this vigorous training will put you one step closer to the final hurdle "Battle Stations."
Are you Sea Worthy?
Also and older Boot Camp video with a brief portion (They have new ones and that is the one I post...but I like the old ones too...maybe I'll post both from now on).
Start at min 7:13 - 7:58
(Photos courtesy NavyDEP.com and Craig)