19 November, 1997
The wind is blowing and the snow is blowing right along with it. I am reminded that this is how the pictures of Antarctica looked in all the magazines and even on TV not to many years ago. Since the weather was so bad, surveying for the day was canceled. I stayed in the base camp and helped in the dining hall. It was nice to do domesticated things since it has been awhile since I have done that.
I did get to visit the food storage area. It is neat to see the food just packed in there boxes but sitting outside where no one bothers it. The wind was howling and spreading snow all over the camp so the trips outside were limited and short. On our excursion we also visited the cooler for the frozen food. They really do not need a refrigerator so they have dug a trench and placed a door on it. The hole used to store frozen food is about 15 meters beneath the ground. The day we visited the cooler, it felt warmer there than outside. The outside was really warm but the wind and snow made it impossible to be out in.
The wind had started to howl about midnight and continued to do so for at least 24 hours. The bad part was the drifting snow which made it impossible to see or move about to much. I guess it would be considered a condition II. We did go up to the tents and try to insure that they would not collapse from the wind and snow. Many of them had to have snow added around the bottom to keep the skirts down. The tents are still warm inside but the snow and the wind can and do blow them down and collapse the shell. It is often difficult to sleep with the conditions that are around us. I kept thinking my tent was going to collapse on top of me. It didnít - it is still standing and still warm inside.
If you are playing on the web, check out http://space.augsburg.edu It is a neat site that allows you to look at data from a group called AGO. They take care of some instruments that are used for seismic and wave information. The AGO group work on a line of instruments and try to keep them running all year round. They fix them during the summer and the instruments stay working and produce data during the winter which can be seen on that web site. Personal: Ron and Joe, if you read this, hope that your summer was great and next time scones and tea are on me. Thanks for the help with the computer.
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