Monday, May 19, 2014

Beaufort Zero

Beaufort Zero during our 2013 expedition to Dongsha. The
ocean surface is like a mirror, the only ripple from the wake
of our boat. Dongsha Island is in the background.
Here we go. Our expedition to Dongsha is finally here. We are in Taipei for next two days meeting with our collaborators at Academia Sinica, and then on to Dongsha on Thursday. For the past few days (including a long plane ride), I have been working on a presentation for our collaborators - based on some of our initial data from our first expedition to Dongsha last year. Looking through pictures from last year reminded me how lucky we were to arrive in 2013 at a time perfect for fieldwork - Beaufort zero.

Stuck on-island under Beaufort five during
2013 expedition.
The Beaufort Scale describes the state of the sea in terms of wind and waves - twelve is a hurricane and zero is like a bathtub. When we arrived at Dongsha in June 2013, four days straight were Beaufort zero. That was a very rare treat indeed, and we got accomplished tons.

Of course, it couldn't last forever. On the fifth day, the tables turned and we hit Beaufort five. No going out in a small boat and conditions like that. The sixth day too. And the seventh. On the eleventh day, we finally got back out on the water.

So here's to a good start to our 2014 expedition, hoping for many days of Beaufort zero!

(from a hotel in the Tokyo airport - I missed my flight to Taipei!)
- Tom DeCarlo
Joint Program in Oceanography
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

1 comment:

  1. Here's to Beaufort Zero! See you on Dongsha in a few days...