Photo gallery Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4  Taylor Dome

Date:   December 8, 2006
Location:   Taylor Dome
Latitude:   77 degrees, 47 minutes South
Longitude:   158 degrees, 43 minutes East
Temperature:  −20°C (−4°F)
Wind Speed:   5 knots
Wind Chill:  −28°C (−18°F)
Elevation:  2,365 meters (7,759 feet)
Written by:  Joe
Meters of core drilled: 100

Notes on daily life

Today Edgar finished welding the first of the two spreader bars that will be needed to pull the sleds behind the tractors once we are under way.  Gordon, Andrei, Mike, and Dan tested the Siglin sled containing the ice core boxes to see if everything was secure enough to withstand the uneven terrain we will likely experience along the trail.  Everything seemed to work flawlessly.  Steve and Brian took the shallow radar out to the ice core site with the Pisten Bully, recording data along the way.  Dan B. continued to debug the computer code that runs his density-measuring instrument so that he can begin to field test the device.  Paul and Rick have been working together to make sure everyone is up to speed on safety protocols, work schedules, and also putting the final touches on the planning for the traverse.  Josh removed half of the flags for the runway used by the Hercs as there will not be any more flights here at Taylor Dome this season. This is a promising sign that we might soon leave our current home away from home.  A walk down the hard-packed runway (about a 2 mile round-trip journey) in a pair of bunny boots is a nice way to get a little afternoon exercise.  The evening was completed by a delicious flank steak dinner conjured up by Cathy.  Tofu is always available for those of us who are carnivorously challenged!

Date:   December 9, 2006
Location:   Taylor Dome
Latitude:   77 degrees, 47 minutes South
Longitude:   158 degrees, 43 minutes East
Temperature:  −15°C (5°F)
Wind Speed:   3 knots
Wind Chill:  −18°C (0°F)
Elevation:  2,365 meters (7,759 feet)
Written by:  Lora
Meters of core drilled: 108

What a warm day! I never thought I would be saying that when it was −15° C out.  The weather has been so cold that &min15° C really did feel warm today.  At first I thought I was going crazy, but then as I looked around camp I notice that everyone had their coats off while they were working.  We all thought that −15° C with no wind was a scorcher. 

Edgar finished the welding today and left on a Twin Otter flight in the afternoon.  We had two Twin Otter flights today, one in the morning and one in the late afternoon.  The first flight brought in some scientists for a project detecting crevasses.  Their science only took a day, so they arrived in the morning and left in the afternoon with Edgar.  We were sad to see Edgar go, but happy that our sleds and trains have the hardware built to move easily. 

The morning started with a crevasse radar lesson.  There is a crevasse detecting radar mounted 30 feet in front of the Pisten Bully. This radar is a piece of safety gear we use to warn us of unexpected crevasses.  Steve taught the class, giving everyone the basics of how radar works.  When the radar pulse reflects off of a crevasse it creates a parabola shape on the radar screen.  While we are moving, there is always someone watching the crevasse detecting radar.  If the radar shows a parabola shape, the person watching the radar yells stop to the driver.  Our route has already been chosen to avoid crevasses but the radar is a secondary precaution.  After the class we all got a chance to use the radar and watch the screen. Driving over a metal barrel that was buried was our final test. The metal barrel reflected similarly to a crevasse and we had to yell stop as soon as we saw it on the screen.

Andrei and Mike spent the day redesigning the kitchen.  They built new shelves and spaces to store our water canisters while traveling.  All the shelves have lips and straps to hold items in place.

Joe and I worked with my radar and took the weather reports at 7:00 am, 1:00 pm and 7:00pm.  The weather reports are used to calibrate weather models.  Brian, Paul, Steve and Josh ran some more radar lines with the deep and shallow radars.  Brian got some excellent data before the radar broke going over a big bump.  He is working on fixing it, again.  Dan B. is still working on his density logger.  Dan D. spent the day fixing things.  He fixed Steve’s radar power supply and built some new shelves in the Blue Room.

We received some great presents on the Twin Otter flight.  In the Cruise Box, a box that the pilots take special care of and give to the field camp, we received vegetables, fruit, mail, New York Times newspapers and two pairs of skis and poles.  We were very excited to receive the skis.  Right after dinner I went out to take the skis for a spin.  Even though it was the warmest day we have had, the plastic binding on the ski broke with my first kick.   The plastic was too brittle in the cold conditions.  I was sad to have broken one pair of the skis.  I ended up going for a jog/walk instead of a ski.  Tomorrow I will drill some new holes and try to fix the skis.