Geoff Sims @ UNSW
Home South Pole Diaries 2012/13 29th January, 2013


Tuesday, 29th January, 2013

McMurdo (John)

In a perfect world we'd currently be on a C17 flying to Christchurch. In a more realistic world with those minor imperfections that make life more interesting we'd be in a Hercules LC130. As it is, we're stuck in McMurdo for one more day.

Fortunately, it's an absolutely gorgeous day - bright blue skies with the temperature hovering around zero and no wind at all.

The "Chalet", the office block of the National Science Foundation, with Observation Hill in the background.

The view from the Chalet. Richard Byrd, the first man to fly over the South Pole, is immortalized in bronze, while in the distance the Southern Ocean is gradually melting its way through the ice sheet towards McMurdo as summer proceeds.

Taking advantage of the weather, an NSF helicopter heads out in pursuit of science.

Elsewhere on the station, signs on the external doors reflect the growing (and very welcome) social trend of ensuring the everyone can enjoy a healthy, smoke-free environment.

No smoking.

Smokers are of course catered for, with their own smoking cabins.

Note the concrete blocks and tie-downs. They do get blizzards here.

And it's all done with a good sense of humour.

Meanwhile, we're spending the morning in the Crary library, also known in some circles as the "Stuffed Penguin Library". Craig is closely monitoring HEAT/PLATO, which appears to be working superbly.

Craig, working hard.

Like a stone lion at the entrance to a fort, the penguin watches over the Crary library.

Fortunately our day won't be wasted, as we'll spend a good part of it cleaning, sorting, and returning our field camp gear. By the end of the day we should have earned a seat in at least an LC130.


Back to South Pole Diaries 2012/13