Monday, 24 August 2009

Day 16 – 22nd August

Scroll down for days 14 and 15. Sorry for the delay in getting posts up recently. The email system up here is unsurprisingly slightly flaky at times!
Well to be honest, after the last two days of extra excitement, today returned very much to the ‘normal’, routine. After little success yesterday at getting the new moorings back into the water, they were today’s main focus of activity. We had to spend a little time waiting for the ice floes to move out the way (the wind has changed direction so the ice has begun to flow south again), but in the end we successfully managed to deploy the lot. The foredeck is now mostly clear of buoys, floats, instruments and Kevlar rope making moving around the CTD winches and rosette a lot simpler! Retrieving and deploying every mooring successfully is certainly not a usual occurrence and therefore Humfrey is a very happy chief scientist!
So far throughout the cruise I have not suffered at all from sea sickness. Now I would like to say that this is because is have some iron sea legs but that would simply be lying. The real reason is so far the strait has simply been as flat as a mill pond. We have not experienced any of the strong winds that the strait is renowned for (most likely because it is summer) and the ice does a great job of mopping up swells if they do begin to form. At some points it’s been so flat you would not have been able to tell we were on boat.
However this all changed today after the wind decided that is was going to blow for a while. Although it certainly wasn’t enough to cause people any trouble the boat certainly started to rock a little! Its effect on the temperature though was horrendous. All the scientific work is completed on the foredeck so even if there is no wind there can easily be a 7-8 knot wind created simply from the boat moving. Add to this a 20 knot wind and an ambient air temperature of -1oC you can imagine what the wind chill does to you! Fortunately the boat is nice and toasty inside, so even if your fingers feel like they are seconds from frost bite you only need pop inside and all is well. This huge difference in temperature though does cause its own problems however if you have to pop outside occasionally for a few minutes. It’s too much of a faff to get fully dressed up in the thick floater suits just to get undressed again a few minutes later so most people just end up diving outside in sometimes just a t shirt. You have to do what ever it was you had go outside for pretty quickly or else you feel like you are freezing like an ice cube rapidly!


  1. Hey man, it all sounds awesome! Any chance you can post some photos on here? Its so hot here in Croatia I want to see some ICE!

  2. Hello Pete, this is your cousin (aunt?) Mandy. I have been following your trip and all your comments and it has been a super experience to me.

    I hope you continue to encounter mild weather and that, most of all, you profit from this fantastic experience.

    As for me, I am in sunny Florida right now with super warm weather and lovely swimming both at the beach or at the pool. Wish your mother would join!