Monday, July 14, 2008

Nearly there....

Lat - 66' 58S
Long - 69' 48W
Area - West of Adelaide Island
Air Temperature - -16.6C
Sea State - Pancake ice! 

After a great Drake Passage crossing (flat calm all the time!) we're nearly there, we should be on station (G - we're starting backwards!) by tomorrow morning/midday. Last night was a noisy one, we hit our first ice on the journey and it really reverberates through the ship when we plough through. And it's only pancake ice, so nothing stuck together to 'break' through as yet, so it may get noisier tonight. From the satellite pictures we actually might be lucky and not hit any solid ice at all, so shouldn't slow us down any. Today was really pretty, pancake ice, slick ice, Adelaide Island in the distance and a beautiful sunrise casting an orange and pink glow everywhere, with the moon on the opposite side. The days are so short here now that the sun will never rise more than a blip above the horizon only for around 4 hrs, and the moon is pretty much out all the time. I hope the rest of our days are like this - the air is so clear and with the white ice to bounce off, the vistas can be spectacular, the sun really casts a beautiful glow. Makes only having a few hours of sunlight total worth it.  Been keeping busy labeling endless numbers of tubes and marking up my notebook ready for samples. I'm ready, I hate sitting around not doing much on cruises, drives me crazy. Of course I should probably be writing that proposal........

Haven't figured out anything else i'm missing from my gear, so thats good. Missing my alarm clock badly, it was one of these really nice alarm clocks that plays all these soothing sounds, and was a splurge as i'm such an insomniac. Works great on the boat as it dulls a lot of the engine and other noises that are around and really did help me get to sleep quicker. People don't realise being at sea is really noisy, there is always noise from the ship running, let alone any winches and thrusters used for sampling. It's nice to get off the ship and be in total quiet.


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