Sunday, January 18, 2015

What a SUNday!

I couldn't help but use a cheesy play on words for the title.

Yesterday was Sunday, and it truly lived up to its name.  Today was the first sunshine we have seen here for a long time, and if you couldn't tell from my last post the weather was starting to get to me a little bit.

As I mentioned I didn't get my flight into town this weekend so I remained at F6.  All of the work on my project that could be done with one person had been completed, so I was at the disposal of anyone who needed my help.  The engineer with the LiDAR equipment needed help lugging the gear up from the bottom of Delta Stream up all the way to its headwaters near spalding pond.   

I am not positive, but I believe the mountain range shown below is called the Royal Society Range.

Below is a view of the Ferrar Glacier which fills up this entire valley.  In the distance is the McMurdo Sound, and you can barely make out Mt. Erebus surrounded by clouds way back in the distance.

Below is a great view of the Fryxell Basin.  The clouds couldn't have been better!

We then arrived to the bottom of Delta Stream, loaded up the ATV, and finally headed home at about 20:00 (slowly getting better with this military time thing).  It was hardly a day off, but the hike was so amazing I didn't mind.

Today someone from town came out to help me with my work.  If we need help with something and no one else around is available, we can request for someone who works in town to come out on a morale trip.  We did two pebble counts (I felt really bad putting her through this) and we hiked around my site a bit.  I hope she had a good time, but there really isn't anything super unique right in the vicinity of my stream.  We headed home and a helicopter landed right as we arrived.  The pilot said the weather was coming in and asked if she would prefer to spend the night at F6 or at Marble Point.  Marble point is the helicopter support base for the dry valleys, where they fuel up, and they can stop there and spend the night in bad weather.  She chose marble point because there was a better chance for the weather to clear up and for her to catch a ride back to McMurdo.  It was fun to have her out helping out.  I learned a bunch about how ridiculously awesome Alaska is, and I have now been convinced of where I need to live next.

I forgot to mention, on Saturday morning I woke up to an inch or two of snow on the ground.  I was walking in to F6 to start the morning with some coffee and vitamin B (bacon), and I snapped a photo of this spectacular view.  I can't believe I only have two more days in the dry valleys.  The time here has absolutely flown by, and I do not want it to end.



  1. awesome photos, zach - sounds like an amazing hike! and i bet that girl who had to count pebbles didn't care - she got to go to the dry valleys, who cares what you do there :-)
    ran across this today, thought it was pretty cool and thought of you:

    two more days ... then to NZ? fresh veggies? the smell of land and trees?

  2. Hey Natalie. Those photos are such an awesome find! Yeah I am supposed to leave the Dry Valleys tomorrow and then be in McMurdo until next Monday. Then freshies, trees, and darkness in NZ! I don't want to leave yet but NZ is going to be a great experience too.