I can almost not believe it – we have still not reached the bottom sediments in Nong Thale Pron. This lake is really a jackpot! Today we only wanted to obtain the core segments we did not manage to get yesterday. Ludvig, Nut and I went out on the larger zodiac, while Christophe was out with Sheri and Moo on the smaller boat to take water samples, and Nerys was filming Koy who sampled diatoms. Just for the fun of it, I wanted to see if we possibly could get a little bit deeper into the sediment than we had done yesterday. The bottom sediments at 9.00 m were still algae gyttjas and I guessed that there could be at least one meter more. I was right – it only needed some stronger muscles to push the corer down to 10 m depth, then to 11 m depth, and to 12 m. Then the sediment became more compact. With a smaller diameter corer we could possibly get even deeper.
While we paddled ashore to get the smaller corer, dark rain clouds were coming closer and closer. Although it is generally very very hot during the day, in the afternoon and especially in the evening heavy rain showers are quite frequent. The rain clouds seemed to pass us, we paddled out on the lake again and were confident that we now finally could get the last core up. We had no idea how wrong we were!
Just when we had pushed the corer down to 12.50 m, the sky opened up and it rained and rained and rained. Everything became soaking wet, we, our boat, our backpacks. The rain was so dense and so strong that we could hardly see further than 5 m. But it disappeared as quick as it had arrived and after a few minutes the sun was up on the sky again. We pulled up our corer, got another nice sediment sequence, but decided to get ashore because it was already late in the afternoon and because we were completely wet. In addition to really nice sediments, we can now also add monsoon rain to our Thailand fieldwork experience.
Tomorrow we will have to get back to Nong Thale Pron again to core more missing sediment sequences. It would not be a surprise at all if we would reach even further down. This spot has proven to be one of our lucky lakes – who would have thought that we could get such a spectacular sediment sequence at this location.