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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. Dates and times use GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

SEA Currents: SSV Robert C. Seamans

February 22, 2015

Phase Two: Shadowing

Kyle St. Pierre, A Watch, University of Rhode Island

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

Members of A watch aloft on the main yard: David, Sarah, Claudia and Janet.

Ship's Log

37° 39.943’S, 179° 35.024’E

Souls on Board

A couple days ago began phase two of our three-phase process aboard the ship. Phase one was an instructional phase where everyone got the hang of things here on the ship. Phase two is where one person in each watch shadows our watch officer, either the assistant scientist in the lab, or the mate on deck. Then phase three is when we assume the role of a junior watch officer or a junior lab officer and we are in charge of the watch.

Today, during my six-hour afternoon watch I got the opportunity to shadow my watch officer on deck. When we came on watch, Chief Mate Will asked me to assign people to different things for the start of our watch, which in comparison to what I needed to do later was an easy task. During the afternoon we had a slight increase in wind for the first half of our watch and things progressed as usual. I continued to keep track of the time to make sure the helmsperson (the person steering the ship) was relieved on time, as well as getting hourly boat checks, plotting our positions and weather observations. About an hour and a half into watch, Will let me know that our captain, Elliot, wanted us to double gybe to get some practice handling sails and mastering the maneuver itself. For those of you who don’t know, gybing is a way of turning the ship so the wind will be blowing from the other side of the vessel. It is sort of an intricate process with a number of steps since we have to adjust all the sails so they will work with the new wind direction. I needed to brief my watch on what was happening and give out commands. At first glance, it was a little intimidating. However, with the help of my shipmates, we completed our double gybe without any issues.

Though it was not the first time our watch had worked together to gybe, it was a new perspective that I got in telling everyone what needed to be done and when. We have had some awesome experiences so far and I look forward to more time with my watch and getting things done.

- Kyle

Categories: Robert C. Seamans,The Global Ocean: New Zealand, • Topics: s257  sailing • (5) Comments


Leave a public comment for students and crew to read when they reach their next port and have access to the internet!

#1. Posted by Denise Munger on February 23, 2015

How fun to see the pictures and read of the adventures aboard ship—and the camaraderie you are all enjoying.  We are buried in snow in Colorado, but enjoying the sights of the South Pacific, and learning about Maori culture!  I love the pictures of you on the yard (though so much easier to see after the fact, knowing you are down safe!)  Love, mom and dad

#2. Posted by Kyle's Grandparents on February 23, 2015

Kyle, it has been wonderful reading all the blogs and knowing about your adventure.  What an exciting experience!  We are learning a lot and the pictures are great. We waited patiently to see you in one.  You all look like you are having a great time and yes, it looks like you are family. The experiences and friendships, will last you a life time.  Be safe have fun and keep the blogs coming.  Love, Mima & Papa

#3. Posted by kyle on February 23, 2015

It looks like you and your group are learning quite a lot about sailing . I am sure your uncle will be thinking of how you two can get together and do some sailing when you get back . Of course it will be on a much smaller vessel . I have been reading all the blogs that have been sent and was glad to read you and all your mates keep up the good work learn a lot and enjoy the rest of your trip. Love mem and pep

#4. Posted by Cathy GEIB on February 23, 2015

Ok Claud, are you guys tethered?  I do not see any ropes oops , I mean lines?
Be careful! Love you

#5. Posted by Kim on February 28, 2015

I am so glad to hear you will be docking in Wellington today. It will give those sick bellies a chance to calm down a bit. enjoy your time on land. Kyle, I had the “privilege” of spending a couple of hours with Mr. Owen at a fundraiser the other night.  He was very excited to hear about your travels and hopes to see you at Absolute as he is looking for a new gym. Love you, be safe, and feel great! Mom



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