Hayden Amidon

UW undergraduate student, Hayden Amidon, samples fluids taken from 8500 ft beneath the oceans’ surface. Credit: M. Elend, University of Washington; V19.

June 17, 2019

3:24 pm

I just woke up to do a CTD cast with Ramya, Stephen, and Hill. I’m writing this while we wait for the rosette to reach depth, as we’re doing the cast all the way down to around 2500 m.

The watch this morning was great, I finally got a full Jason dive. It was a straight forward dive, swapping one of the CTD, DOSTAD, OPTAA stands. It went very smoothly and we saw a lot of life. On the way down there were several squid and a huge jellyfish with an interesting matte texture to it.

While on the bottom, there were tons of brittle stars and a ratfish that would stay near Jason for most of the dive. After getting relieved I went and had a great breakfast, today was waffles. I missed lunch so I can’t wait for dinner.

7:33 pm

Just finished a CTD cast. This is my second one on the cruise so far. I helped with oxygen and salinity, and put away all the oxygen samples. I had loaner boots on the whole time from the start of the winching to putting away all the oxygen, so I really need to take a shower.

Dinner was delicious, so I’m all ready for my shift tomorrow morning. However it’s gonna be in the middle of a 17 hour long transit, so my time will be occupied grabbing good shots from the Jason reel.

June 16, 2019:

2:09 pm

My shift this morning was a wash. I was hoping to get a full dive in, but Jason lost power at around 500m depth so they aborted the dive. I was on standby for the rest of my watch, but Jason didn’t get back in the water until about 9:00 am, after my watch ended and I had gone to sleep. There’s still more dives to come, so hopefully tonight I will get a watch with a full dive during it.

12:07 am

Took a shower to wake me up a bit before my watch. I woke up to have dinner earlier so I’m not hungry which is good. Jason just recovered COVIS so there’ll probably be a short transit over to Axial Base.

After we get there, Jason will dive to go swap the CTD package on the bottom, so hopefully this will finally be the watch where I get a full dive to log. I’m not feeling very awake right now so I hope I can make it through the night, I’ll have to go get some coffee. I’m sure Katie and Lauren will poke me if I begin to nod off though.

June 15, 2019:

Day 3 – 2:34 pm

I’m switching my blog style to let me write in present tense whenever I’m up. So far my first watch was very nice and eventful with a CTD cast and Jason deployment, but my second one was during a long transit so I didn’t have much to do. We’re at Axial Base now though so I think that’ll change as we start doing more and longer dives. My previous watch was kinda hard to get through as I couldn’t sleep very well during the day so I was pretty tired, that coupled with not much to do and the heavier swaying of the ship from the transit, it was a rough few hours. I did stay up for most of it though just to try and get my internal clock adjusted to the morning shift.

At 1:00pm today the other students and I got a tour of the engine room. It was quite interesting. All the fuel the ship has is burned to make electricity in generators, and then the propellers are driven by electric motors. Pretty strange configuration, but the Chief Engineer explained that this way space is used more efficiently and the motors are easier to control. Which by the way they can apparently swivel 360 degrees, which I didn’t know either. We also saw the bow thruster room, which is another kind of jet that can swivel to orient the ship, and can also be used to move us if need be. What was reassuring is that we have about double of everything and loads of spare parts on the ship, so it’s unlikely we’d ever be stranded.

3:24 pm

Took a shower and spent a bit of time in the control van. One of the crewmen taught us some knots, though I wasn’t very good at it.

10:25 pm

I’ve been trying unsuccessfully to sleep. I just can’t seem to right now so I might as well just wait for my shift now. Luckily this will probably be the first of my shifts to be completely occupied by a Jason dive, so that’ll be fun. I missed dinner today so I’ll go get some cereal or something before my shift starts. We’ve had nice weather today with few clouds so I’m going to try and see the stars.

June 14, 2019

Once the CTD was done Lauren, who shares my shift, and I went to the control van. We only got to do the formalities of departure before our shift was over though, which was disappointing. I don’t think we’ll be lacking in hours in the control van by the end of the trip however. After my shift I had some breakfast and went to bed. Getting used to sleeping during the day is proving difficult, though the motion of the ship is very nice to feel while in bed. I slept through the rest of the dives at slope base and now we have a 16 hour transit to axial base. Considering the amount of instruments at Axial, Jason dives should be picking up real soon and become a round the clock affair. I’m eager to spend my mornings in the van.

Aside from work, I’m ruining my clothes early into our voyage. I’ve already ripped my jacket and pants. Hopefully this is all the ripping that occurs, I don’t have a ton of spare clothes.

June 13:

Day 2 and my first shift. Mine is from 1:00 to 6:30 am. I was hoping to see the stars today, but we have some thick cloud cover that torpedoed my attempt. My shift started on the latter end of the Jason dive replacing the profiler on SC01B. After Jason was back on deck we had a short transit ahead to slope base, doing a CTD cast once we got there.

Hayden, Ramya, and Katie learn about CTD operations during Leg 2. Credit: M. Elend, University of Washington.

June 12:

We’re finally away. We left a day later than I expected, but I’m happy I got the chance to get some snacks before we left. The ship sailed out at 10:00, and we saw some whales on the way out. I got a little sea sick as we went out, but taking a nap and some Dramamine fixed me right up. I’ve been hanging out in the Jason control van and sleeping so far to get ready before my shift at 1:00. Seasickness still hasn’t returned so that’s a good sign, although it seems I may not have a dive scheduled during my first shift, which is a bit of a bummer, but I’ll have a CTD cast to do once we make it out to Slope Base.