Today we arrived at Rangiroa. The journey here was not so simple, however!
We diligently navigated our path to Rangiroa, spotting it from afar during our 11-3 Midwatch shift. We sailed the first half of the day and a little more, arriving at the pass at about 14:00. We were ready to navigate the tricky, narrow pass, and get into the water to orient ourselves with the reef. The tides had other plans. Patiently waiting for high tide to subside, we looped in circles until 16:30, when the tides shifted from going in to a lull, providing us precision steering and superior control of the vessel. It was at this point when we began our movement through the channel. Through teamwork and communication, we made our way into the lagoon, and dropped anchor at 17:00, just in time for a magnificent sunset, and an even more jaw-dropping full moon.
A dolphin spotted while waiting for the perfect moment outside Rangiroa
Throughout the day we reinforced our lab and sailing skills, and in the evening we all got together for an all-hands dinner, and continued our studying of differing fishes, invertebrates, and corals in preparation for our first official reef survey tomorrow. With full bellies and blissful excitement, we rest up for the long day ahead.
A-watch member Andrew Shaw, Eckerd College.