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We’re in Iceland – thanks for traveling with us!

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


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Whoa, we are in Iceland. Our thirty days at sea are over. This is the sappy wrap up post, so I’ll try to keep the poetic waxing to a minimum.

In the last 30 days, the scientists aboard the R/V Knorr have woken up early, gone to bed late, collected data, fought about which condiments were superior, eaten (a lot), sampled, sequenced, read, broke, fixed and finagled. They worked through setbacks, like a bearcat attack on some of our instruments, and shared excitement, like when they found a bloom. There were tense moments, but overall no one punched anyone else and everybody’s pride seems to be, mostly, intact.

And, often behind the scenes, the crew of the R/V Knorr made everything possible. Without them we would have no food, water or scientific equipment. They put up with our wacky route, hauled in and tossed out our gear, taught us new card games, and patiently answered when I pointed at about a million things and said “what’s that do?”

Of course, much of the work remains ahead. The scientists have collected thousands of samples that will take months to analyze. When they get back to port in Woods Hole they’ll have to unload much of the equipment and gear from the ship. Then, they’ll have to see just what the data will show them about the trip, beyond the basic measurements they could do on board. They’re hoping to learn more about the different eddies they sampled, and why there seemed to be big differences between them.

It makes sense to recap now what we’ve learned here on the blog. First, you met me, your guide. Then you met the organisms the scientists are studying: Ehux and the virus that infects it. You met the machines and techniques they’re using to find and gather samples: satellites and the CTD. You heard about our daily routines, the miracles of the kitchen, and the history of the ship. And finally you met a bunch of the scientists doing the work. But there’s a lot of things you didn’t hear about, scientists and crew you didn’t get to see, moments of discovery that went un-blogged.

Some of those things will find their way to you in the future, when the scientists process their work. Others simply aren’t bloggable – late nights playing Pictionary, the way the water moves around the boat like its traveling on the backs of elephants, or the look in Daniella’s eyes when someone says “whale.” Those are the parts of the adventure that don’t get written down.

My biggest piece of advice from this trip? Go find an adventure of your own. I highly recommend it.

Without any further sentiment, here are some of my favorite pictures of the trip. Thanks so much for traveling with us.

The ship we would call home (and never, ever call a boat) for the next 30 days.

Is this a lake, or the middle of the ocean?

Leo masterfully overseeing our work.

One of many sky pictures to come. Because the sky is about 50 percent of what you see here. Want to guess the other 50 percent?

 

Bree let me drive the ship. Don't worry, I didn't let the power go to my head. Yet.

Here we see the engineer, blending in superbly in his native environment after millennia of evolution.

Oh hey another sky picture. Would you guess this was taken after midnight?

Okay last sky picture, I promise. This was our last night on the ship, around 1am.

The science team! This time I didn't accidentally photobomb the picture.

Rose Eveleth About the Author: Rose Eveleth is a producer, designer, writer and animator based in Brooklyn. She's got a degree in ecology from U.C. San Diego, and a masters in journalism from NYU. Now, she makes sciencey stuff for places like The New York Times, Scientific American, Story Collider and OnEarth. Follow on Twitter @roseveleth.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.





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