|The aurora borealis, seen from the Peildeck of Polarstern|
1) I stayed up with the rest of the scientists our last night at sea, watching the aurora borealis from the Peildeck.
2) The ship arrived in Tromsø, and I hugged my dear German colleagues goodbye.
3) I treated myself to my post-cruise ritual of a long walk, a long shower, and a salad.
4) I went back to my blog posts from sea and added photos (check them out if you haven't!).
5) I flew back up north to Longyearbyen, Svalbard!
Now, you were probably expecting me to head south, not north, but I insist the back-track was for a reason. Do you remember the larval traps I spent so much time building in March? If you remember, I shipped them to my German colleagues in preparation for a cruise - the very cruise that just happened. The samplers I built in March are now underwater on moorings in the Fram Strait, and I'll pick them up next year.
What I didn't tell you before is that I also made an agreement with Norwegian scientists to deploy larval traps on their moorings. The Norwegian Polar Institute maintains a series of oceanographic moorings north of Svalbard, and thanks to a particularly collaborative colleague, my samplers will be deployed there as well. It worked out perfectly that the Norwegian cruise is starting this week, right after I finished on Polarstern, so I was already in the area. I came up to Longyearbyen to prepare my samplers, load them onto the Norwegian ship, and meet with my colleagues before they set sail.
I'm glad to be back up north in Svalbard and looking forward to the next portion of my Arctic adventure!