First Flight Successful

I have completed my first field trip by helicopter. We flew out to AWS111 (About 16 miles Southeast of McMurdo out on the pack ice) and replaced the dome on the camera. We also reorientated the antenna to point to the correct tower back at Mc Murdo. We then went to AWS104 (About 12 miles East of McMurdo) to troubleshoot the camera that wasn't working there. The camera was working and the IT folks could talk to the datalogger on site, but the images were not coming through. We brought that one back with us.

First Field Trip

Tomorrow morning, my Wednesday, I get to make my first field trip by helicopter. I am going to site 111 to replace the weather camera. Thursday I'll being going up to Crater Hill to inventory the equipment. Friday I'm off to the South pole. I've spent all day yesterday and today testing the windbird for Black Island and the camera for 111. This is actually turning out to be a busy week. Finally. Oh yeah, I'm in town this week and next, so I'm eligible for field trips. Anything to stay busy.

The seal that came to visit

Here are some pictures of a Weddell seal that came out to the tower to visit. I was about 10 feet away when I took the last few pictures. This is the same seal I took pictures of before.

My Room

Well, here I am just getting off my first mid shift. Tired as all get out, but wanted to get the pictures of my room posted. Also, for those of you that haven't heard my job description yet, here it is...

Boring Week

Well, the week is almost up and I'm afraid there is not much to report. I have drive a Mat-track for the first time. A mat-track is a 1 ton pickup truck with short tracks instead of tires. They look pretty cool except you can only go about 10 miles an hour or the transmission overheats. I made a trip earlier this week to Willi Field earlier and then Pegasus field. I left at 5:30 pm and didn't get back until 10pm. I have never made such a slow trip in my life. They certainly don't need to worry about anyone speeding in that thing. I also made my first snowmobile journey this week.

Trips Planned

So. All of my Antartic training is now complete. I am now fully qualified to travel throughout the continent. Unfortunately, I haven'd everything I need to know about the equipment yet. That will come with time and working on it. On the 19th of November they are sending me to the South Pole for a day of work. I'm very excited to go. I hope to have pictures posted soon thereafter.


I just saw my first live penguins! There were four Emperor penguins blocking the road while I was traveling by snowmobile to the MLS shelter at the end of the runway. They are beautiful. I was pretty close to them, but I didn't have my camera with me. It's a good thing they decided to leave while we were going by because there are planes inbound in an hour or so. I'm sure I'll be able to get some pictures soon.

The Need for Speed

I have now passed all my classes except snowmobile training which starts in two hours.

My Address On The Ice

Tim Mayer, SOPP
McMurdo Station
PSC 469, Box 700
APO AP, 96599-1035

Remembering to use SOPP instead of SRC or RPSC on the name line will also speed things up by a couple days. They put boxes that they can't match up aside and work on them last. Packages can take a few weeks to get to me, so plan ahead.

Me? The organized one?

It is interesting that no one wants to let anyone know anything about themselves or their life off the ice. It's like it doesn't exist.

I get along with everyone fine except once in a while someone will get excited about a piece of equipment being broke and think everyone else is being lazy.


% of penguin pee in the ice:

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