The tired, but happy Leg 1 team on the VISIONS’16 cruise came ashore to Newport, Oregon for demobilization and reloading of Cabled Array sensors and platforms yesterday at 1400, following the docking of the R/V Sikuliaq. We were graced with sunny skies and a small breeze. Larry Nielson, the Lead Field Engineer from the UW Applied Physics Laboratory, met us at the dock with trucks, equipment, and new sensors to install during Leg 2. As soon as the gangway was put down, team members not involved in offloading and loading of gear came ashore. Sitting in the rental car agency in Newport, the entire room was moving: our sea legs were still onboard and not yet used to the unmoving terra firma. We enjoyed walks along the shore and jetty, the sun, and having a day to wander by ourselves, not confined to a 261 ft long walk interrupted by several flights of stars from deck to deck on the Sikuliaq.
Today, with the help of a shore crane and a lot of teamwork by the engineers and ship crew, all gear was loaded onto the Sikuliaq to begin Leg 2. Similar to Leg 1, the deck is full of gear to be installed during this 13-day Leg: we will visit all of the cables sites that comprise the NSF’s Cabled Array. Within just over 24 hours, we have offloaded the ship and reloaded it, and are now diving at the Oregon Offshore site where we will install a Benthic Experiment Platform hosting several instruments, a digital still camera, and a zooplankton instrument. Leg 2 begins…..