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The James Clark Ross is back from the communications black hole that is anywhere above about 76º North.  All the updates that I wrote whilst out of satellite range can be found in the archive and these include the pictures that I was unable to post at the time.  In addition I have added a new section to the Polar Bear page with a selection of images that are not in the Daily Updates.  Happy reading and viewing of the pictures.

The comms satellite started to appear on Sunday but the signal quality was very poor and there were only a few limited things that could be carried across it.   On Monday there was a slight improvement but it was only this morning that things started to look up,  pardon the pun,  and with a request to the provider to increase the signal from the satellite the system locked on this morning and has been busy synchronising with a lot of data being transferred. 

This picture was taken last night and was the cause of a loss of the link.  With the satellite,  at the time,  being less than 1º above the horizon the signal was very prone to atmospherics and this cloud was enough to scatter the signal and break the link.

Yesterday also saw this chap arrive on board.  I am not sure why it decided to land on what must be one of the more difficult surfaces,  being curved and prone to moving.  When the ship stopped to carry out some science it hopped of to an adjacent flat space,  which had to be much more comfortable.  It had very long feet,  someone remarked that the looked like skiis!  In the early hours of this morning it was chased off by the seagulls,  who have done nothing but squabble and make a terrible mess all over the ship.

Wednesday has been a mixed weather day,  with some light drizzle this morning and fog this afternoon.  By early evening the fog had lifted and the southern tip of Svalbard,  Sørkapp Land,  became visible and as I write I am enjoying the view of the glaciers from my cabin window.

There she blows!  Throughout the day there have been numerous whale and dolphin sightings and the birds seem to be doing a lot of feeding on the surface of the water too.   I spotted a minke whale this morning when I first stepped on to the Bridge and it was only a few metres off the bow.  This afternoon there have been a lot of fin whales and the picture above is also of fins,  as best I can tell,  but they have been keeping their distance.  Not sure how many are out there just now but there have been a lot of blows sighted in several directions.

The science work continues to go well and the next science station is going to be a brief one as the water depth is less than 50m.

All being well the Dartcom satellite image,  the Navmet screenshot and the Daily Menu will be back today.

Previous updates from this trip

Noon Position Report  

Latitude: 76° 15 N
Longitude: 19° 36 E
Bearing: 157 °T, 130 Nm from Longyearbyen
Cruise Number: JR16006
Distance Travelled: 201
Total Distance Travelled: 1448
Steam Time: 17.3
Total Steam Time: 167.3
Average Speed: 11.6
Total Average Speed: 8.9
Wind: Direction NNE, Force 3
Sea State: Calm
Air Temp: 6.5 °C Sea Temp: 8 °C
Pressure: 1009.2 Tendency (3hrs): Steady


Mike Gloistein
gm0hcq @ gm0hcq.com