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  U. S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 01-154

Cruise Report - Asterias 2


1. Bottom samples and photographs

2. River water studies for R. H. Meade

3. Foram samples for Arthur Wegweiser (South to New Jersey)


Inshore waters and rivers from Canadian border to Cape Henry, Virginia




0900 I July - 1620 17 July 1964 (N. of Woods Hole) 
1030 20 July - 1350 9 August 1964 (S of Woods Hole)
Total: 38 days.



James Trumbull (in charge) entire cruise
Arthur Wegweiser - 1 - 17 July
Vjilliam Moehl - 20-July-9 August
Robert Meade - 7 - 12 July


Visitors aboard for the day:

Arthur Jokela, MIT Graduate Student - 2 July
John Cotton, USGS/Boston - 2 July
Wilbur Palmquist, USGS/Boston - 2 July
Charles Wing, MIT Graduate Student - 3 July


  • Smith-McIntyre bottom sampler (supplied by BCF), with attached bottom camera (supplied by WHOI)

  • Miniature Van Veen and Dietz bottom samplers

  • Hand-powered BT winch to handle small tools

  • BTs and Frautschey and Coke-bottle water samplers

  • Salinometers (Industrial Instruments Inc. Solu-Bridge). Forel color tubes

  • 20-cm Secchi disc, mercury thermometers

  • Portable pH meter

  • Standard 35-mm cameras to photograph sediment surface on deck.


Standard bottom stations: 1896-2011 (except 1916), total 115; water stations (not including any of above stations): 18; Wegweiser stations (not including any of above stations): 36, Note: Water and Wegweiser stations were not given numbers in the consecutive 4-digit series. Suspended sediment sample (Penobscot River): No. 1916. Note: Station numbers 2012-2024 inclusive have not been used at this time. GOSNOLD August cruise started 2025.


The first leg of the cruise, 1-17 July, north of Woods Hole, resulted in 35 standard stations, 31 more Wegweiser stations, and short-term hydrologic surveys in 2 rivers, the Penobscot and Kennebec. Standard bottom stations averaged only 2 per day, but of 13 days in Maine waters, 10~ were in thick fog. Ten planned stations east of Schoodic Point were abandoned because of the fog and defective radar. Five of them are necessary to the project and will be made by outboard boat.

The second leg, 20 July - 9 August, 21 days, south of Woods Hole, resulted in 80 standard stations, 5 Wegweiser stations, and short-term hydrologic work in 1 river, the Raritan. Four days were lost mostly to weather but partly to crew fatigue and the needs of the boat. The average was 4 standard stations per day. Note that the GOSNOLD, with 5 times the men and 8 or 9 times the expense, makes only 3 times the stations per day when working steadily in shallow water.

This cruise has completed the Emery project's grid of bottom stations for all inshore waters from Schoodic Point, Maine) to Cape Henry, Virginia.


A very large part of the success of this cruise is due directly to the top-notch excellence in all respects of the skipper, Arthur D. Colburn, Jr. Except for her toy radar set, which is just slightly better than nothing, ASTERIAS is an excellent boat for this type of work. Working conditions are marginal in force 4, and she should be in harbor by force 5. But that is a function of her size, and she is sound, capable, and dependable. She should not be used where good harbors are much over 100 miles apart simply because of crew fatigue and lack of ability to stay at sea if the WfL1CilCTT blows up. Her radar set simply must be replaced ($3-4,000). If a good new radar set has a longer life than ASTERIAS remaining useful life, it can easily be reinstalled on her replacement.

Asterias has plenty of cargo space for an operation of this type and length. But total persons aboard should always be limited to three, except for very short periods. The scientific gear worked-very well. The Smith-McIntyre sampler worked splendidly and gave almost no trouble. This project should have one; the BCF people say they are readily available. The bottom camera that Russ Paul installed on the sampler worked well, though it wanted considerable tinkering. Turbid water ruined many bottom photos, though. The trick of routinely taking deck photos of the undisturbed sediment surface that this sampler usually gets seems to work very well, though the results are not available at this writing.

