I'm Home !!!!!!

I finally made it home. After a 60 hour travel time, (I did get 1 night in a hotel with 8 hours sleep) I finally got home to Michigan. Feels great to be home, but boy, am I tired. I seem to be having trouble adjusting to the time. Got up at 9 this morning. That would have been 3am McMurdo time. Yeah, it's like that. I'll post the pictures after I take a nap. Emmalee came out to the airport to meet me last night. I was able to sneak up behind her. She turned around when I spoke to her and it startled her to see someone that close to her.

I Am On The Way Home

I am now in Christchurch. As it turns out, the airport is fine. No noticable damage to facilities or tarmac. The heaviest damage is on the south side of the city and the Central Business District (CBD). All of us that have worked search and rescue inthe past have volunteered to help, but they have teams from all over the world that have come in, so individuals without team equipment are not required. That is outstanding news.

I'm Coming Home

OK gang, here's the skinny. I have just come from the meeting when we find out what is supposed to happen. The good news is I get to leave Mc Murdo. The bad news is I don't get to leave until Sunday morning. I fly into Christchurch at about noon on Sunday and will fly a shuttle up to Auckland Sunday night. I should get a chance to fly on from there on Monday sometime. As soon as I can I will post some pictures I've been taking lately. Having to share the internet at the kiosk makes it had to take the time to upload them. Everyone is trying to keep their email updated as well.

New Zealand Earthquake

First of all, I want everyone to know I am perfectly safe. I am still in Mc Murdo. We have been hit with the worst storm of the season this week. There are snow drifts as tall as I am. It was hard to get home from the bar last night. My flight had been cancelled with no knowlege of when it might be rescheduled. Because of this and the earthquake in Christchurch, Donna and I have decided to cancel our vacation together as well. The hotel we were to stay in has been severely damaged. When we are able to leave here we're not even sure if we'll go through New Zealand or Tasmania.

Final Days

I am in the last two days before I leave the land of ice. The summer thaw is the greatest any ne in our group can remember. The weather has been pretty good the whole season. The orcas are out in greater numbers than ever, but none are coming close to our side of the water, so I'm sorry, but no good pictures of them. I do have a few more pictures of seals and penguins, but I don't have a way at the moment to upload them, so I'll do that when I can. This has been a fantastic time and I have thoroughly enjoyed almost every minute of it. In a way, I'll be sorry to go.

New Trips, New Questions

As there are new trips coming about because of equipment installs and bring in equipment for the winter as the summer season draws to a close, There are still questions the masses are thinking of, but shy to ask. Here are a couple that came in recently and I thought I would share them with the group. Remember that I have tried to add trivia onlong the throughout my posts and answers to comments, so have fun sharing them with your friends. They will be imporessed with the amount of useless information you have.

Aftermath Of Water World Trip

Well, they made a decision on what to do with the tower and remaining equipment. We're going to wait for cold weather to freeze the equipment into the ice and fly out by helicopter to chop it back out and bring it in for refurbishment. In the meantime, we are going to arrange a helo trip to site survey a new location on shore over at Black Island to put up a new station. We have new equipment on hand and will begin putting that out in the field for all the sites beginning in two weeks to replace the existing equipment.

When Disaster Strikes

A funny thing happened on the way to the weather sight today... One of our remote weather stations failed on Christmas day so they asked me to go out there today to troubleshoot the cause. We were about two miles away when we spotted the problem. The tower the gear was mounted to was laying on the ground. AS we approached, there were more and more patches of open water. When we finally got to the site, after a lot of dodging open pools of water, we found the guy stakes had melted out of the ice causing the tower to fall. In fact, the tower waslying in about two feet of water.

Trivia about the South Pole

If anyone is interested in a strange fact: The magnetic South Pole is at 65° 0′ 0″ S, 138° 0′ 0″ E. This is at the edge of the ice shelf below the middle of Australia. This is from 2008 so I assume the real position is nearer 61 degrees S. Just thought you might be interested in knowing that.

The South Pole Has Been Conquered

Well, I've made it to the South Pole. The trip went fine except we left 4 hours late and the pickup plane arrived an hour early. What this means is that I thought we were going to have 4 hours more time than we ended up with. We were aligning equipment and tuning radios. I got everything done that I was told needed to be done. Unfortunately, there wasn't time to take any pictures to speak of. I took some pictures of glaciers on the way down, but once we got there I had no time until we were back waiting for permission to board.


% of penguin pee in the ice:

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