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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: Videos

July 11, 2014

Approach to the Equator

Marissa Shaw, B Watch, Sailing Intern


Hello to all you Lovely Land Lubbers (We love alliterations here aboard the Mama Seamans), this is Marissa, 1/3 of the D.O.D, or Department of Deckhands that is sailing this awesome PIPA SEA Semester.  Today has been yet another glorious day aboard, and as we pasted through the meteorological equator aka the Doldrums, aka the ITCZ, we have been able to secure the Main Engine and sail once more.

July 10, 2014

S254: The Interviews

Ashley Meyer & Chrissy Dykeman, C Watch, 3rd Mate & 1st Scientist


Good evening and welcome to a special segment of the S254 blog, these are your intrepid C watch officers Shlee and Chrissy reporting live from 5° North News at 2100. Tonight we bring you breaking news on the goings-on aboard the SSV Robert C Seamans. We interviewed several crew members here in the Pacific on their thoughts on a variety of topics and events that we have experienced lately. The format for the first set of questions was rapid-fire, stream-of-consciousness answers in order to get to the heart of the matter.

July 09, 2014

Launching the Argo

Molly Groskreutz, A-Watch, Wesleyan University


Today was an exciting day on the Robert C. Seamans.  It began with my first deployment of the Hydrocast!  The ships crew is divided into 3 watches and those within each watch rotate between deck duty and lab duty. Being that it took about 4 days for me to get my sea legs, I spent that time avoiding small, enclosed spaces.  I have, however, now begun to delve into the exciting scientific inquiries that are taking place in the lab.

July 08, 2014

The Magnitude of the Ocean

Clare Feely, B-Watch, Cornell University

Today marks a week aboard the Seamans!! While finding sleep amid the bustling schedule on deck has been the biggest adjustment for most, I believe we are beginning to settle into the routine of watches, meals, cleaning, and class. With watches rotating every three days, each day blends and blurs into the next. Our skin is tanning (or in some cases, reddening) to the sun’s powerful rays, our hands are toughening to the continuous processes of setting and striking sail, and our bodies are slowly, but surely, acclimating to the constant roll and sway of the ship.

July 07, 2014

In the Lab at Sea

Jessica McGlinchey, B-Watch, St. Lawrence University


It is our 6th day on the ship, with 720 nautical miles behind us, we are seeing parts of the Pacific that many never will. The vastness of the sea has become apparent in the lack of human contact we have experienced since leaving Hawaii. In fact, we have yet to see another ship out here and, to my knowledge, there have been only two airplane sightings. Yet while there is very little human life out here, we (the students of S-254) are just beginning to explore the great abundance and diversity of life around the Seamans in her lab.

July 06, 2014

The Vastness of the Ocean

Alex Ruditsky, B-Watch, Northeastern University

Hour after hour, mile after mile, the horizon remains a flat blue constant. Clouds and some rain pass by overhead intermittently throughout the day and night as swells rock the Seamans back and forth. It seems as if the surrounding world is stuck in the same loop while life on board moves forward. The ocean is a big place. And by big I mean really big. Standing at the helm of the Robert C. Seamans for a few hours, it hit me today how much of our world is covered by blue.

July 05, 2014

A Weekend, Every 3 Days

David H. Livingstone, B-Watch, University of Chicago

SEA Semester

I am actually writing this blog entry a couple of days following the fifth of July.  What with all of the commotion aboard the ship there was a gap in the entries, but I am retroactively unfolding the crease.

I had the pleasure of having the fifth be my weekend, which allowed me to see the bookends of the day.  The “weekend” as it pertains to the Seamans and her crew is not a fixed point.  Instead, the weekend occurs every three days and it is when one’s watch schedule is for dawn and dusk, freeing the twelve midday hours for rest.  The fifth was B watch’s weekend. Dawn watch began at 0300 hours following a choppy night.  I was given the opportunity to stand as the first lookout on watch.

July 04, 2014

4th of July at Sea

Andrew Futerman, B Watch, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, Oregon State University

Today is July 4th, the day the United States of America celebrates her independence from Britain. Similarly, the Robert C. Seamans is celebrating an independence today, and her crew are glad to help with some festivities (string-poppers and apple pie, yum!) For today, the Seamans and her crew are finally independent from the shadow of Hawai'i and into the mighty Pacific Ocean.

July 03, 2014

Alien Ocean

Erik Marks, A-Watch, Hamilton College

While acting lookout during today’s morning watch, I thought of the late journalist and author Christopher Hitchens, who pointed out that a planet which “…supports life on some of its surface some of the time,” was probably not made with humans in mind. Standing on the bow of the Robert C. Seamans as we motor-sailed across an empty Pacific on the second day of our voyage, I could not help but agree.

July 02, 2014

S254, Protecting the Phoenix Islands, Begins

Jan Witting, Chief Scientist


We are on our way to the Phoenix Islands!  The island of Oahu and the lights of Honolulu are fast receding in our wake as we are heading into the night and toward Enderbury Island (our next landfall) in the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA).  Still some 1500 nautical miles to go and an equator to cross before we get there, but we are on our way.

Our mission on this six-week voyage is to make the first comprehensive oceanographic survey of PIPA, a vast marine protected area about the size of the state of California.

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