Day 1 – Ice Cold   7 comments

Our tip down to McMurdo was pretty uneventful. It was a total of 6 1/2 hours on a C-17 air force plane. We were able to move around the plane and I even got to take a little trip up into the cockpit.

Picture from cockpit of C-17

Cargo Hold in C-17

When I was in the cockpit, I could look out the window and see the very thin sea ice that forms all the way around Antarctica. The ice in this area is not very thick (only a few inches to a foot) and has several cracks and breaks in it. The cracks and breaks in the ice allow for seals, penguins, and whales to feed in the area as they have several breathing holes.

Sea Ice from plane

When we finally landed in Antarctica, our plane landed on the sea ice. Close inshore the ice is thick (10-15ft) and can handle the impact of the plane. We were then shuttled from the landing strip to McMurdo Station. McMurdo Station is more like a town. It has everything. Store, barber, medical, dental, library, laboratories, and more. It’s pretty incredible that people can live here year round.

After collecting our bags and finding our dorm room, our team headed for the dining room. Dinner was amazing. There were so many options to choose from. And not only was dinner awesome, dessert was incredible too. Soft serve ice cream with every topping you can choose, cake, pies, fresh baked cookies. Once we had our fill of what ever we wanted to eat, we headed to the dorm room for a little relaxation before meeting up for a night of cards at the town bar. My father would be proud to hear that I taught the entire team how to play hearts and we have decided to have a game of hearts every Saturday night at our field camp. Looser has to wake up Sunday morning and make omelets for everyone.

On the way back from The Cafe at 10:30pm

One of my favorite things so far is the twilight hours. We left the bar at 10:30 and it was still relatively light out. Even at midnight there was still a dim glow. Tonight my friend Darren and I are going to stay out and hopefully see the last stars of the season tonight. They are only visible for a few hours each night. It’s going to be cold, but worth it.

Sunset, McMurdo Station looking at the Dry Valleys


Posted October 5, 2011 by dwoodward707 in McMurdo Station

7 responses to “Day 1 – Ice Cold

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  1. Hi Danielle
    What wonderful photos. Its so fun to see where you are. You look nice and toasty. Have fun. I love you. Love Mommy

  2. como estas soy gina la amiga de tu mama cuidate mucho

  3. Hi Danielle,
    I love the posts and pictures!!!! I love your hat, very stylish!
    You sure are one brave little fish, my dear. Can’t wait to read more of your adventures.
    LOTS of love, hugs and kisses,
    Aunt Deb, Uncle Giorgio, Sessa and John

    Aunt Deb and Family
  4. Hi Danielle,
    Oh, the memories that flood back. Owen and I spent 10 days living in a tent in the interior of Antarctica in 1998 while looking for meteorites with a group of geologists. I didn’t take off my hat the entire 10 days…talk about hat hair!!! My hat was the only thing sticking out of my sleeping bag at night. And it certainly wasn’t as stylish as yours. Great pictures.
    I know that this adventure will be a turning point in your career and I wish you all the best. Stay warm!

  5. Hi Danielle,
    Okay, first off a joke. Groans are acceptable.

    Who is the penguin’s favorite Aunt?

    Aunt Arctic

    And with that groan, I can assure you that it is my purpose, as your ex-officio Uncle, to keep your face warm by laughing more.

    Wishing you success in your adventures and thank you for making plankton the topic of conversation in my household. I’m going to the fish market today and explaining what I’ve learned to the guys behind the counter.

    Lots of love and great to talk with you before you departed …


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