The R/V Western Crest, a oil exploration vessel owned and operated by the Western Geophysical company. I worked as an Able Bodied Seaman (AB) for a two week stint off the coast of southern California, A few months later, I was asked by the company to sign on as an AB again to allow the boat to leave San Pedro and crew the boat back to Galveston , Texas. The Coast Guard required a minimum crew of two AB's to allow the vessel to leave for the intercoastal voyage.
There were five of us on board for the trip. The skipper, Dick Gannon, the engineer who doubled as the cook, another AB and one of the seismic crew . Dick Gannon is the only name I remember now. We later met again in back in California and he introduced me to the fun of land sailing on the desert
On board the boat was enough food for 20 people for 20 days and it was all passenger ship grade. On our way south to the Panama Canal we exchanged some of our food for fresh shrimp and lobster from a fishing boat in Mexican waters. The cook/engineer was an old "coon ass" from Louisiana and he knew how to cook! We altered between gourmet steaks, lobster , shrimp and then shrimp or lobster salads.
After we transited the canal we hit extremely heavy weather in the Gulf of Mexico. We had to install the special steel plates over the wheel house windows to keep the sea's from breaking through. We made it to the anchorage outside Galveston and anchored to wait for clearance of customs. The next morning the anchor windless refused to work and pull up the anchor. We wound up cutting the anchor chain using a grinder to get free of the anchor.
Some time later I worked for Western Geophysical again. This time not as a crew member ,but as part of the seismic recording crew. The R/V Seascope was a former Navy Ocean Mine Sweeper and well suited for seismic work. All of the exploration was off the Los Angeles coast. It was during this time that I became familiar with digital electronics and was the catalyst for me to get up to speed on that part of electronic technology. This was my last time to go to sea and I have since worked in the electronics and microprocessor environment.
The photos below are of the recording room of the R/V Seascope. We had a great crew and all worked hard. I could write a book about the exploits of that time. I will always wonder where all of those guys wound up.