For many, the fall season means cooling temperatures, leaves turning and all things pumpkin. But for the men and women of Air Station Kodiak, the fall is all about the cold, Cold Bay to be exact. Kodiak stood up a seasonal forward operating location in Cold Bay, Alaska, in advance of winter fisheries with one MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and rotating crews. A second helicopter and crew will remain at the ready in Kodiak to assist in any long-range or complex cases.
Inside the thick red hull of Coast Guard Cutter Healy, a multitude of crewmembers, scientists and support staff hustle to and fro, performing their various jobs in preparation for operations during Arctic Shield 2013. The 420-foot icebreaker reached its destination amidst the ice floes of the cold Arctic waters, and everyone is eager to begin deploying the five unique technologies aboard the ship that could have the ability to enhance oil detection and recovery capabilities in the Arctic.
The last MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew forward deployed to Cordova, Alaska, for the summer season returned to its home base of Kodiak closing out a season of lifesaving. Throughout the deployment, which started May 1, 2013, aircrews out of forward operating location Cordova flew on 26 cases, saved 11 and assisted 18.
Coast Guard Cutter SPAR is a sea-going buoy tender that sails the waters of the Aleutian Islands and Bering Sea. The patrols are long, the work is hard and the days are cold. Keeping the crew motivated, not to mention their stomach’s full, is Petty Officer 1st Class Brittany Smith.
From July 29 to Aug. 15, 2013, Coast Guard Cutter Healy, the Coast Guard’s largest ice breaker and research vessel deployed to the Arctic Ocean under Capt. John Reeves with 44 scientists aboard. Under the aegis of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Healy scientists probed the water column and ocean floor in order to establish a basic understanding of the Chukchi Sea ecosystem.
Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Bob Papp spent last week in Alaska, underscoring the importance of establishing and maintaining a range of Arctic partnerships. “We cannot do this alone,” said the Commandant. “It requires a collaborative network of domestic and international partners, drawing upon their cumulative authorities, capabilities and experience.”
As watchstsanders and scientists alike collaborate aboard Coast Guard Cutter Healy to collect vital scientific data, they are joined by artist Bob Selby. This week’s sketchbook takes you inside Healy’s nerve center and even lets you off the polar ice breaker to get core samples and to harvest the ice.
Crewmembers aboard Coast Guard Cutter Healy are currently supporting scientific research in the dynamic waters of the north on their Arctic West Summer 2013 deployment. So far you’ve seen what it takes to get underway, the ship’s routine and even the Board of Lies. For this edition of the sketchbook, we’re sharing the faces behind the mission.
Last week we shared the simple moments aboard Healy as crew and scientists alike settled into routine. This week “Artist’s sketchbook” continues with a peek into life in the ship’s engine control room and the deployment of “The Rosette.”
Last week we shared the first moments aboard Healy, including scientists preparing to board the ship and the crew navigating the ship as Healy pulled out of port. This week the ship is at a science station 335 miles north of the Arctic Circle where the wind chill stands at 19 and the crew is experiencing 20 percent ice coverage.