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25 November, 2004

“Hey, you’re helicopter is here to get you!”

Temperature: 18*F

Location: Lake Hoare

The diving at Lake Hoare is done. This morning, we started packing up the bulkier dive gear which required several people to move around. We packaged up the compressor, built a pallet of dive tanks, air tanks, oxygen bottles, weight belts, etc. The helicopter technicians will come build a sling load for all this gear in the next day or two. I will package up the remaining gear and all the samples we collected in the next two days.

Ian and Kay headed back to Scott base this morning. It was sad to see them go. We had quite an international team going: Ian is from New Zealand, Kay is from Germany, and I am from America. We had all convened in Antarctica to study the mats on the bottom of the lake.

The rest of the day was reserved for preparing the Thanksgiving feast; and what a feast it was! People baked, cleaned, and hiked in to camp from all over the valley. In all, we had 25 people at camp. It was amazing to watch, and help with, the extraordinary efforts people went to in order to prepare a “typical” Thanksgiving dinner.

It was quite enjoyable to have a chance to really talk to all the people I have been bumping shoulders with the last week or two. Their dedication to learning about, and understanding, their research is admirable. After a few hours of visiting, people started to depart for their respective field camps. Some groups hiked back while others caught a helo ride that was heading in their direction. Where else can you here people say “Hey, you’re helicopter is here to get you!”

1) Helicopter getting ready to depart with Ian and Kay.

2) Packs from folks that hiked into camp for Thanksgiving from surrounding field camps.

3) We all drew a "Turkey Hand" for Thanksgiving.

4) The whole Thanksgiving day gang; we were trying to be a little colorful!

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