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Current position of the SSV Robert C. Seamans. Click on the vessel to view position history. Use the tools, top right, to change the map style or view data layers.

SEA Currents: SSV Robert C. Seamans

Elliot Rappaport, Professor of Nautical Science

The Robert C Seamans sailed from Opua, Bay of Islands, NZ this morning in moderate northwesterly winds after a successful stop that included visits to the nearby town of Russell and the historic Waitangi Treaty grounds. Yesterday at the wharf we experienced several hours of rain and gusty wind as the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Gita passed to the south of us, but our stay was otherwise unaffected. Gita is forecast to gradually dissipate as she moves away from the South Island over the next 24 hours, and we are looking forward to the advent of some fair weather as we begin our passage towards Wellington.

As always, we are grateful for our local network of friends and colleagues, who were a great resource in planning ahead for any possible contingencies related to this weather event. New Zealand is at its heart a nation of sailors, always willing to assist in adjusting plans when necessary.

Jessica Duong, B Watch, Trinity College

Over this past weekend we completed our first sailing leg of the trip, navigating northwest of Auckland towards the Bay of Islands. Working in a six hours on watch and 12 hours off watch schedule, we gained introductory experience in various watch duties (boat checks, lookout, steering at the helm). While we motored for the first portion of our voyage, we eventually turned off the engine and set the four lower sails (jib, fore stays’l, main stays’l, mains’l) to truly sail the Seamans.

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
MetBob Weathergram
A blog post by noted New Zealand weather guru, Bob McDavitt

My good wishes to the University students who are crewing on Training Tall Ship SSV ROBERT C SEAMANS. The vessel visited Auckland last week and sailed to Opua late in the week. Captain, and Professor in Nautical Science, Elliot Rappaport invited me on deck. I especially like that the students manage a full-time marine lab and also are one of the VOS (Voluntary Observing Ships) that send in regular weather reports using properly calibrated instruments. These observations, around the planet, are part of what helps the global weather models in touch with the real world.

Read the full blog post

Katie Armstrong, A Watch, Mount Holyoke College

Hello there landlubbers!

Today is a very special day for S-277, as this is the first time we are not at dock or anchor while aboard the Bobby C! We left anchor outside of the Auckland marina at about 1500 and have our sights set for Russell, in Aotearoa New Zealand’s Bay of Islands.



Annie Roberts, B Watch, Boston College

Hi there, friends and family!

Today began earlier for B Watch than it did for the other watches, as we were assigned to the first dock watch. Dock watch was done in pairs for two-hour shifts. It involved doing boat checks each hour from 2100 through 0700 in the morning, when we ate breakfast.

Summer Stafford, B Watch, University of Redlands

Hello friends! Today not only marks Valentine’s Day here in NZ, but also our first full day on the ship. We started the morning off by splitting up to do some more training. We spent last night doing the “orientation station rotation” at which we filled our brains to the brim with new boat knowledge, including how to do an hourly boat check and check the engine room.

Jeff Wescott, Assistant Professor of Anthropology

The students, faculty, and crew of S-277, The Global Ocean New Zealand, have all arrived aboard SSV Robert C. Seamans, docked in Auckland. Following two full days of intensive ship training, coupled with visits to a local Maori community and the Auckland War Memorial Museum, we will set sail for the Bay of Islands.


The students of S-277, The Global Ocean, will join the SSV Robert C. Seamans in Auckland, New Zealand on February 13th. They will depart the ship in Christchurch on March 23rd, after port stops in Russell, Wellington, and Dunedin.

Categories: Robert C. Seamans, • Topics: s277  study abroad  ships company • (10) CommentsPermalink
Sarah Zephier, A Watch, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The Global Ocean

Today is the day, we set sail but this time not on a six-week adventure in the South Pacific, but instead we set sail back home, returning to our universities, transferring to new universities or starting Basic Training. No matter where we are going, we, the students of S-276, will always be taking the memories and experiences with us in ways we have never known coming into this before.

Lindsey Call, B-watch, Amherst College
The Global Ocean

Hey there!

Lindsey here, reporting from the deck of the good Robert C. Seamans and fresh from lone 2200-2300 anchor watch. It was a quiet watch tonight- today marks the end of all of our schoolwork with a final round of research presentations, and the students are finally free from the stress of getting those last few leadership journal entries written down and the final paragraphs of their MHC paragraphs reviewed and edited.

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