The next day, I awoke early, so got the whisperlite stoves going and soon we had hot water for cocoa, instant coffee and oatmeal – yummy. The rest of the morning went by quickly. We broke camp and then practiced calling MacOps (radio into headquarters). “MacOps, MacOps, MacOps – this is Happy Camper, do you copy?” The photo looks like I am searching the sky for an answer, but I am simply following directions from my instructor.
After fun with the UHF radio, we donned buckets and tried to find our instructor outside, to simulate searching for a person in a white out. I had seen this scenario in Herzog’s movie Encounters at the End of The World, but couldn’t imagine how completely turned around one can become. Fortunately, I had a skilled team member in the lead and he actually found the instructor.
The time went by very fast and soon enough we were headed back to town. I had a quick shower and then joined a tour of the pressure ridges. This is an area next to Scott Base where the pressure from tides and the transition of sea ice to land has caused the sea ice to uplift. It is spectacular; though I was tired from the past two days, I was glad I went. We walked along the ridges for about a kilometer, all of us snapping our cameras. Near the end of the walk, we came upon a female seal and her pup. The wildlife is very cute here.
The days at McMurdo have been very busy and full. I spend an inordinate amount of time simply keeping track of my gear. Between organizing gear, attending trainings and touring the area by foot, I have not had much spare time to go through photos and create a slide show. Tomorrow I fly out to the WAIS field camp, when my real work begins. I will also have a bit more time to process my photos. If my flight goes as scheduled, I will have time for one more post. Otherwise, I fly out at 6:15am, and will be out of range for all but plain text. My descriptions will have to suffice until I get back to the comforts of McMurdo around the new year.