The combination of a hand-powered BT winch borrowed from Odie Hunt, a BT, and Emery's plastic water bottle for bottom water samples, with the BT and water bottle used on the same drop, works very well.

The project's portable pH meter will work out on shipboard, but at this writing it needs repairs.

Art Wegweiser and Bill Moehl both turned out to be willing, efficient, and capable, as well as good cooks and good shipmates.


1 July - U/W WHOI 0900, transited Cape Cod Canal, made 2 standard stations) docked Chelsea, Mass., 1900. Thunder squall in p.m., weather good Otherwise.

2 July - U/W 0735 with 3 day visitors, made 4 standard stations, transited Annisquam Canal, docked Newburyport, Mass., 1530. Weather good.

3 July - Thick fog all day delayed departure to 1120. One day visitor. No stations. Anchored Boothbay Harbor, ME, 2400.

4 July - Thick fog all day prevented sailing. Made 1 station at anchor.

5 July - U/W 0415, anchored Northeast: Harbor, ME 1750. Radar died 0500. Thick fog all day except 2 hours mid-afternoon. Made no stations in order to get down East to take advantage of any good weather in difficult country east of Schoodic Point.

6 July - Thick fog all day prevented sailing. Moved to Southwest Harbor for Radar repairs.

7 July - U/W 0445 in thick fog. Lost radar and echo-sounder 0510, docked for repairs. Southwest Harbor 0600. Will be no radar until transformer received from New York. Bob Meade joined 1500. U/W 1600 to Soames Sound for 1 standard station and 1 Wegweiser station. Anchored 2030 Northeast Harbor in thick fog.

8 July - Thick fog in a.m. cleared slightly and U/W 1000. Two standard stations in Frenchman Bay. Weather locally clear in Upper Bay. Anchored 1600 Northeast Harbor in thick fog.

9 July - Thick fog cleared slightly at 1200, U/W to Southwest Harbor to inquire for radar part - negative. Continued to Blue Hill Bay where 2 standard and 2 Wegweiser stations in locally clear weather. Anchored 1000 Pretty Marsh Harbor.

10 July - U/W 0540, thick fog outside. Through Deer Isle Thoroughfare to Penobscot Bay. Light rain and fog but workable visibility all day. Made 4 standard stations and anchored Camden 1412 to inquire for radar part - negative. U/W 1720, made 1 standard and 1 Wegweiser station, anchored Belfast 2020.

11 July - U/W 0445, made 1 Wegweiser station, anchored 0715 Bucks Harbor to meet repairman. Radar repaired and also underwater camera housing completely overhauled, and U/W 1155. Made 3 standard stations, 6 Wegweiser stations, and numerous water stations for Meade in Penobscot Bay and Penobscot River. Water stations included temperature, salinity, and water samples from numerous depths. Bright clear day. Anchored 1940 at Winterport on Penobscot River. Meade made hourly vertical temperature and salinity profiles all night.

12 July - Took 4-gallon suspended sediment sample 0720. Set Meade ashore 0745, U/W 0800 through Eggemoggin Reach and anchored Northeast Harbor 1645. Made 2 standard stations. In thick fog all day. Radar used all day but no good except on -?i-mile scale. This return eastward is final chance to get the clear weather necessary for getting east of Schoodic Point to the 10 stations planned there.

13 July - Thick fog and adverse weather forecast force abandoning attempts to get to 10 planned stations east of Schoodic Point. U/W 0715 westward, made 3 standard and 3 Wegweiser stations, anchored 2015 in Sheepscot River. Weather cleared to usable visibility 1400.

14 July - U/W 0645, anchored 0755, Nubble Bay, to await slack water. U/W 1035 through Sasanoa River to Kennebec River and up and back down same, anchoring Phippsburg near mouth of Kennebec 1700. Light fog and rain much of day. Made 2 standard stations, 6 Wegweiser stations, 6 water stations.

15 July - U/W 0820, Radar died in thick fog 0950, anchored Jewell Island, (Casco Bay), 2030. Thick fog ail morning, clear in afternoon. Made 5 standard stations, 4 Wegweiser stations.

