The ship was working in the Shumagin Islands today. We got here around 10am after a rough twenty hour transit from Dutch Harbor. The weather turned quite beautiful despite the forecast of a storm on its way.
I started out yesterday afternoon feeling the nine foot seas, despite the motion sickness medication. I slept through a good portion of it and slept quite soundly through the night with the mild noise of the engine and the rocking of the boat.
The full nights rest was a good catch-up from the previous few days. Thursday, Friday, and much of Saturday we were doing 24 hour operations collection data in the southeastern Bering Sea, which becomes Bristol Bay at some point. My shifts were four to eight am and four to eight pm. I got a short nap midday Thursday before the night shift and stayed up through the night to get a good rest the following day. On Friday morning, I got to bed after falling asleep in my chair sitting at the computer after my shift. Three hours into my "night's rest" I got woken up by a fire emergency. I mustered to my station to assisting in the dress out of the fire team and then found out it was a false alarm. By then there was no way I was getting back to sleep. Stayed up through the night again and got some decent sleep mid-day Saturday.
Towards the beginning of last week a couple of people in the survey department went to tend and visit the grave site of Karl Mueller. Karl Mueller, along with Maurice G. Rudisell, died in a hydrographic survey accident aboard a launch of the U.S.S. Surveyor in May of 1938. Their boat struck a previously unknown reef now called Rudisell Reef. The bay in which the accident occured was named Mueller Bay.
Rudisell was buried near the site of the accident on Umnak Island approximately 200 miles southwest of Dutch Harbor and the city of Unalaska where Mueller was brought to rest.
In addition to tending the grave of a fellow fallen surveyor we established a GPS benchmark on the plaque over his grave.
On the weekend of August second and third I got out on the island with the XO and one of the junior officers. We went camping in the hills around Dutch Harbor. The majority of the trip was in the fog. Even got a little lost with the XO while taking a walk away from the camp site. Sunday the fog lifted around noon.
After joining the much of the crew at the Grand Aleutian Hotel for an excellent Sunday brunch we headed back out to explore more of the Island.
As we drove the dirt road that makes a loop over the Northeast end of the island we stumbled on a trail to Ugadaga Bay. The trail was historically used by the Unangan People as a portage route to trade pelts in Unalaska. We spent much of the afternoon hiking the trail, exploring the beach and napping in the tundra.
And just a little something to leave you with, I got a shipment of several corncob pipes and accessories two weeks back. I have been practicing with the pipe every few days since the shipment came in.
Several people have asked why I started smoking a pipe. With a bit of a grin I respond one of two ways, either "What better way to epitomize a sailor?" or "I see it as a life skill, much like scotch tasting."