The past month has seen Widdershins either high and dry getting fitted out for the coming voyage or tied firmly to the dock whilst last minute preparations are completed. Yesterday, however we finally cast off the lines and headed out into the blue! Just a short trip this time to make sure all systems are working, but it was definitely nice to finally put to sea! We spent last night anchored in a quite bay and got in a quick dive to try out all the dive gear that is cluttering the boat.
Now we are back in Tromso again getting last minute provisions and waiting for a weather window to hit the high seas! Looks like we might not get away until Monday due to a nasty weather system passing through, but then the sails will be unfurled and we will cast our worries to the wind. Meanwhile we plan to get a few more dives in around Tromso and start our biodiversity monitoring program using ReefLife surveys.
In between the various boat related jobs we have also been meeting the locals and learning exactly how Norwegians interact and subsist off the regional coastal environment. Yesterday Leonie was given a fantastic tour of Halvor’s Fisk (www.halvorsfisk.no) and learned all about the uniquely Norwegian process of converting dried fish into sumptuous dishes. All this will go into a book at the end of the trip looking at how people depend upon the sea, and also a cook book exploring local cuisine. On this stop we exited with a delicious recipe for Turfisk that will definitely be added to our repertoire of on-board rations.