July 13, 2003
Latitude: 60º 23.866' N
Longitude: 5º 18.900' E
Clear skies and calm seas
We are cruising up an inland waterway where the steep walls of the fjords are tamed a bit. The shores are dotted with small houses. We have passed a number of fish farms that are probably raising Atlantic salmon or sea trout. Aquaculture constitutes more than 50% of Norway's fish exports. Offshore commercial fishing has played a major role in the Norwegian economy for centuries. Until fairly recently fish stocks in Norwegian waters seemed almost limitless. The incoming warm waters of the Gulf Stream encourage plankton growth resulting is a greater food source for fish. Like other countries, Norway has had to face the reality of declining fish stocks.
We will continue along this inland waterway until we are just north of Florø at 62º N and 5º E. This is one of the most feared and unprotected points on the Norwegian coast because the waves are big and there is no place to hide. At this point we will head northwest to deploy our first sound source mooring. Our job while we are out here is twofold. 1. We are deploying moorings that house a sound source that will send signals to floating receivers called RAFOS floats in order to track the path of currents coming into the Norwegian Sea. 2. We are deploying Argo floats that drift 1500 meters below the waters surface collecting data on temperature, salinity, and density. This is part of an international effort to deploy 3000 Argo floats all over the world's oceans.