Sunday 3 October 2010

Labrador Sea Day

Bridge-tours were the program of this morning. Everybody got the chance to visit Captain Rune Andreassen and to learn more about the ship. There is the paper sea chart where the route is firstly established and then the information is transferred to a computer. The track pilot (if switched on) will set the ship on that pre-established course, although due to the action of waves and wind the real course does certainly vary. But GPS and other instruments will take care of that.
The Captain also explained about our stabilizers, which are 4 meter long “wings” with flaps that come out of each side of the vessel. They help to reduce the rolling, however, nothing can be done against the pitching. So we were lucky that the movement of today was not too bad, although we definitely had more wind than yesterday. Or is it that we all have got our sea-legs by now?
The sky cleared up during the day and the blue water with the white caps shining in the sun gave us the real ‘ocean feeling’.
Birds were again following the ship and different species could be identified: the already mentioned fulmars (again very numerous!), several flocks of kittiwakes, glaucous gulls, greater and sooty shearwaters, little auks, pomarine skuas (very special!) and even a raptor (probably a peregrine falcon) was around. Not to forget our blind passenger from Greenland, a young snow bunting on deck 7.
The sea was too rough for a good whale watching, however, some of us were lucky enough to spot small groups of pilot whales.
Otherwise, the day was used again for relaxing, attending lectures, films or a question-and-answer session with the expedition team. Some of the guests tried out the Jacuzzis and others worked out in the fitness room.
In the evening another question round took place – this time with the Captain, the Chief Engineer and the Hotel Manager to talk about topics related to Fram.