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Is the weather your best friend or your worst enemy?

Submitted by anelles on Sat, 11/21/2015 - 14:08

Outside, the wind is blowing (between stronger and lighter) and beautiful powdery snow is falling. I would love to have a mountain, a lift and a snowboard! As it turns out the mountains are about 40km away, most of them have never been climbed, so lifts are out of the question, and the allowed amount of luggage did not include a snowboard. So, to put it mildly, right now we are not best friends with the weather.

Snowed in

Submitted by anelles on Wed, 11/18/2015 - 18:38

And here we are, sitting in our science tent again. Ironically it is sunny outside and a lot of the pictures we took look sunny and happy. What the pictures don't show, is that the wind is so strong that every hour, one of us has to go out to make sure that we will still be able to climb out of our tent. Because snow is piling up. And I mean piling up when I say this.

Waiting

Submitted by anelles on Thu, 11/12/2015 - 19:54

The things with anything that flies in Antarctica is that it relies heavier on weather than anything else. It turns out that a helicopter needs a relatively windless day with a clear sight of the horizon in order to land on the ice. And while the weather has been good so far, the wind really does not feel like cooperating.

T +1: No Antarctica yet, Waiting in Christchurch, New Zealand

Submitted by anelles on Tue, 11/03/2015 - 14:28

We should have made it by now. But ... weather in Antarctica is one of the craziest things on the planet. Meaning that you are scheduled for check-in to fly at 6:30 in the morning, but might receive a call at 4:30 in the morning that the flight will not happen. So we are waiting in Christchurch. For better weather in Antarctica and also for better weather in Christchurch. The warm and beautiful spring day from yesterday -- very strange by the way when you come from the dry and fall-like Southern California -- has changed into a muddy grey with a constant drizzle.

Antartica: T -5 days

Submitted by anelles on Mon, 10/26/2015 - 12:02

After having shipped most of our equipment already more than a month ago, we are getting ready to leave. We, who is we? We are a team of three scientists, who go down to Antarctica this season to perform maintenance and some environmental studies at the site of ARIANNA. Since I, Anna, am the newbie on the team, who is going "to the ice" for the first time, I have been put in charge to report about our experiences and what three weeks in an isolated field camp feel like. Plus, I am German, which might give me the opportunity to also pick-up on interesting American habits.

Preparing to leave for antarctica

Submitted by anelles on Mon, 10/12/2015 - 17:49

When inventory lists of 25 pages haven been typed over and four heavy (~100 kg or ~250 lbs) boxes have been closed and sent to the boat, then the preparations for Antarctica are in full blow.

We will use this spot to report on our (somewhat) yearly trips down to the Ross ice-shelf, how life is down there and how the experiment is doing. Stay tuned for updates -- if the internet permits. Believe it or not, Antarctica does not have a full-speed fiber connection to the outside behind every hill of snow.