Whales, Waves, and Friendship Bracelets

July 31, 2023

Ava and Eliza and Lance – A Watch

Riley, Eliza, Ava (and Lance not pictured) on the bow looking out for whales

Ship's Log

Noon Position
42°52.4’N x 070°21.4’W

Ship Heading
050

Ship Speed 
5 kts

Log (nm)
310.2

Weather / Wind / Sail Plan
Skies clear, slight clouds / SSE Beaufort Force 2 / Full stack and main stays’l

Description of location
Scantum Bay, Gulf of Maine

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Last night, we were at anchor off Isle of Shoals. We did galley cleanup, and it was a lot of dishes because the delicious mac ‘n cheese had really stuck to the pans. We also processed a sediment grab full of sand and gravel and shells. We all took turns standing anchor watch. Ava and Zach got to sing Taylor Swift songs with Chief Mate Thane Richards. Eliza and Lance got the first watch so they got a long night of sleep.

This morning, we got underway towards Boston. Eliza got up early and went out on deck. The weather was so cool and enjoyable, she went out on the headrig and just spent time with the water and the waves for over two hours. It was very relaxing and peaceful. Everyone gathered in the main saloon making friendship bracelets. We’ve made a lot of friendship bracelets on this program! Thankfully the ship had some embroidery thread and lots of people brought extra. Lunch was delicious Caesar wraps.

In the afternoon, we had watch. We rotated the whole watch through lab and deck because our watch hasn’t had much processing due to the rough weather a couple nights ago. We were sailing under the full stack, including the raffee, tops’l and course. It’s the first time it’s happened all summer! We gybed the stack a couple times and it had to be really coordinated because the yards had to come across with the sails set. We even launched the small boat to get some photos. We had class and got our oceanography projects started. We had to strike all the sails because we had to start steering towards Gloucester and the wind was out of the southwest. Ava and Zach had to dump all of the galley slops because we were coming in to shore and had to start storing our trash. It was gross, but the stewards really appreciated it. Eliza got to steer the ship for the first time and did well once she stopped treating it like a tiller. Eliza and Ava started singing, ‘Haul Away Girls’ with Thane. Lance did some leatherwork and helped fix the strap on the windlass crank that broke in the big storm a couple nights ago. Cole hung out on the headrig in the evening and found it really serene but a bit cold.

As we got closer to shore we started seeing whale blows. Lance saw it first and reported it to the ship. We were so excited because we’ve really gotten skunked on whales this trip. There were six whales in one group and three or four in another group. They had the classic humpback whale bushy blow, and they kept diving and showing their tails. We stopped to do a quick sediment grab. Ava drove the wire and Eliza drove the J frame and surfaced. The whales were blowing and feeding on the horizon the whole time. Lance timed it and they had 4-5 minutes dives and 3-4 minutes of spouts and blows between dives. It was a great end to our last science station! But we were jealous because right after we went to dinner, B Watch saw the whales jump and breach.

We’re looking forward to a full night of rest and a shower!

Ava and Eliza and Lance – A Watch

SSV Corwith Cramer sailing under the full stack with all the squares set

Eliza on the headrig

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