SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer
February 21, 2014
C251 Web Blog - 21 February 2014
18° 11.6’N X 63°53.5’W
Full and By Course Steered, 025PSC
Winds out of the East Beaufort Force 4, Seas East x North 4-6 ft, Clouds covering 1/8th of the sky are Cumulus, the temperature is 27°C
Hello again from SSV Corwith Cramer,
Time passes strangely aboard the ship. Days start and end not with the rising and setting of the sun but a small voice in your ear letting you know that your watch is beginning. It adds an intensity to life not generally found on land. Where most would be planning meals and sitting down to an evening show; our delicious and most times complex meals are crafted seemingly out of thin air by the magic of the galley, and our evening show is watching the heavens rise and set allowing us to compute our position by shooting the stars.
Today, itself, has brought further challenges and enjoyments to the age old craft of sailing. A morning and early afternoon ripe with squalls shifted completely into a bright and sunny afternoon allowing us to have class on the quarter deck. Class wrapped up the last of our creature features (presentations by students about organisms found in the seas around us) and gave us a chance to be more in touch with our ship and home with a game called “So you think you know the Cramer…Bobsled Style” in keeping with the Winter Olympics of course. This game was a race between watches to find the most lines in the set time. C watch of Emily, Kyle, Max and Anne were the victors. After class wrapped up B watch resumed the on watch role, where Brandon and I were fortunate enough to be immersed in celestial navigation. This included the use of a sextant and many charts and tables to determine our position from the sun and stars and not the GPS unit hanging on the forward bulkhead of the doghouse (our navigation center).
The amount of information we have learned as a group is quite staggering and the information we must retain and then use is only increasing from here. In not too long of a time it will be the students running (sort of) the ship, deploying nets for data collection because oh yes there is also an incredible amount of science going on as well, and generally keeping this immensely complex machine running on course, on time, and not into things. It may be a big ocean but we are not the biggest thing in it, nor are we the smallest as we found out that the ocean does indeed still rule all. I’d like to end on a not so sobering note and instead ask a question of our readers.
Currently, we are on a starboard tack with our course of 025 PSC (Per Ships Compass) sailing under the four lowers with a single reefed main, wind out of the east. With our GPS position in mind, why are we sailing north if our first port stop is Antigua? Good luck and I will post an answer in an upcoming blog post, stay tuned.
Best regards to everyone and those I love,
P.S. Hey Mom, Dad, Nicholas, Brooke I love you all and can’t wait to see you when I get back. Hopefully you will get some snail mail from me when I arrive in Antigua fingers crossed I can find the Post Office.