December 4: Rough seas and high winds
December 4, 2006
On board the RV Yuzhmorgeologiya
Offshore of King George Island, Antarctica
Boredom has set in and the team is anxious to get to the Chilean base in order to connect with the C-130. We sat in the same location all day, drifting slowing in circles. The Russian captain wouldn’t consider entering Marion Bay because of rough sea conditions and the accompanying high winds. Ten meters per second is considered the critical wind velocity. Higher wind speeds are too dangerous for launching the Zodiac. As the weather conditions improved in the evening, the Yuzhmorgeologiya was able to move into the mouth of Marion Bay and take advantage of the leeward side of the island.
Dr. Minkyu Park, the scientist in charge of this leg of the research, remained in continual radio contact with the Korean Base. Their Zodiac operators are very well trained and can cope with high winds and rough seas. As evening approached, the low front moved through our area, and they were able to bring on the second contingent of Korean researchers. Their Zodiac was loaded on the deck and they joined us for a night aboard the R.V. Yuzhmorgeologiya.