We were warned about the rain, but we did not expect to like it as much as we did. I looked back on the group bicycling behind me in the heavy drizzle and saw smiles. Dr. Jeff said that the harder it rained, the more he smiled. Beaming guests at the midway point told me they were embracing nature and living in the moment. The five miles were wet but fun.

Meanwhile, naturalist Frankie Wilton was leading the “Long and Steep Hike” up Petersburg Mountain. Some stretches have logs with notches cut into them as steps to assist climbing. Nine miles later, dirty and damp, happy hikers emerged from the forest to return to the ship.

Cocktail hour was entertaining with the photos of plankton that the undersea specialists had collected. The golden-colored sea flea, copepods, and isopods amazed the crowd.