Day Four on the R/V Melville and I have learned so much. For the past four days the focus of Day Watch has been taking various core samples from the bottom of the ocean. The Kasten Core recovered about 2,000 years of sediment layers. A couple of the scientists pushed tags with dates and historical events into the core so we could visualize what was happening at the time the layer was formed. What an amazing experience!
Then the Piston Core was brought up, this time recovering layers that were set in place more than 12,000 years ago! It is humbling to think that the piece of mud you are holding is composed of bits and pieces of what brushed the feet and legs of the first humans to walk down the pacific coast; and the last of the saber-toothed tiges and mammoths that once called this place home.
Tonight we transition from day watch to night watch, and from geology to biology. I am eager to see what fascinating creatures are pulled up from the water column from five pm to five am! I only hope I can stay awake!