Today we are less than 24 hours away from seeing land. The excitement can be felt throughout the ship, there is a smile on almost everyone’s face. You can also see the exhaustion in the eyes of many, so hopefully we will all get some much needed rest soon. As we sail closer to Hawaii the air gets heavier and there is always the chance of a light rain. The distant clouds last night made for a very nice sunset.

Deckies were practicing their line handling skills this morning so they have necessary knowledge for coming into port. Others were seen painting the deck, an ongoing process that is important to the integrity of the vessel. Without a fresh coat of paint there is a chance that rust can form and cause structural issues. A couple deckies were also spotted taking salt water ballast soundings. This is so we can log how much salt water ballast we have on the ship.

Cadets salt water ballast sounding

Cadets Iverson and Horne taking a salt water ballast sounding.

Cadets MEOD sounding

Cadets Mullen, Nicolas, Vo and Soileau on an MEOD Sounding.

Engineers were seen out on deck as well today taking oil soundings of one of the fuel tanks. This is conducted daily as the fuel levels shift and the engineers draw fuel from different tanks throughout the ship.

Down in the classrooms cadets were busy with practical class work. Some were in a CPR/First Aid class, important because accidents can occur on board. Still others were learning about taking on ballast and why it is important for the stability of the ship.

Dr. Miller teaching deck cadets CPR

Dr. Miller teaching deck cadets CPR.

Dr. Miller with cadet


Fire drillAfter lunch today we had our weekly Fire and Emergency Drill. These are important so all hands know what to do and where to go in the unlikely event of an emergency. Followed by this there is an abandon ship drill, useful in the very unlikely event where we would need to abandon the vessel.

Cadet Sturgeon weighed in on our training cruise so far:  “No matter how hard the job is, cruise brings out persistence and determination. You come out more mature and gain skills and friends along the way.”

Being out on deck and watching the sun settle just over the horizon and knowing that there is not another soul for miles around is something that is truly memorable. Being out at night with no light pollution and seeing stars that you haven’t seen before is something I think everyone should have the chance to experience at least once in their lifetime. Having been out on the ocean for almost a month has changed my life and I think many of my shipmates feel the same way.


Established in 1929, California State University Maritime Academy is the only degree-granting maritime academy on the West Coast. Located in Vallejo, California, the campus serves nearly 1,000 students and offers undergraduate degrees preparing students for careers in engineering, transportation, international relations, business, and global logistics. The new oceanography degree program launched in the fall of 2020. Cal Maritime also offers a master’s degree in Transportation and Engineering Management, as well as a number of extended learning programs and courses.