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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: Jun 2016


June 16, 2016

Mt. Holyoke Profiles Two Students on Transatlantic Voyage

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
SEA Semester: students set sail to Ireland
By Sasha Nyary

This June, two Mount Holyoke College students joined 13 other undergraduates on a transatlantic voyage aboard the SEA Semester tall ship, SSV Corwith Cramer, a 134-foot brigantine. Molly Lapointe ’17 is a French major, and Kate Armstrong ’19 intends to major in environmental studies.

The ship departed Woods Hole, Massachusetts, on June 3 and will arrive in Cork, Ireland, on June 30. During the crossing, Lapointe and Armstrong are conducting oceanographic research, honing their sailing skills, and cultivating leadership and management skills, all for academic credit.

Read the full story.

Categories: News,Corwith Cramer,Transatlantic Crossing, • Topics: None • (0) CommentsPermalink

June 16, 2016

Dolphin Sightings and Banana Spillage

Kaylie Plumb, University of South Carolina

Transatlantic Crossing

Greetings Land Lubbers,

Today has been a wonderful day for sailing! The seas have been low, the current is in our favor, and the sun has come out to help dry our laundry on the bow. We had another spectacular dolphin sighting this morning followed by a whale sighting from B watch up on the main mast. Other exciting news on the ship is that we have reached the halfway point of our journey!

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Transatlantic Crossing, • Topics: c267  megafauna • (7) CommentsPermalink

June 15, 2016

Smelling the Big Island

Sara Martin, A Watch, Chief Mate

Pacific Reef Expedition

As we approach the Hawaiian Islands, spirits are high in anticipation of our first tall, volcanic islands since Tahiti disappeared astern four weeks ago. Elaborate calculations are being performed in secret, as various members of the ship’s company try to pin down exactly when we might be able to see the heights of Mauna Loa peaking above the northern horizon.  Others are excited about the prospect of experiencing the smell of the islands-Hawaii’s ongoing volcanic activity can be sensed on the breeze as the NE trade winds carry remnants of volcanic ash and gases out to sea.


June 15, 2016

Still Sailing Along

Allisa Dalpe, Sailing Intern, Connecticut College

Transatlantic Crossing

After the dawn watch (0100-0700) and evening watch (1900-0100) combo of yesterday, I think B watch enjoyed our day to sleep in today. We awoke to cold, foggy weather, although the rain has let up from last night’s downpours. Starting the day off with an entertaining B watch meeting with mate Scott and assistant scientist Erin helped lighten the mood. We have only known each other for about 11 days now, but when living together in tight spaces and twenty-four hours a day, personalities come out and it feels like we have known each other for much, much longer.


June 14, 2016

Jellyfishing and Science-ing Hard

Kiara Reed, Colby College

Transatlantic Crossing

Today marks the start of data analysis for each Practical Oceanographic Research group. Nets have been sent out daily to collect phytoplankton on the surface of the ocean. These samples have accumulated over the days and our assistant scientists have turned the task of assigning meaning to this conglomerate of tiny plants over to us.

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Transatlantic Crossing, • Topics: c267  science  research • (1) CommentsPermalink

June 14, 2016

Let’s go sailing!

Philip Swanson, Oberlin College

Pacific Reef Expedition

Imagine this. It’s four in the morning, and you’re standing on the deck of a sailboat hurling north through the Pacific. A series of squalls off the bow drown out the guiding light of stars, and the bow of the ship is repeatedly thrown around by monstrous waves so strong that even the roof hatches are shut to keep the waves out. You’d hope whoever was in charge of the ship that night was an expert sailor, and not a 19-year-old boy with three weeks of sailing experience. Somehow though, last night I was that boy.


June 13, 2016

Galley News

Lauren Heinen, Ship Steward

Pacific Reef Expedition

Hello all.  Lauren the steward here. I left dinner prep in Siobhan’s competent hands to come tell the outside world not to worry, we are all eating more than we should. If by some bad luck or oversleeping accident you miss a meal, never fear, the next one is only 3 hours away.


June 13, 2016

Sailing northeast

Katie Sipple, West Chester University

Transatlantic Crossing

Hello from the Cramer!
Beautiful day for some sailing! So far our log reads that we have traveled 904.5 nm, but as you all know we still have a ways to go. It is a wonderful 25.5 °C currently and most of us are outside enjoying the nice weather while we have it! During my 13:00 to 19:00 watch today, we saw a turtle, dolphins, a baby turtle and over 200 Portuguese Man-o-Wars (Physalia physalia) in six hours.


June 12, 2016

Operation Sierra Charlie

Emma Guyot, Bowdoin College

Transatlantic Crossing

Behold, arctic tern
Bird of eternal summer
Flapping in the breeze.

(Collaborative spontaneous haiku at the sight of said bird – Morning Watch (A))

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Transatlantic Crossing, • Topics: c267  swim call • (9) CommentsPermalink

June 12, 2016

Junior Watch Officer Phase

CJ Brown, Columbia University

Pacific Reef Expedition

Today marks the beginning of our JWO/JLO phase. While some of you might be wondering what Jennifer Lopez has to do with sailing, JWO and JLO stand for Junior Watch Officer and Junior Lab Officer. This final phase of our trip marks our taking on more responsibility and stepping into the roles we have watched our mates and scientists excellently perform. While our expert staff will still be there to correct mistakes before they ultimately occur, they will no longer direct us step by step, and they expect us to come up with a plan and execute it.


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