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15 December, 2002

Traverse Delay

I'm afraid today's journal must be brief, but I just wanted to make an update on our progress. We have been delayed a couple of days in leaving Goodwin Nunatak for our traverse to MacAlpine Hills. The other day was beautiful and perfect for packing, so we took advantage of the good weather and packed up all but the essential gear, including our solar and wind power generators. That night the wind picked up causing ground blizzards and delayed our departure. Although the weather is fine here, today, the horizon looks fuzzy, indicating ground blizzards exist in the direction of our destination. It's not worth risking frostbite or extreme winds that could topple our sledges to get an extra day of meteorite searching.

We are able to run our electronic equipment on battery power only, without a way to recharge them until we reach MacAlpine Hills. It will actually be the day after our traverse before we get the power up, because that's about a half-day job setting up the generators. Chances are that we won't be able to make any phone calls or journal entries until we have our power up and running.

Tent days are really a part of the Antarctic experience. None of us are bored. Jamie is teaching himself French. Dante, Danny, Linda, and Nancy learned some new card games. And Scott, Carl, and I seem to making great progress on our reading. Scott enjoys light reading like "Crime and Punishment" while I polished off 120 pages of "Lord of the Rings." There's always plenty to do.

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