Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Yet Another Storm

We had a brief respite from the bad weather and made a dash for Penguin Ranch. Jessica and I were the first ones out at the Ranch. It laid partially buried in the snow. This is how the Ranch looked from our vehicle.

Here's Paul shoveling snow.

Here is our first sunset from out at the Ranch, looking at Mt. Erebus.

Our new sleep hut (the box car with the tent sides) is okay on a calm night, although the blue tent walls make everything inside look as if it is lit by a uv light -- very strange and slightly disorienting, see below. The propane cylinders went out just as Paul and Jessica were about to go to sleep. They had to stay up and change them. I'm embarrassed to say that I slept through the whole thing. Note that Panda Monium, Junior, and Betty Bunny (in background) have joined the camp.

We had the GAs (general assistants) from town help install snow fencing. Here's Paul working on the fencing.

Alas, the nice weather was short lived. Another storm started the next afternoon. Here's our solar pod buffeted by the wind and snow.

The Ranch in another storm. Paul is in the photo.

The snow fence was only partially done. The GAs left for McMurdo soon after this photo was taken. This fencing should keep the bulk of the snow out of the Ranch, although we still need to finish that fence.

Here's the sleep hut/tent in the storm That sleep hut in a storm is awful! It's cold, it flaps in the wind and it leaks snow in several places. We all miss our old Jamesway.

At the height of the storm, below is what you could see out of the window. I can see why it is called a white-out. It only lasted for a few moments, but you could easily lose your way. Losing the horizon is also very eerie.