Location: St. Vincent

We all jumped out of bed a little earlier than normal today.

After a quick bowl of cereal with the sunrise, we prepped our day bags for a hike up one of St. Vincent’s active volcanoes. The hike was a lot shorter than the last two, but it’s safe to say there wasn’t a lack of sweat or sore legs. We clambered under the bamboo shoots and other jungle fauna for an hour and a half with nothing in sight but more “stairs.” These bamboo, dirt-filled terraces seemed to ascend for what seemed like an eternity as they cut up the mountain. That was until we reached the volcano’s crater. A dense layer of fog rolled over the landscape as the sun struggled to push through. Within minutes, we were left with a mesmerizing view of the volcano’s massive crater and inner dome. It was an amazing spot to unload our picnic baskets of Pringles, ham sandwiches, and partially filled Nalgene bottles, all while watching the steam rise from the crater’s enormous mouth.

When midday rolled around, we were all back aboard Ocean Star with laptops, notebooks, and pencils strewn about as if a tornado had passed over the deck. We squeezed as much study time in as possible for our oceanography midterm before we were headed into another class off seamanship and dinner. A few of us took our dinghy Irv out to relieve some pre-exam stress and explored a nearby British fort complete with mortars and cannons constructed in the late 1700s. Soon after we, all enjoyed the curry, rice, hash browns, and delicious fried plantains for dinner.

Tomorrow morning we’ll be raising sails and embarking on a daylong voyage to the island of St. Lucia.