Chchchchanges...

It has been overcast, snowy, and the wind has been blowing a sustained 50-60 knots going on six days now. Everybody is a little crazed from it, and coupled with being end of season tired, people are stepping lightly around each other here. In spite of the weather, there are definitely a lot of changes happening around Palmer Station. For the last couple of months, all we've seen is the occasional leopard seal hauled out on an ice floe, and a couple of resident sheathbill scavengers that hang around station, but lately there has been a lot more wildlife around as the days get longer. Lots more giant petrels, kelp gulls (I think I got my id right), cormorants, and various other seals. I'm really hoping the penguins come back before we leave. We get Adelie, Chinstrap, and Gentoo penguins here. It definitely feels like spring is around the corner, even with the terrible weather we've been having lately. I guess I shouldn't be complaining about the weather, it is Antarctica after all ;-)...

Yesterday on my day off the wind let up a bit and I was able to take a hike (snowshoe) on the glacier and over to Point 8 on the south side of glacier that is accessible to us. The break in the wind wasn't quite as long as the hike, so I got pretty hammered on the way back, but it was a welcome break from the aforementioned craziness of being inside for pretty much all of five days.

The ship will be here in a little less than a month, and people are really starting to talk about the end of the season. It turns out that they couldn't get the funding for the comm tech and I to stay an extra two weeks, and I'll be coming home with the rest of the winter crew. I'm pretty happy about that, as that was going to be the hard part of staying longer, not getting to leave with the people I spent the winter with.

That's the update for now. There were some beautiful nacreous clouds this morning, and I snapped a few pics with my phone. This is from the back deck of the carpentry shop, looking uphill towards the sat comm radome/RF Hut and TerraLab. They don't do them justice, but here you go...







The station doctor, Steve Allerding, just pointed me at a bunch of pictures of the clouds that he took, so here they are too.

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Courtesy of Steve Allerding

Comments

  1. Wow! Coolest clouds ever!! Glad you'll be able to come home with your winter crew. YAY!!!

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