On Sunday the 21st we had the opportunity to take a recreation trip to Scott and Shackelton’s 1911 hut at Cape Evans about 15 miles away. On the way to we encountered EMPORER PENQUINS! We watched these curious guys waddle almost a mile to check us out. They walked about 30ft away! It was a really nice first encounter. I’m really excited to see them so early in the season.
The "Delta" we took out to Cape Evans
Cape Evans Hut, Barnes Glacier in the background
Last Thursday I (Josh) got the ride of a lifetime. I was sent out to repair a broken Pisten Bully that was enroute to a remote field camp. Because it was over 50 miles away we took a helicopter out to repair the machine in the field. It was an awesome service call. I had to put together a tool kit with everything I needed, as well as try to plan for what parts I needed. The helicopter pilot was totally cool, we flew really close (and along side) huge icebergs, glaciers, and the dry valleys.
The disabled traverse equipment
The View! Ice berg is almost 200ft high
Friday morning I received the call that the Pisten Bully I repaired yesterday was having more problems. The good news is they made it to their remote field camp, but unfortunately it was broke down again. The cool part is that Branden and I had less then an hour to talk to the people on satellite phone to diagnose the new set of problems, get tools, parts, lunch and get to the helo-hanger for a second helicopter flight, this time to Granite Harbor field camp, (80 miles away). It was really nice out there. After fixing the Pisten Bully, I also repaired there broken snowmobile.
Granite Harbor Field Camp
I had the fortunate pleasure of getting selected as the mechanic to support a traverse to Black Island. Black Island is about 35 miles away, and located there is the Telecommunication relay station, essentially a double-wide trailer house with two really big NASA satellite dishes. The entire phone, internet, and other radio communication to the outside world go through this relay station. I accompanied three vehicles as we drove to this field station to deliver supplies, return old equipment. I was only there about 2.5 hours, but I managed to replace the rear window of a D6 dozer too.
A Sea-ice pressure dome on the way to black Island