Total Run This Leg:
Total Average Speed: 5.62 Knots
Hours / Days This Leg: 32.3 Hours / 1.33 Days
Distance To Go This Leg: 1,915 Nautical Miles
Estimated Time Of Arrival: 3:00 p.m., Saturday, November 6, Cape Henlopen
Sea Buoy, at the mouth of the Delaware River.
Present Course: 353 Degrees Northerly
Winds: Northwest Airs
Seas: Rippled Surface
Swells: 4 Feet from the East-Northeast
Barometric Pressure: 1010 Millibars
Air Temperature: 80 Degrees
Sea Temperature: 81 Degrees
Visibility: 10 Miles
Skies: Partly Cloudy
Sea Floor: Ocean depths beneath the USS New Jersey at this point are
2,965 Meters, or 9,726 Feet
Transit: October 16 - 21 / Balboa Pier 14 - 15, Miraflores and Pedro Miguel
Locks, the Gaillard Cut, Gamboa, Lake Gatun, and the Gatun Locks, and Cristobal. USS
New Jersey's clearance into the Caribbean Sea / Atlantic Ocean was completed at 11:34
a.m., and her mark for the commencement of the Cristobal, Panama - Philadelphia, PA Third
Leg was passed at 11:42 a.m., Thursday, October 21.
Distance Of Second Leg: September 21 -
October 15 / Long Beach, CA to Balboa Anchorage, Panama: 2,948.7 Nautical Miles, the
longest leg of New Jersey's homecoming voyage.
Total Average Speed Second Leg: 5.18 Knots
Distance Of First Leg: September 12 - 21 / Bremerton, WA to Long Beach,
CA: 1,193.6 Nautical Miles from the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard to Long Beach, CA
Total Average Speed First Leg: 5.54 Knots
Position: The USS New Jersey is now passing
180 Nautical Miles off the Eastern coast of Nicaragua, called Costa de Miskitos.
Between the ship and the coastline, dotted and speckled with small islands, is Isla de San
Andres. This lengthy stretch of Nicaraguan coastal area is described as extremely
remote, inaccessible, and rarely visited by outsiders, but rewards those who do arrive
with stunningly beautiful beaches and off-shore cays.
Pacific, Atlantic, Caribbean Cruises ...
Tonight's sunset, another in a dazzling series since that
September 12 Bremerton departure, brings to mind great curiosity about the Jerseymen and
their evenings aboard the great Battleship, when they weren't zigzagging their way out of
harm's way, or headed to it, or even when they were.
They must have had time to appreciate the sea around them
in the course of their duties. They must have talked about their feelings to each
other about approaching assignments, about moving into New Jersey's bombline position, or
heading back to the states, or visiting another foreign port.
But those evenings underway, after dinner, when the seas
were helpful and the air warm and easy, what parts of the ship were their favorites? Where
would a young sailor stand or sit to spend a little time, maybe only seconds, maybe
minutes, watching the glorious sun set to the West? What did he think about?
He didn't have the luxury, probably, unless it was his
job, to have an up-to-the-minute ship's report on heading, assignment, mission, danger,
instructions, or threats. He was just doing his job, aboard the Battleship, during a
war or after one. How recent was the last letter he received from his mom, or dad,
or wife? Did he have them still? Or did he care?
The setting sun can call these kinds of thoughts in all
of us. But what did they call from within these young men at sea?
Since New Jersey's graceful departure Thursday morning
from Panama, the voyage has been powerfully cooperative. The journey Northward in
the Caribbean Sea has been smooth and steady. The weather has been delicious.
And the sunset tonight provocative.
The Jerseymen will hold dear their sunset time, and none
of us will ever know. Even the Sea Victory's sailors can be seen taking in such
time, when duty is suspended for a few moments, and the meaning of their profession at sea
is validated once again.
Still, in an effort to know and understand the lives, and
especially the thoughts, of these Jerseymen, as they were off the Philippine Sea waiting
for confrontation, or in the cold, bitter winter sea of Korea, or off-shore in Southeast
Asia ready to bring New Jersey's firepower to bear helping Marines, or just cruising for
thousands of miles in between, what did they feel and say to themselves then?
She was a great ship to watch the sea from and see
nightfall created. There are a thousand hideaways from which to steal a secret glance. And
a thousand more to harvest a memory, or send a secret thought homeward, to a family in
waiting, to a friend praying for his safety, his return, to a nation, grateful.
Sunsets at sea. There's something about them.
Submitted by Bob Wernet onboard the Sea Victory.