Svalbard

The things I do to escape Open Days!

By Carol // Friday 28 Sep // 21:40:56 // 2 Comments

Ok this is completely crazy……no one warned me about this! I thought that the Spanish cruise last Oct would be preparation for anything, but this outweighs anything I’ve ever done in the name of work! Pitching about on a roiling sea (roughly sea state 7) at 4am in the morning trying to do a CTD cast (conductivity, temperature and salinity) whilst fighting the ever present sea sickness is certainly a novelty! However, the results we are getting are really good, which kind of makes up for not being able to eat anything for the past 48 hours (see above comment re. sea sickness!)

It’s a very humbling experience being out here in the middle of nowhere on a beautiful schooner attempting to sail between Spitsbergen and Greenland. We reckon that bar a few icebreakers, we are the northerly most ship in the world at the moment – certainly of the sailing variety. Already we have had to alter our course due to the ever changing pattern of sea ice that is currently lying off the east coast of Greenland. Today we were told by our skipper Gert that the is 10-40% ice cover across the entrance to Scoresby Sund, and that it is lying in a 10-20km thick band – the implications are that with the forecast southerly for the next couple of days, we may well be able to get into the Sund when we arrive sometime on Sunday.

Hopefully you’ll be able to read these blogs on Sat 29th on the open day at BGS in Edinburgh – but keep track of our exploits once we land in Scoresby Sund via the Cape Farewell website. We can get emails back via the website so anyone who’d like to ask us any questions please feel free! Once we get the ID number for the ARGO float we deployed yesterday, you can also check up on its progress via the met office website as it journeys with the ocean currents for the next 3 years. Luckily for all those I threatened a mammoth photo fest to when I got back, the sea sickness and weather has kept the camera at bay for a few days…..but I’m sure I’ll still get the odd 100 together for you!

So adieu for now. Its time to go and stand out in the cold and wet with the satellite phone to try and get all our recent blogs and photos through. And then off to bed for a few hours before my next watch duty at 4am……and time to start watching for the sea ice as we’re only about 60 miles away from the start of it!

Tags: Carol Cotterill

2 Comments

  1. Peter Cotterill Saturday 29 Sep, 2007 // 9:38:56

    Hi darling, have at last got access to a website. Did you enjoy launching your £25,000 of non-retrievable equipment? Will write again when fully set up at no:6 – Dad

  2. Kate Black Wednesday 3 Oct, 2007 // 14:09:21

    Hey Carol! And I thought storms in the Indian Ocean were rough!
    Sorry we couldn’t catch up before you left, but thanks for the parking for Murrayfield. Will stay in touch – don’t get wet :-)

    P.S. Have gone blind so Fletch can sit through the photos twice – once on my behalf!

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