22 July, 1999

July 22

Today the helicopter flew again. All of our gear was transported from the glacier camp to the staging area in McCarthy. The U-Haul was waiting. Within four hours everything and everybody was transported, loaded and we were ready to roll to Anchorage.

While Andrew and I were picking up the U-Haul yesterday, the others packed up camp. It had rained all day up at camp. It was a miserable time. Most of the camping gear was soaked. Further, a couple of bears were spotted on the hillside overlooking camp just before bedtime. Some of the wet campers did not sleep too well with worry.

In the end, the scientists are pleased. The Kennicott Glacier outburst flood had taken them by surprise. Only a mere two days had been spent in the field setting monitoring equipment. It was expected that at least two weeks would be available to set up and ready for the flood. Yet, even with the surprisingly early release, enough hydrostatic pressure transducers were in place, stream discharge measuring techniques refined, water samples collected, reflector stakes surveyed, ice radar lines sounded, and borehole video shot that a greatly enhanced understanding of the outburst flood was, and after further analysis of data, will be achieved.


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The Alaska pipeline paralleled our travel route for a distance. The pipeline connects the oil fields on the north slope of Alaska to Valdez, located in southern Alaska. From Valdez the oil is shipped in ocean-going tankers to the lower 48 states.

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