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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

March 16, 2016


Madison Atterbury, A Watch, Hamilton College

The Global Ocean: New Zealand

Fresh fruit resupply from Wellington! Woohoo!

Ship's Log

Current Position
44°34.70’ S x 174°09.05’ E

60 NM Southeast of Banks Peninsula on the South Island

3.1 knots

069 PSC

Sail Plan
Four Lowers (Jib, Fore Stays’l, Main Stays’l, Mains’l) with single reef in the Mains’l, and the Fisherman. Sailing towards Dunedin

Cloudy with a SE wind of 8 knots

Souls on Board

Good Evening World!

The SSV Robert C. Seamans had quite the day out here in the Pacific Ocean, east of the South Island and near the Chatham Rise!

A Watch had afternoon watch today—which means a great morning of sleeping in and a mini-class with Jeff and Elliot at 1100, where we talked about what else is going to happen in our short 1.5 weeks remaining on the ship. We have moved in the “shadow phase” of learning about the ship, where during each watch there is a student who is the shadow watch officer. The shadow discusses with our mate or assistant scientist about the decisions that are made and why and are in charge of running some of the sail handling and watch turnovers. This step is meant to prepare us for being a junior watch officer.

Today was an interesting day composed primarily of learning all the directions a ship can move including sideways and backwards, when the waves and wind are just right (or wrong, since we are trying to make some forward progress). So deck watch turned into us trying to keep the ship moving forward slowly, learning how to tie knots, calculating sunset, and talking to albatrosses—there was a flock of about 20 of them!

One of the best parts of today was the Tim Tam slams. Now some of you might be asking, what is a Tim Tam Slam? Well, look below to find a “how to” on doing Tim Tam Slams!

  • Get a Tim Tam (a lovely chocolate kit-kat like biscuit with different flavors like caramel and peanut butter; you can Google it if you’re still unclear)
  • Make a hot beverage of your choice—hot chocolate, coffee etc.
  • Bite off opposite corners of your Tim Tam
  • Drink said hot beverage through your Tim Tam until it begins to crumble, then quickly eat it all at once!
  • Feel incredibly happy.

Yesterday, we did an incredible activity during class. We talked as a group about what we have learned about the ocean, what was important or memorable in these studies, and what we still have questions about. This class activity gave people a great opportunity to share their realizations about the vast and beautiful ocean that we have experienced over the past six weeks. One big question that came up at the end of this discussion was: what we should be doing with this information? We learned so much about the ocean and issues that it is facing, mostly because of human impact, but how should we proceed? This is a question with many answers—but it is a great thing to think about as we make our way to Dunedin and then Christchurch and our time at sea comes to a close (for now).

In keeping with my blog post tradition here is a joke—credit to Eric for telling basically every person on the ship and intensely studying the Pretty Good Joke Book: “Have you heard of the auto mechanic who was addicted to brake fluid? No. He says it’s not a problem—he can stop anytime.” (Laughter, mostly from Eric).

- Madison

Categories: Robert C. Seamans,The Global Ocean: New Zealand, • Topics: s264  sailing  life at sea • (1) Comments
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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 Anh Tran on March 18, 2016

soooooo it was you guys doing the circle dance we saw on the navigation map a few days back?!? smile ... good job getting to Dunedin on schedule! looking forward to reading the rest of your journey.



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