23 May 2010, Rough Morning, Beautiful Afternoon
Yesterday's storm is now moving off to our east, so the winds have eased. Simon, our captain, knows we have much to accomplish, so he gets the ship and its occupants moving early. The very able and dedicated crew are quick to rise and have rapidly prepared for our departure from Gisborne (we came in last night to seek shelter from the storm and get some labwork done.) I (JP) hear the engine start at 6AM and start waking up. After a few minutes, I step into the mess area, and people are stirring. Of course, Carol is already slaving away in the galley, preparing another fabulous (and large) breakfast.
On our steam out to our first site, it's obvious that some messy waves have been left behind. We refer to these conditions as a "confused sea", indicating the waves appear to be coming from every which direction, creating a quite uncomfortable ride on the ship. At our first site for sampling, the coring operations don't go smoothly. Due to the challenging conditions, instead of cancelling all operations, we decide to head farther south to a site more in the lee of some of the weather. The sun starts to peak through the clouds. At our second and subsequent sites, we have nice views of the Poverty Bay shelf coastline, with scenic cliffs illuminated by sun rays and rainbows. Ultimately it turns out to be a beautiful and very productive work day. After coring at sunset, we head back into Gisborne at dark, to rest up and maybe get some tripod deployments done in the morning… but another storm approaches.