Sierra 1 Trip Update Day 9 – Graham, Program Director
Today was a busy but fun day. As we where awoken to the sun (it’s kind of bright here), we had some breakfast of cinnamon rolls and fruit. This was the first morning where the students where given the duty to wake up a little earlier and get the day rolling prior to the staff waking up and helping out. Everyone did amazing! By the time the staff where woken, breakfast was almost done and the table was set. The whole crew was awake and helping out with cooking — it was amazing to see! After breakfast the first order of business was to learn about Plankton. Being the primary foundation of the food chain, though tiny, plankton are vital to ecosystem health.
We learned about the different major kinds of plankton and plan to do some plankton tows in order to find the different types and look at them under our microscope. When the lesson was done, we all prepared for departure to the Bitter End Yacht Club (BEYC). Around 9:30 a.m. we raised anchor and set sail for the North Sound. The wind was brisk today, 20-25 knots. As we close-hauled upwind, we did dive homework, played cards, and hydration games. Tacking, points of sail and rights of way were some of the extra lessons that we discussed and demonstrated as we headed north. When we tacked and headed into the channel, we decided to head a little bit above the channel so we would gain leeway as we pointed up wind. After we got through the channel, dropped our sails and picked up the mooring ball, we had our lunch of pasta salad and then headed to shore for the afternoon. Watersports, hikes, small boat sailing, shops and frozen (virgin) drinks awaited us upon arrival. The first thing many people did was go on the hike, while some opted to stay back and explore the shops or enjoy a beverage. When the rest of the folks got back from the hike with some of the Foxtrot program(who was also at the BEYC), some students took out Hobie Cats while others did watersports with Frazer. Around 5:00 p.m., most were tired – we found them watching the soccer game in the pub when we called them back to boats. Back on board it was time for dinner prep, showers, and chores until the food was ready at 6:30 p.m. By the time 7:30 p.m. rolled around, we were almost ready to head ashore: dinner was getting cleaned up and people were getting all dressed up, for our evening on land. We met Foxtrot ashore and headed to the pub to play some billiards, darts and table-soccer. We all enjoyed socializing and mingling! By the time we headed back to boats, to people were pretty tired, weary from a long day of excitement. Sleep came quickly, as we drifted off under another beautiful starlit sky!