16 July - U/H 0810, made 2 standard stations, 5 Wegweiser stations, and anchored 0200 on 17th at Provincetown, Mass. Clear all day.

17 July - U/W 0705, made 2 standard stations, transited Cape Cod Canal, docked WHOI 1620.

18-19 July - Docked at .WHOI.

20 July - U/W from WHOI 1030, made 2 Wegweiser and 5 standard stations, in Narragansett Bay, and anchored Dutch Island Harbor 1940. 

21 July - Thick fog all day. U/W 1015, 1 Wegweiser station, anchored Point Judith Harbor of Refuge 1210. At anchor in thick fog all afternoon. Radar usable on 1/2-mile scale.

22 July - U/W 0645 in fog, cleared in late morning. Made 5 standard stations off Rhode Island coast, in Fishers Island and Long Island Sounds, and Thames River. Anchored 1850 Hamburg Cove, Connecticut River.

23 July - U/W 0615, made 8 standard stations in Conn. River and Long Island Sound, anchored Eaton's Neck Harbor, L.I., 2040. Good weather all day.

24 July - U/W 0720, made 1 Wegweiser and 2 standard stations in Long Island Sound where strong NE winds, high seas, and marginal operating conditions. Down East River where stopped at Battery for charts, and up Hudson River where 1 standard station and docked Yonkers, N.Y., 1620.

25 July - Strong NE winds all day, all hands very tired, boat needs servicing. Laid over all day at Yonkers.

26 July - U/W 0620. Down Hudson River, across Raritan Bay, up and down Raritan River, across Raritan Bay, and anchored at Atlantic Highlands, N.J., 1814. 6 standard stations, 13 water stations, 1 Wegweiser station.

27 July - U/W 0420, made 9 standard stations down New Jersey coast, anchored Cape May, N.J., 2150. Good weather all day.

28 July - Thick fog and ship needs servicing. All day in port.

29 July - Moved to dock 0740 to install radio crystals for Wilmington and Norfolk U/W 0925, made 6 standard stations in Delaware Bay, anchored 1925 Nantuxent Cove (upper Delaware Bay). Fog all morning. Severe windstorm during night.

30 July - U/W 0600, 3 standard stations in Delaware Bay and River, transited C & D Canal, 4 standard stations in Chesapeake Bay, docked Annapolis 1935. Weather excellent.

31 July - U/W 1055 after servicing boat and buying additional scientific supplies. 5 standard stations in Bay, 1 in lower Potomac River. Anchored Smith Creek (Potomac River) 2030. Weather excellent.

1 August - U/W 0705, made 5 stations, including 1 in lower Rappahannock River, and anchored Fishing Bay 1805. Weather excellent.

2 August - U/W 0605, made 6 stations including lower York and James Rivers,
docked Little Creek, VA, 1810. Weather cloudy and windy.

3 August - U/W 0225 for outside run up the coast. Made 6 stations by 1255, but NE winds rising prevented use of large sampler on 1105 station and required abandoning station operations after 1 p.m. Produced speed in force 5 winds and high seas, made about: one knot all night, and arrived off Ocean City, Maryland 0500 and docked there 0615 on 4 August. The two planned stations missed were turned over to GOSNOLD by radio for her to do.

4 August - Weather hold in Ocean City ail day.

5 August - U/W 0740, seas calming and clearing to sunny, made 3 standard stations off Maryland and Delaware, and made outside run up New Jersey coast, anchoring Atlantic Highlands, N.J., 0350 on 6th.

6 August - Anchored Atlantic Highlands all day cleaning and servicing ship.

7 August - Raising anchor 0430 when thick fog shut in. U/W 0750 to south side Long Island. Made 3 stations. High winds and seas required abandoning planned 4th station. Transited New York Harbor and East River, anchored Manhasset Bay, Long Island Sound, 2100.

8 August - U/W 0615, transited Long Island Sound, made 3 stations Gardiners Bay and Block Island Sound, and anchored Block Island Salt Harbor 1945.

9 August: - U/W 0715, made 1 station, docked W.H.O.I. 1350.


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