Sunday, 25 May 2008
Saturday, 10 May 2008
Typically the windscoops form around the buildigs that we don't use in winter whilst elsewhere doorways, windows and pathways get drifted in and require daily digging.
I took a long overdue walk around Rothera Point this morning (it's been nearly a month since I last went round. It's a great walk, taking anything from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on how distracted you get by the wildlife and scenery). The light was far from ideal for photograpy but you get an idea of what the snow / ice is like at the moment.
As the sea temperature cools ice begins to form on the rocks. After last years' poor show we're keeping our fingers crossed for some decent sea ice this year. The surface of the sea begins to freeze once water temperatures reach -1.9 degrees C
It's best to let sleeping furries (Fur seals) lie - they're grumpy and very smelly. There are still a lot of them about (over 60 today) along with a few Crabeater seals, Elephant seals, snow petrels and gulls.
This is an impressive arched berg currently sat in North Cove, the large cloud was full of snow which descended on me seconds later.
Thursday was slightly more promising and allowed us to get over to and climb on a local nunatak (top of a mountain peeking through a glacier) called N26. James and I opted for a rather nice snow gulley around the back (with a not so nice walk-in through the deep snow).
Walk into the climb (we went up the wide gulley left of centre)The snow was good and the slope not too steep so we managed to do the whole route moving together (meaning we didn't have to stop to place protection / belay one another)
View from the top - looking towards Gwendolyn & McCallums Pass
Thursday evening brought strong winds and LOTS of snow, about a metre of it. It made walking around camp rather difficult and we generally opted for crawling about as it was easier! The high winds and blowing snow made things rather unpleasant and so much of the day was spent indoors reading and playing cards.
There's a skidoo under there somewhere...
Several hours of digging later - doos and sledges are returned to the surface
It took another 2 days for the snow to firm up enough to allow us to travel back home, during which time winds got up to 30-40 knots and more snow fell. Fortunatley we'd brought enough books, games and port. It took us 2 hours to dig out the tent and guy ropes which were fairly buried by this time.
Home sweet home - looking a little sorry for itself (as were we after all that digging)