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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

October 27, 2014

Ready to Go Aloft

Hugh MacKay, A Watch, Vassar College

image

From left to right, B watchers Val, Monica, Lauren Speare, and Kristen complete aloft training.

Ship's Log

Current Position
21° 57.1’S x 177° 24.3’E

Course and Speed
175° and moving 4.8 kts

Sail Plan
Sailing under the four lowers, doubled reefed main, and the JT

Weather
Tank top weather by day, sweater/flannel weather by evening

Today marks our third day at sea on our way to New Zealand. Despite being this far in, I have yet to accept that I will not be on land for another 11 days (and I think that I speak for most of us when I say that). Much like the rower I am trained to be, I am taking this long voyage one day at a time and focusing not on the distance that separates our crew from the finish, but on the present.

Today was a historical day for students aboard for two reasons, the first being that we all completed our aloft checklists. For the past week and a half we have been working on memorizing safety procedures, lookout responsibilities, and navigation information so that we can be trained to go aloft on the boats main mast (half the reason I even wanted to come on this trip). Expect that within the next two days many of us will be completing our actual aloft training and will be climbing up the mast! Today also was a big day because we had our first group meetings on our oceanography projects that will be compile the data collected from all of our science deployments in a way that will be useful to the people on all five of the islands we visited. Up until today we had only fuzzy ideas of what water samples were being collected for, but now it is all starting to make more sense as we begin to work with the scientists on board to put it in the context of anthropogenic change, physical properties, nutrient changes, and light and productivity.

I know that I said I am trying to focus on the present, but there is one thing we are all anticipating: Halloween. Being a crew member and student on a ship is a serious responsibility, so we all look forward to chances to have some fun and let loose a little. Big preparations are already underway in the costume department. I myself am having a hard time deciding on whether to be Popeye or Captain Jason for Halloween. On top of that, I will be the assistant steward and have already begun an aggressive campaign for permission to make as many pumpkin flavored things as I can. Fall is my favorite season, and I am determined that there will be a taste of fall if it’s the last thing I do!

- Hugh

Previous entry: Underway towards New Zealand    Next entry: Top of the Foremast

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