After the "Raccophoon"- Pictured is a baby raccoon dog, much less threatening than the storm of its namesake.
Last week Super Typhoon Neoguri struck the island of Okinawa and passed over the rest of the Japanese mainland. The Super Typhoon also forced the JOIDES to WOW (wait on weather) for almost a week. Normally WOW is a great word, meaning something stupendous and impressive. In this case, WOWing is not a response to something great, good, or grand. However, when looking at the strength of Neoguri (which means raccoon dog in Korean), sailing 146 nautical miles to the east was a no-brainer. After moving to our WOW site, and despite being over 600 miles from the center of the storm, we experienced swells up to 30 feet for several days straight. Even though we had some fun with the “Raccophoon” or “Tycoon” names, the storm was certainly no joke. The swells we experienced were similar to those earlier in the expedition during the tropical storm, but with much less wind and waves (waves are essentially whitecaps). Despite the lost operational time, we are now back on site U1438 and coring is underway yet again, with the hope that we go the rest of the expedition “Raccophoon-free.”