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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Winding down

We are 5 days short of the second anniversary of Berrimilla's closest approach to Beechey Island. Eerie feeling!  We were about 40 miles south (so only 60 or so miles from here)  when we called it off and turned east. The weather that day in Barrow Strait was awful - freezing rain, about 30 knots from the east and ice closing in and an unhelpful forecast.

One for the wall:

Today should be the final day for packing up the camp. We're down to the minimum in the kitchen, most of the comms are down with just the C band working to keep this internet link up for as long as possible, all the science is done, greenhouse comms set up for the winter and all but the essentials packed away. Everything must be packed dry because any moisture will freeze and possibly destroy the equipment and tents etc will mildew. There will be about a metre of snow and ice in winter. Then the whole place must be made bearproof - even the Humvee where the remaining food is stored is vulnerable to a hungry bear and the doors must be cargo-strapped.

If we get flights today, some of the 13 people left here will fly out with as much of the gear as will fit and tomorrow all the rest of the people and gear. All depends on the weather - we could end up camping in the mess tent living on noodles until Polar Shelf can get to us with aircraft. Here's the forecast:

At 0430 (I'm in boat mode so three hour sleeps...) we have 8/8 at 2000 ft and 20 miles vis and it's not raining yet so flyable. We will hear from Resolute in about 3 hours.

Watch this space - the Mice are in charge.