Well we finally made it to New Zealand. The flight was very long and we had a 5 hour lay over in Auckland. We got to the hotel at about 4 o’clock. Just in time to see the opening ceremonies for the Rugby world cup which is being held here in New Zealand.
Our hotel is very small but nice. It is located just on the out skirts of down town Christchurch. Typically the Antarctic teams are put up in down town, but due to the earthquake that happened a few months ago, most of down town had collapsed since they were very old buildings.
Today we went down to the CDC (clothing distribution center) and got all our clothing for Antarctica. We also packed up everything and put it on a palate that will be loaded on out C-17 air force plane. After everything was done, it finally started sinking in how excited I am about this trip and that I can’t believe that I’m leaving tomorrow!
So tomorrow we meet up at the airport at 0615 to dress in our arctic gear and then head to the plane. We have two potential plans at that point. Plan 1 is very simple: load up and fly to McMurdo. Plan 2 kinda just sucks: load up fly to McMurdo but don’t land because of weather then get turned around and fly back to New Zealand. This is termed a Boomerang flight. This happens about 50% of the time this time of the year due to storms and unpredictable weather. The record for Boomerang flights is 7 turn arounds. I’m really hoping that this wont happen to us.
But as of now, it’s up early and then the 6 hour flight to McMurdo. Hopefully tomorrow I will be writing from the station on the ice.