Voyage blog days 5-7

Over the past couple of days Tangaroa has come through rough seas although the conditions have not managed to dampen our spirits on this exciting journey!! 

Winds have reached 40 knots and swells reached six metres, over a 24 hour period.  Sleep was a little restless for many.

There seemed to be an increase of nauseated stomachs with dinner being passed over in favour of dry crackers in order to settle the stomach.  The exception was all the crew who have done this voyage many times before.  They keep assuring us though, that this is not even rough, and that there will be far worse to come at some stage throughout the voyage.

As we inch closer to our destination through the large rolling swells, everybody onboard has icebergs on the mind. When shall we see our first? How big will it be?  What will it look like?  To add to the excitement onboard, the Captain set up an iceberg sweepstake for the sighting of the first and everyone on board has been eagerly participating.

Today, in the early hours, the eagerly awaited call of “Iceberg ahoy!” came as we passed our first big iceberg - the size of a great house looming an iridescent blue against the night. Since dawn, the sea conditions have calmed and now the vessel makes only a slight motion from side to side as we move south

The conditions outside are now very cold though, with the water only 0.2 degrees Celsius and the air temperature just below freezing.  A light snow has been falling all morning, which is beautiful although a little surreal, and thankfully not yet heavy enough to build up on the deck.  All the crew are now wearing full exposure suits, hats, gloves and thermals in order to stay warm while out on deck.

Tonight we will pass close to the eastern side of Scott Island tonight before reaching the pack ice, which will no doubt be a highlight for the week and an incredible photographic opportunity for those inclined.

Stacey Mulgrew

- MFish Client Representative

First week’s Science Highlights (PDF 192 KB)

Entering the sea ice at around 66°30'S. (Photo: Stacey Mulgrew, NZ IPY-CAML).
Research subject: Coasts