SEA CONDITIONS: 2 - 3 m westerly swell
ICE CONDITIONS: Occasional ice berg
LATITUDE: 60.22S LONGITUDE: 83.29E
HEADING: 60 degrees
SPEED: 15 knots
DISTANCE COVERED LAST 24 HOURS: 289nm
DISTANCE TO GO: 2488nm
AIR TEMPERATURE: -1.7c
SEA TEMPERATURE: -0.63c
We continue to make very good progress on our voyage back to Hobart although today is a little rough as we smash head on into the swell. We had an abandon ship exercise this morning with everyone having to muster out on the helideck. There were a few green faces among us.
Most people are staying in their cabins today and not venturing out and there is a lot of chundering going on with either the smell of chunder or disinfectant wafting through the corridors. The conditions should improve overnight as the wind change direction which will hopefully result in the wind and swell being behind us.
There has been a marked increase in the air temperature as we progress towards Hobart, with the air temperature rising twenty three degrees since Monday. We now have an air temperature of only -1.8c, and water temperatures have now climbed into positive figures. My cabin is now so much warmer and it’s time to get my shorts out again. I spent all morning sorting out photos to the point where I can’t stand to look at them anymore. While everyone is lying on their bunk I thought it would be a good time to do some washing.
We will cross our second time zone tonight and will have to put our clocks forward an hour again. Darn, I forgot to turn on the washing machine. I spent a bit of time up on the bridge today watching the huge bow smash into the large swell and send huge waves and spray in all directions. It was rather uncomfortable so after a while I went to see what was happening out there in radio land. Nothing, not a thing, propagation was dead so I went back to my cabin and watched a few documentaries and wrote up my blog notes. At least there is less movement on the lower decks.
This weather drains you of all your energy and motivation and you just want to lie down or sleep. I am going to have to go into rehab when I get back to wean myself off cuposoup’s. It’s a habit I picked up working out in the field to help stay warm.
This ship seems to have a soul and talks and sings to itself. It has a passive anti-roll system with a series of holes through the hull and they squeak and sing like a whale does, sometimes even letting out a scream. It’s quite disturbing at first but like the banging in my roof you get used to it.
Its official, I’m now hot and have to take my shirt off. I can just imagine how hot Perth is going to be. We are expected to arrive in Hobart on the 19th of April during Easter holidays which is causing havoc already as people with cars in storage can’t get them out and all accommodation in Hobart is fully booked out as well as all flights and the ferry to Melbourne. After fourteen months away we have timed our arrival perfectly.