Katie Joy, Recon Team, 14th January 2013, Szabo Bluff
Guess what – we have moved and are currently enjoying a nice glass of red wine back in McMurdo. We are sitting in comfy chairs with cushions, and have had showers and washed our hair. No only kidding. We are still sitting in the field at Szabo Bluff in the Transantarctic Mountains. We have been in the tent 8 days now as the Twin Otter plane still has not had good enough weather to come and retrieve us. Still not as bad as the Antarctic explorers of 100 years or so ago who often had to wait a couple of years for the weather to be good enough for the boat to return them to sunnier climates… Always look on the bright side of life. The weather has been seriously odd – all day yesterday the clouds were thick and winds were really high and blowing snow (see photo), and we only had one to two mile visibility. Sometime in the night the winds just dropped completely and an eerie silence took over, but clouds still cover the sky meaning that we have little surface definition. This means it is too dangerous for the plane to come out, or for us to get out and try and do a bit more meteorite hunting. Even walking around outside is tricky as you can’t see shadows properly, and so tend to not see quite steep slopes on the snow drifts that are now lying between the tents – a few times now I have been strolling around only to suddenly find myself sliding down a slope on my rear end wondering where the ground went. Ah well.
We have had some moments of good weather to be able to clear up camp a bit, and get organised for the move whenever it might take place… hum… Even Priscilla the penguin joined in helping us empty some of the food boxes (which mainly involved her eating as much as she could to help lighten the load…). We are now out of chicken patties much to Priscilla’s disgust, and Tomoko and I only have one more can of Pringles left, and John and Joe are reaching critically low cookie levels – I think the food bartering between tents is going to start any time soon…
Hope you are all well and the weather in your part of the world is treating you well