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Dispatch 8: Barrow, Alaska

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Luc Rainville

August 2-3, 2007

We stopped in Barrow to transfer a crew member off the boat for medical reasons. It was nothing too serious, but it's better to be safe than sorry up here. That also gave us the chance to get some fresh supplies, and send a few samples back to IOS for an early look.

The last day has been a little quieter. After finishing the CTD line near the Mackenzie River, we followed the continental shelf along the 3000 m isobath while doing a series of XCTDs (expendable CTD sensors, measuring temperature and salinity profiles without having to stop the ship). That gave everybody some time to catch up on analyses, data entry, and sleep. The transfer occurred around noon, and this evening we reached the beginning of another CTD line across the continental slope, which, amazingly enough, we called the Barrow line. We have hardly seen any ice today and yesterday, and because the wind is blowing quite strongly, sea state is a little rougher and we are starting to feel the ship rolling... It's going to be a long night for the CTD team.

Barrow, Alaska. The northernmost point in continental North America.
Unfortunately John Bray had to leave the Louis. He's boarding the helicopter with our medical officer, Suzanne Corby. The stop in Barrow allowed us to get some supplies. The chief cook, Paul Devlin, emptied Barrow's grocery store of all the fresh fruits and vegetables he could find.
Hurrah for fresh lettuce!!! Deckhand Bill May, saving lives three boxes at a time.
And I thought the Arctic Ocean was supposed to be calm! 20 kts wind, waves, and even a swell. Despite the weather, Hugh Maclean - seen here through the window of the CTD shack - and the CTD group keep working.
All photos by Luc Rainville


Last updated: October 7, 2019

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