Tag Archives: Gaelin Rosenwaks

Explorers Club Flag


Gaelin Rosenwaks & Jeremy Mathis with EC Flag #118 in front of Prince Patrick Island, at 75.42 N


Both Fellows of the Explorers Club, Jeremy Mathis and I are honored to be carrying Explorers Club Flag #118 together on this expedition.  Flag #118 has been on many expeditions since its first expedition in Australia in 1946 including one to the summit of Mt Everest!  We are very excited to include our expedition in the great history of the Explorers Club and, as young explorers, to continue the great legacy of exploration that is embodied in the Club and the honor of carrying the Flag.



October 1- Flying to Dutch Harbor


Flying to Dutch Harbor is always an adventure. I have only flown out of Dutch once before so I kind of knew what I was getting into. A few things to worry about when flying into Dutch, the number one being getting your baggage and the next the sketchy landing with a cliff on one side and water on the other; apparently a vast improvement from what it was before. To address the first issue, when I got to the airport in Anchorage, I begged and pleaded with the woman at the counter to make sure my bags got on the plane. My two duffels were filled with everything I could need to work and live for the next 4 weeks aboard the Healy and without them, it was going to be a long month. I also knew that I was on the last flight in for the day, so this was my shot to get my gear before setting sail. Finally when I told them I was getting onto a ship, they put big “Must Ride” stickers on my bags…so I wasn’t crazy for worrying as they were well aware of the problem of bumped baggage. I was already carrying about 40 lbs of gear on me between my pelican case with cameras, hard drives and a backpack with cameras, my computer, etc…Being at sea is unlike anything else because if you don’t have something with you, well you won’t have it until you get back home. It makes keeping the weight of your gear down difficult.

After negotiating the ticket counter and my bags, telling them my weight and having my carry-ons weighed, it was time to anxiously wait for the flight with nervous anticipation of my bags making the flight. I was not buying the “Must Ride” sticker. The plane to Dutch is a small prop plane and they cram the seats in…the plane is old and rickety and uncomfortable, but I am on my way to Dutch. The captain comes on and informs us that all of the bags are on the plane, that’s a relief, but because we took all of the bags, we have to make some fuel stops, first in King Salmon and then in Cold Bay. Knowing that my bags are on the plane is a relief as now I know I have all of my gear, and I am always into seeing new places…although the idea of not taking enough fuel is not the best feeling in the world.

So with a brief fuel stop in King Salmon, the pilots decide we don’t need to stop in Cold Bay and we land safely in Dutch. The view from the plane is beautiful. Dutch Harbor is beautiful, a large harbor surrounded by green mountains. We got very lucky with the weather as it was a beautiful day whereas the day before, the wind was howling and it was miserable. Sure enough my bags made it on the plane as did everyone else’s including all of the science party’s bags from the earlier flight. Step Two down, all of my gear and I made it to Dutch!



Dutch Harbor


The Expedition…


In response to the imminent threat of climate change on the ocean, this expedition, the first National Science Foundation funded of its kind, will head to the Western Arctic Ocean to study ocean acidification. Human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels and changes in land use practices have led to an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide and uptake of carbon by the ocean. These increased carbon dioxide concentrations lead to a decrease in the average pH of the surface waters of the ocean, a process called ocean acidification. The purpose of this expedition is to directly address questions of how human-induced climate change is affecting ocean chemistry in the Western Arctic Ocean.

The cold waters of the high latitudes are particularly vulnerable to ocean acidification due to increased solubility of carbon dioxide at low temperatures and low carbonate ion concentrations due to mixing patterns. This increased uptake in carbon dioxide along with the loss of sea ice and high rates of primary productivity over the continental shelves lead to increased ocean acidification in the Arctic Ocean and marginal seas. The rapid rates of change facing the high latitudes may have profound impacts on many organisms, particularly calcifying organisms that form calcium carbonate shells and hence need calcium carbonate minerals such as aragonite and calcite. Because of the sensitivity of these high latitude ecosystems to ocean acidification and their accelerated rates of change compared to lower latitudes, they become a real-time laboratory for understanding the changes and impacts of climate change on organisms and their possible cascading effects on the foodweb.

This study will be the first comprehensive assessment of the impacts of physical and biogeochemical processes on carbonate mineral saturation states and ocean acidification in the western Arctic Ocean and provide fundamental data for the understanding of ocean carbon cycle dynamics in the Pacific sector of the Arctic Ocean.




Tune in Tonight…

Tonight, I will be appearing as a guest angler/scientist on an episode of National Geographic Channel’s series, “Fish Warrior.” In the U.S., the show premieres tonight, March 18th, at 8pm. Click the photo below for a link to the program’s website where you can view pictures and a preview:


It was a great expedition and I hope all can tune in!


Gulf Oil Spill Coverage

I spent last week down in Louisiana covering the disaster that has fallen upon our beautiful Gulf of Mexico for SunMedia in Canada.  It was a very difficult week. Observing the oil on the beaches and in the marsh was heartbreaking and speaking with local people who are pessimistic about the future was difficult.  I will have photo galleries and additional posts up soon.  Click on the thumbnails below to read the articles that I wrote for Sun Media.

Click the thumbnail to access the article:

To view images from Gaelin’s trip to the Gulf, visit:



August 23: Quite the Adventure…



No ocean going expedition is without its risks and I learned firsthand about this on August 23rd. I woke up not feeling great but with the change in environment, schedule and food, I didn’t think much of it. Plus I am young, fit and healthy…nothing could medically happen to me out here except maybe some kind of physical injury. But as the day progressed and I felt worse and worse, I found out that I could not have been more wrong as, by 8pm, I found myself being medevaced off of the ship.

In the early evening, it was determined that I needed to get off the ship and to a hospital. Fortunately, we were close to shore (approximately 30 miles- the closest I have ever been on an expedition) and a Coast Guard Helicopter was dispatched from New Orleans. Right around sunset, the chopper arrived, the swimmer was lowered and I was soaring in a basket over the Gulf of Mexico being lifted into the chopper. The ride took about an hour and we landed on the roof of the hospital where they began to administer care. It turned out that I had a major internal bleed from my stomach and had lost over one third of my blood by the time I had gotten there. I was very lucky to be in such close proximity to land. The crew of the NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown was incredible in how quickly they got me off of the ship and I am forever thankful for their swift action.

After a few nights in the hospital in New Orleans, I am back home recuperating. The docs say I should be back ready to go soon and this should not happen again. I am definitely bummed that I missed the rest of the expedition but hopefully will be able to join them again next year. Despite the seriousness of this situation, it has only increased my desire to get back out there and do more in my exploration of the ocean and the planet. Life is fragile but as my mantra has always been, “if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room…”

Heartfelt thanks to the crew of the NOAA Ship Ronald H. Brown, the science team of the Lophelia II cruise, the US Coast Guard (especially the crew of the helicopter from the CGAS New Orleans), and the docs and nurses at Tulane Medical Center.


In the basket about to be pulled into the helo

The Coast Guard Swimmer being hoisted back into the helo.


Inside the helo on the way to New Orleans…

(Thanks to everyone on the ship for the great pictures)


Global Ocean Fishing Adventures!

We have launched a new division of GOE Inc…check out our promotional video for a fishing series we are launching soon…in this promo, a monster 50+ pound chinook salmon caught and released in the waters of British Columbia…