I couldn't resist borrowing the words from a John Denver song. I will be leaving on a jet plane, specifically a C-17. I was supposed to leave on Friday, February 15, but because of mechanical problems our flight was cancelled. It didn’t look like I would leave until the 18th at the earliest. Fortunately, space opened up on the Sunday flight, so I take off tomorrow afternoon with only a two day delay.
Since my last post, the supply ship and the icebreaker have left. The open water has expanded, and winter, or at least fall, has returned. It is getting progressively colder, and we’ve been receiving snow, although it doesn't seem to accumulate.
|The Ocean Giant leaving McMurdo Station at 2:30 am.|
I transitioned back to days earlier this week as my last official day was Tuesday. It’s taken four days, but I’m now sleeping through the night and feeling more rested each day. I enjoyed working nights with the slower pace, the lighting was amazing, and we had a good crew. I feel it added to my overall McMurdo experience.
|Lots of open water with Mt. Discovery in the background.|
|It was novel hearing the waves splash on the shoreline.|
Over the past couple of days I’ve ventured out to take a few more pictures, some of which I will include below. I feel like I’ve gotten “the full meal deal” here on the Ice. I’m glad I got the opportunity to experience a place like no other on Earth.
|The cross at Hut Point with lots of open water.|
|A view looking towards Erebus Bay from Hut Point.|
But it’s time to move on. I’m going to meet my good friends John and Joan Henshaw in Sydney, Australia where we will spend five nights before boarding a cruise ship and sail around New Zealand. Afterwards, we’ll spend three nights in Melbourne with friends they met on a cruise last year. John and Joan will fly back to the Bay Area on March 11 and I will return to Christchurch for a few more days before flying home on March 17.
|Hut Point with the Royal Society in the background.|
I will do one last post after I get home to recognize some of the people I’ve met along the way and to share some parting thoughts. But I’ll close for now by saying it’s been an incredible ride, or should I say drive.
|A friend I met at Hut Point.|