Today was quite a day. From our first day of official sailing through 4-6 foot swells with 5 force winds on the Beaufort scale to whales breaching very close to the ship, we have had our share of exciting experiences. The day started off with Port Watch breakfast at 0620, followed by Starboard Watch breakfast at around 0700. Port Watch had watch from 0750-1300, and while it started off smooth sailing, it soon became a little more exciting. When wind and rain began picking up around 0900, we set the staysails and the mainsail, as well as the jib, and J-T. Over the course of Port Watch, we lowered quite a few scientific instruments over the side of the Cramer. We dragged a phytoplankton net behind us, dropped a Secchi Disk and a carousel, and carefully deployed a Neuston Net to capture zooplankton for observation.
Towards the end of our watch, the waves increased in size, we gybed the boat. Thankfully, we were relieved by Starboard Watch, so that we could go eat lunch (Chicken Pot Pie, and Tofu for vegetarians, a fantastic meal for eating after standing in the rain for 6 hours), and then most of us took a nap, and slept safely knowing that Starboard Watch would keep us safe. While the boat was rocking the most we’d experienced so far and we had a few victims of the motion of the ocean (thank you to the crew for the sea sickness medication), we were excited to be out of sight of land for the first time!
Tomorrow, we start our first sea watch rotation, which entails sailing all day, every day, in 6 hours on, 12 hours off rotations with our watch groups. Although some of us will be waking up at early hours in the morning, we are eagerly anticipating our first “true” watch rotation. Both of us are excited to get underway tomorrow.
Side Note: We saw the most amazing whale today! It breached around 10-20 feet from our stern while anchored, and swam around the Cramer. We watched it for a while as it swam through the harbor and out. It is such a privilege to be here on the Corwith Cramer, and experience all these amazing things!
- Lucy Katzman -Tranah, Port / C Watch, Tamalpais High School & Eden Raich, Port / B Watch, The Berkeley Carroll School
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