A visit from friends

August 2, 2013

This morning we got a surprise visit from another research vessel. Schmidt Ocean Institute’s (SOI) R/V Falkor left San Francisco yesterday and is on its way to Vancouver Island, where it will take on a new team of scientists to work in waters off the Canadian coast. The Falkor is in its first full year of oceanographic research cruises. Some of the members of MBARI’s science team have had the opportunity to sail with SOI on the Falkor and their former ship, the R/V Lone Ranger. A few of their crew embarked on their skiff, the Atreyu, to take a tour of the Western Flyer. On their short visit, they met our crew and pilots and in the control room watched the ROV Doc Ricketts as it collected push cores at a gas vent site in Eel Canyon.

R/V Falkor

R/V Falkor and its skiff Atreyu as stopped by for a visit.

The Falkor crew was kind enough to give a few of us a ride over to the Falkor for a tour.

First Engineer Lance Wardle

First Engineer Lance Wardle was very excited to see the engine room of the R/V Falkor, especially the shaft generators.


Captain Bernd Buchner of the R/V Falkor outside the bridge with the Western Flyer in the background.

Captain Bernd Buchner of the R/V Falkor outside the bridge with the Western Flyer in the background.


R/V Western Flyer and R/V Falkor

The Western Flyer and Falkor sit side by side in the Northern California fog. Photo by Nathan Cunningham © Schmidt Ocean Institute

It was great to visit with our friends, but of course, this was just a quick diversion from our goals today. We conducted two ROV dives at gas vent sites in Eel Canyon. We collected cores and gas samples at two gas vents. We are going to do much of the same tomorrow at different vent sites. Stayed tuned…

— Susan von Thun