I know there are long delays between posts. It seems I have little time for anything but eating, sleeping and working. The first two plus weeks I worked 6 9-hour days, with Sundays off. But on Monday, November 5th I started a new schedule. I’m now working 5 11-hour days with Fridays and Sundays off. Even though the work days are longer, it’s nice to have two days off each week. I’ll try to be a little more regular with my posts.
Just a note about the times. As you can see, we use the 24 hour format. In order to get used to it I’ve changed my phone and my Fitbit (which I use as my watch) to that format. It’s taking a while to get used to the change. Afternoons seems to be the hardest for me.
|Delta Gale at Phoenix Airfield.|
Before each shift, each vehicle is inspected before being put into service. The vehicles are serviced based on the number of hours instead of miles. Many of the vehicles are plugged in when not in use to keep the engines warm. The vehicles are exposed to the elements all year round. It’s a tough life for vehicles here on the Ice. My car doesn’t realize how good it has it sitting in the garage.
|My friend Shuttle Bill with the Kress.|
Besides driving, each person in Shuttles takes a turn at dispatching. It can get pretty hectic taking phones calls for rides and vehicle requests, monitoring two channels on the radio system, updating the vehicle status and aircraft status boards and numerous other tasks. There are a lot of moving pieces and I’m impressed with the seasoned folks who can juggles all these tasks with ease. I’m still working to get there.
I’m including a few pictures from a recent hike. In a couple of months I’ll take some photos of the same area once the ice has melted. Right now there are Weddell seals laying on the ice in front of Ross Island giving birth to their pups. Penguins probably won’t show up for another month or so, if at all. I hope to see both the Emperor and Adelie penguins, so stay tuned. A few people have seen skuas, a gull like bird. They are bigger than the sea gulls we see in the States but similar in they are both scavengers.
|The Ross Island coast line to the west of McMurdo Station.|
- It’s continuously light until the next sunset which will be February 20, 2019.
- A couple of new weather terms I’ve not heard before. Today our weather was “gloomy” and there are a couple of frontal systems “conspiring together” as they head towards McMurdo. Actually, very descriptive terms.
- There are currently 850 people at McMurdo Station.
- I posted a link to the Nova series on McMurdo Station. They are here right now filming. It will give you additional information on life at McMurdo and some of the ongoing research.
|The view of the Royal Society mountain range from the office and my dorm.|