HomeUncategorized01-22-09: Mt. Erebus

Well – yesterday the world watched Obama become our President.  Down here in Antarctica, the galley screen was transformed into a huge TV so that workers could watch the event as they ate. Normally, the big wall screen is used for lectures and slide shows only.  I missed the actual swearing in – but did see Bush and Obama get into the car for the big drive. (Then I was out the door to do my OWN drive out to Willy Field!)

Luckily, the weather has changed and we are now experiencing some nice -6 F that is helping firm up the roads.  And also along with that LUCK, I was given a  “boondoggle” (fun name for a little excursion to get people away from working 24/7)  My boondoggle was a trip on a ski-doo up 1,400 feet of Mt. Erebus!

Of course one wears every piece of ECW gear you own for an outdoor trip in 20- 25 knot winds. I also had the coolest James Bond looking helmet that kept my cheeks from freezing off!  We rode double and I was the pax on the way UP – DRIVER on the way down!  (FYI, I can jump snow drifts! Well, I hit them and then flew?) From our view – we could looked down over the Erebus glacial tongue. If you remember- that is the entrance to the Ice Cave. Totally different look from above.   You could just make out the Williams Airfield.  AND…. we could see the American Tern (fuel ship) coming!  In front of it was the Oden – guiding it through the chopped up ice.  Further out – OPEN WATER!!!  Awesome!  Mt. Erebus was spewing a great plume just for our tour. We were one of the luckiest as most have had cloudy days or fog and couldn’t see anything.  (I’m sure the RIDE was still fun!)  I only had my helmet “face” lifted for about 30 minutes as we were resting and snapping up photos, but managed to get a little sunburn WITH sunscreen.  How did the first explorers do it?

Only 3 more cookie days before my departure.  The time is flying by.  No word yet (because you only get a day notice) of a trip to the Dry Valleys.

Time to head to work.


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