10 August, 1997
Nevins journal 08/10/97
Today was to be a day of rest so almost all the Toolik people went out on various trips on their own time. Jeremy and I went out with two others to go down into the Brooks Range along the Highway. After we went over the pass we stopped to have lunch. This sounds much easier than it was because we had lunch by walking up one of the hills along the road. Most sane persons would call the hill we climbed mountains but we decided to take a stroll. I did not make it all the way up. The weather changed and the clouds moved in obscuring the mountain tops. Rather than take a chance on getting lost in the clouds, I split from the other three and started down. I was not up to the speed of climb needed to make the top. My trip down to the truck was not too bad and I made good time. In fact the time was so good that I got further down than the others expected and when they did not find me on the mountain, they assumed that I was hurt or lost. While they were looking on the slope I was at the truck. We sure relearned not to split a group of climbers. One of the reasons we missed was that I took a different line down incase the clouds moved in and cut my visibility down to the point where I would be unable to see the road. In order to avoid the chance of getting lost in a cloud I picked a route that allowed me to walk along the side of a ridge that went down to the truck. This proved to be an unnecessary precaution and caused a little trouble in getting reconnected.
On the way in as well as the way back we saw dallsheep in the top of the pass. The tour buses were stopping to look at the animals and we went right along with them. Incidentally, we went from about mile 132 to mile 185 on the Haul Road. The mountains start about 15 mi from Toolik and there are no trees just alpine or arctic tundra. By the time we had gone over the pass, we came out into the tree line that is a latitudinal treeline and there was also a altitudinal tree line on each mountain. We stopped at the sign that marks the furthest North spruce and posed for photos.
When we got back to Camp supper was ready and after wards Sam and Anna Laura and I went out to an experiment that we set up a couple of days ago and installed food wrap over one set of sensors. We hope to show a relationship of to temperature to evaporation in a tundra pulsa. The equipment has about 3 more days and then download to my computer. We hope to repeat the experiment at Point Barrow a few times when we go up there. The test site will be on an ice polygon which is near the test site. ThatUs it good night!
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