Latest News
For Teachers
For Keiki (Kids)
About the Area
Photo Images
Video Images
Maps and Satellite Images
More Info

You are here: /main/research/NOWRAMP 2002/journals/TC Update 6/


Ship Logs

Updates from the Townsend Cromwell (9/20 - 9/21/02)
Midway Atoll
Posted by Stephani Holzwarth
Photography by Jim Watt

Masked Angelfish, male, Genicanthus personatus.Sept 20, 2002. Midway Atoll. Long, gorgeous day. We launched the SAFE boat at sunrise this morning, at the entrance to the main ship channel at Midway. In our small fast boat we buzzed past the Rapture, our sister research vessel, headed in to tie up at Midway. The Cromwell tied up as well and some of our ships crew got a much needed half a day off. Not the scientists though! We were plenty busy until almost sundown- swapping out another CREWS buoy, towing the outer barrier, and the fish and benthic divers revisiting sites that Ed and Bob and others (NOAA fisheries biologists) have been surveying since the early 1980s. Brian and I were on a quest to see rare and beautiful angelfish. We came across masked angels, which I always look at as long as possible, drinking in their perfect simple beauty. The girl fish are creamy white with a charcoal black mask and gold fins. The guy fish have a gold mask, and harems if they are lucky! We looked and looked for the elusive Japanese angel, and saw hundreds of Potters angels, which are similar, but not a one Japanese. The Potters are quite pretty as well and look to me like a bed of embers glowing dark red in smoky black, with blue flames along the trailing edges of their fins.

Japanese Angelfish, Centropyge interupta.After almost 12 hours on the water we ran the boat home to tie up next to the ship. I did the quick version of my nightly GIS data tasks so I could bike to the treehouse near Rusty Bucket beach for sunset. As much as I love the ship, it felt amazing to be free of it for an hour. I couldn't have been happier- riding a bicycle, no noise, no people, just me and a million colors in the sky and on the water. A fairy tern chick decided to sit next to me on the tree platform, so I enjoyed its quiet company for awhile, though it nipped at me when I got up to leave. :o)

Sept 21. Midway. In spite of however much fun anyone had on land, we all returned dutifully to the ship and all were bright-eyed and bushytailed by our morning sendoff. We finished 6 more tows, making that 10 for Midway. The fish and benthic teams surveyed near the entrance to the inner lagoon where Navy ships used to enter for a protected harbor. Another full day, and now we're headed to Kure Atoll, 60 miles to the northwest, at 178' longitude, which is a scant 2 degrees east of the dateline. We could cross over, and it would be tomorrow. ;o)

Fairy Tern.

<<Journals Home

Click here to ask question about the topic of this page!Ask About It!


Stephani Holzwarth
Stephani Holzwarth

Click here for video clips of towboarding.
Towboarding video clips

Home | News | About | Expeditions | Photos | Video | Maps
Discussions | Partners | Teachers | Keiki | More Info | Search
Contact Us | Privacy Policy
This site is hosted by the
Laboratory for Interactive Learning Technologies
at the University of Hawai`i