Sunday 26th May 2013
We left Catalina 4 days ago and have had nothing but bad weather since!Weather has been so bad we haven’t been able to begin our scientific programme due to the sea is making things too difficult. The ocean is a steely grey in colour. What a welcome to the Pacific! Undoubtedly, the price to pay for gaining access.
In three days’ time, we should be a little to the south of our targeted area – thus has the sea decided.We’re keeping our fingers crossed and hoping we shall be able to heave to as planned.Today we cast off a NOAA drifter buoy (for characterising marine currents) just before longitude 125° west; it will be giving us information regarding currents before reaching the anticyclonic gyre..We fished a bonito which we quickly gutted and Claire measured pollutants in it using the Toulouse University IMRCP laboratory’s pollutant sensors that we have dubbed “bobis” (as in SpongeBob).
Concerning the crew, all is well in spite of the difficult conditions and night watches accomplished in mist. We’re managing to eat properly thanks to the large number of ready-made meals we bought and which are very handy in this bad weather. Impossible to take a shower without being sick these past few days. This morning, the captain ordered us to shower; he couldn’t stand it any longer! These Frenchies are living up to their reputation!!
In spite of the bad weather, we have spotted a lot of marine life – we have come across schools of dolphins and two baleen whales in addition to many sea birds including two albatross. And this afternoon, some Japanese army boats.
More news soon. – 7th C Crew