Journal Entry  -  September 17, 1999  -  Day 6

Friday Morning Position Report
8:00 a.m., Pacific Daylight Time
Latitude: 39 Degrees, 12 Minutes North
Longitude: 124 Degrees, 41 Minutes West
Days Run: 77.5 Nautical Miles from last 12 hours report
Speed: 6.46 Knots (Average)

Total Run:  699 Nautical Miles from Puget Sound's Blake Island
Total Average Speed:  5.92 Knots
Hours From Departure:  118 Hours
Distance To Go This Leg:  483 Nautical Miles to Long Beach re-fueling
Estimated Time Of Arrival:  8:00 a.m., Tuesday, September 21
Wind:  North-Northwest at 25 Knots
Seas & Swells:  Combined at 12 Feet
Barometric Pressure:  1017 Millibars
Air Temperature:  56 Degrees
Visibility:  10 Miles
Skies:  Broken Overcast, patches of Blue Sky
Present Course:  147 Degrees, Capt. Ogaard has adjusted BB-62's course to conform to the more eastward coastline of California from Point Arena to San Francisco Bay and beyond to the Santa Barbara Channel, the entrance to the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, where the Sea Victory will take on more fuel for the longer voyage to Panama next week.
Sea Floor:  The depth of the ocean beneath us now is between 1,720 and 1,758 Fathoms, or 10,320 and 10,648 Feet.  Between New Jersey's position and the coastal Point Arena are the underwater geological formations identified as Navarro and Arena Canyons.  These readings are based on the charts Sea Victory uses throughout the journey, published in Washington, D.C. by the Department of Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Service, Coast Survey.

Position:  "The Big J," or as U.S. Marines on Vietnam's DMZ called her in 1968, "The New Jersey Hilton," is presently towing well, according to Captain Ogaard.  She is 47 Nautical Miles West-Northwest of California's Point Arena in Mendocino County.

The town of Fort Bragg is located just to the North of Pt. Arena, but it's not the same site as the better-known home of the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Water, Water Everywhere ...

As Hurricane Floyd became Tropical Storm Floyd and began moving back into the Atlantic off the coast of Maine, it left misery up and down the east coast, judging from California radio news reports monitored on the Sea Victory.

In our the Pacific Ocean position, there is also plenty of water, from horizon to horizon, but fortunately at this writing, it remains contained, and is offering USS New Jersey a comfortable following sea tow so far.

Sailors in the past on the New Jersey, or mariners anywhere sailing the Pacific, must have always been moved by this vast body of water's immensity.  The Pacific is the world's largest ocean, comprising 64-Million Square Miles with an average depth of 13,215 Feet.

In fact, the surface of the earth itself is mostly water.   Oceans or seas cover 70.8% of the earth's surface.  Ranked by size, these are the 10 largest:

  1 - Pacific Ocean, 64,000,000 Square Miles, average depth, 13, 215 Ft
  2 - Atlantic Ocean, 31,815,000 Square Miles, average depth, 12,880 Ft
  3 - Indian Ocean, 25,300,000 Square Miles, average depth, 13,002 Ft
  4 - Arctic Ocean, 5,440,200 Square Miles, average depth, 3,953 Ft
  5 - Mediterranean Sea, 1,145,100 Square Miles, average depth, 4,688 Ft
  6 - Caribbean Sea, 1,049,500 Square Miles, average depth, 8,685 Ft
  7 - South China Sea, 895,400 Square Miles, average depth, 5,419 Ft
  8 - Bering Sea, 884,900 Square Miles, average depth, 5,075 Ft
  9 - Gulf of Mexico, 615,000 Square Miles, average depth, 4,874 Ft
10 - Okhotsk Sea, 613,800 square miles, average depth, 2,749 Ft

These references were included in the book, "The Ocean Almanac" by Robert Hendrickson, 1984, Doubleday, New York, NY, which Sea Victory Second Mate Mike Poirier provided to us for review.  It is likely that USS New Jersey cruised through parts of all ten, with the possible exception of the Okhotsk Sea, bounding Russia inside the far western North Pacific.

To conclude our notes on hurricanes heading back to sea, it may be interesting to note the names we may hear before this journey has ended.   The National Hurricane Center, an agency of NOAA, referred to in our chart readings above, publishes a list of names it will use for each hurricane or tropical storm of the season, in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Names designated for any storms through the remainder of this season in the Atlantic following Floyd will be Gert, Harvey, Irene, Jose, Katrina, Lenny, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rita, Stan, Tammy, Vince and Wilma.

In the eastern Pacific, within New Jersey's general course of travel to Panama, the designated names for 1999 are: Adrian, Beatriz, Calvin, Dora, Eugene, Fernanda, Greg, Hilary, Irwin, Jova, Kenneth, Lidia, Max, Norma, Otis, Pilar, Ramon, Selma, Todd, Veronica, Wiley, Xina, York, and Zelda.

Submitted by Bob Wernet onboard the Sea Victory.


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Line Drawing of Big J

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