2 December 2009 - Gallivanting Around the Hills
Today a lot different to the adventure that we had yesterday but it was still fun in its own way. Again we were taking at terrestrial (land) samples but this time our mode of transportation and location were different. Instead of a helicopter, we had a huge Ford F350 van to drive around in. We named the van the 'Mystery Machine' after the van in the cartoon Scooby Doo.
Steve driving the 'Mystery Machine'
All of he sampling sites that we needed to go to were in and around McMurdo Station so we drove on the gravel roads with all of our sample jars to places close to where we needed to sample and then walked from there. We trekked up and down hills, across snow, over a few small frozen lakes and through construction yards to get our samples. It was pretty sunny and warm (0 deg C, 32 deg F) so it made the sampling comfortable and the views spectacular. From some locations we got some amazing views of Mt Erebus, the sea ice and the surrounding mountains and islands.
Terry and Steve trekking up a hill
Andrew finding a sampling site while Steve waits (Observation Hill in background)
Mt Erebus puffing away with Castle Rock in the middle-ground on the right
The Mystery Machine in front of a glacier and Mt Erebus
The back of McMurdo Station and Observation Hill
Andrew and Hae Cheol walk across a frozen lake
While we were on our travels, we came close to the wind turbines that were being built for Antarctica New Zealand by Meridian Energy. Two turbines looked almost finished and they were working on the third one. With all the wind around, it will be good to be able to harness some of that energy to make electricity.
A wind turbine being built (left) and a completed one (right)
The blades for the third wind turbine