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SEA Currents: SSV Robert C. Seamans
December 17, 2015
Through the “Valley of Desolation” to a Boiling Lake!
Anchored in Portsmouth, Dominica
NE Force 5-6
Pointed Towards Portsmouth
Whenever the crew talked about Dominica's boiling lake, I apparently had something else in mind. I imagined a lake with some bubbles coming to the surface, much like the first sets of bubbles that appear in ones pot as they're boiling water for some pasta. I imagined wrong, completely wrong.
After a hike through the rainforest of Dominica, during which we made umbrellas out of giant leaves, swung (very carefully) on vines, waded through fresh streams, and went over hills and through streams, we reached our destination, the second largest boiling lake in the world. We approached the lake, a cloud of steam rolled ominously towards us. Within seconds, we were enveloped in the hot air and basked in its nice heat. However, immediately after, I regretted taking a deep breath at that exact instant and filling my lungs with warm, sulfurous air. Wow, after a month of being at sea and smelling the sea breeze, the smell of sulfur was too overwhelming, but it was definitely a change from what I was used to. But once the winds shifted, the cloud of steam disappeared and we were all greeted by the amazing site of the boiling lake. Instead of the small bubbles I had imagined, there was a waterfall cascading into the lake, and in the center of the lake was a rolling boil at least six feet wide and rising about a foot or more from the water's surface. It was so immense, that I expected a monster to rise out of it and grace us with its presence.
I can't begin to fathom what people must have thought when they first discovered this lake. Dominica's boiling lake was truly something amazing and something I will always remember.
To top our excursion off, on the way back from the lake, our group stopped at a little swimming hole that was filled with nice, perfect temperature water. As I relaxed in the warm water with a small waterfall cascading on my shoulders, I thought to myself how happy I am to be here and what an amazing place Dominica truly is. I would love to come back another time and explore more of this beautiful island.
That's all for now folks, it's time for me to get some sleep before watch.
Family and loved ones, as always you are in my thoughts and I love you all so incredibly much. It was great talking to you while we were anchored here in Dominica, and I can't wait to talk again when I'm in St. Croix in 5 days! I miss you, love you, and hope all of you are safe and well.