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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer

May 08, 2016

Farewell Bermuda

Robin Petersen-Rockney, B-Watch, Oberlin College

Marine Biodiversity and Conservation

To all our mothers. Love, the Cramer

33° 10’ N x 064° 37’ W

Description of location
Just North of Bermuda

4.4 kts

Its mostly clear, though hazy on the horizons. The wind is 8 knots or so out of the West.

Souls on Board

Well, the storm passed and we are under way. It was fairly clear and sunny this morning when we woke up and we made our final preparations for leaving the Isle of Bermuda. This involved waking up early and getting back into our normal watch schedule. We pulled up dock lines, took off sail ties, and prepped the boat to get underway. It almost went off without a hitch, but the anchor we had set out to keep us off the dock during the previous days’ wind and rain had dug deep and required quite a bit of hauling and maneuvering of the boat to pull up. But, before long it was on board and we were underway. We sailed out of St. George Harbor under the four lowers and the tops’l.

I was anticipating little wind and poor sailing on account of us having sat out the storm, but I was pleasantly disappointed. Nothing could be seen of the ocean from our dock, but coming out of the narrow harbor mouth, with beautiful White-Tailed Tropicbirds wheeling overhead, we were met with a rich wind and nice swells. As the pilot boat picked up their pilot we were able to come off and start sailing. We did pull in the tops’l as we sailed close to the wind, as I feel like we only had it out to show more sail to the other two tall ships docked by us. Sailing wise we had a wonderful morning and afternoon. We had strong winds out of the West almost all day pushing us at a good 5 knots, plus it was partially cloudy and not too hot. I thought it was some of our best sailing yet. Others might disagree though.

It was rough getting back to sailing after so long on shore. Most of us, if not all of us, had gotten used to solid ground again and the transition back to sea, especially with the large swells we had today, was tough. I just had to take a break from writing this to sit a stint on deck, I wasn’t quite sick, but certainly not my best. I think it is mainly this little library, it is definitely the worst place to be on a soft stomach.

While I was up on the quarter deck I got to do some stargazing, which was great and something I hadn’t even realized I missed while in port. The stars had just come out, there was still a light haze on the western horizon, and the waxing moon was just a sliver. I was glad of the break and saw three satellites in addition to Jupiter and some of our brighter stars.

Anyways, back to my narrative. It was like starting all over again, maybe even worse, because this was a whole new motion and right off the bat the swells were huge and rolling the boat all over the place. As we got further out from Bermuda and were able to turn towards the north more and pick up speed it did get better and I think that with a day or two back at sea we will all be fine once again. We did our first science station this side of Bermuda, setting out our neuston net and collecting a bunch of plastic and Porpita porpita or Blue Buttons, but not much else. Luckily no Portuguese Man-o-war of which we saw a few sail by in the opposite direction.

I think that just about covers the day’s events. It is sad to be leaving Bermuda. I feel like we hardly had time to explore the island at all, which I would have liked to do much more thoroughly. One or two more free days to go and hike the many little refuges scattered around the island would have been nice to get to know the wildlife some more, but I (and I think others) are very happy to be back on the water and sailing again. Well, sort of sailing. The wind died down this evening and the swells picked up, we were rocking more than ever before and not making much progress, so we put on the engine and those of us not on watch will be falling asleep to its drone. Speaking of such, I have dawn watch in four hours so should probably get at least a bit of sleep. My final note is a very happy Mother’s Day to all of our mothers, thank you so much for all of your time an effort, we love you.


Categories: Corwith Cramer,Marine Biodiversity & Conservation, • Topics: life at sea  c266 • (2) Comments
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#1. Posted by Liliana Trumper on May 10, 2016

Thank you very much!!!!!
You all look very happy!! Nice to see!

Liliana, Natasha´s Mom

#2. Posted by Mary ruggiero on May 11, 2016

Thanks for the great picture and the Happy Mother’s Day Wishes!
Robin, thanks for the wonderful,descriptions.  I almost felt I was stargazing with you!



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