Saturday, November 02, 2002

Finally a day off, and so I have time to crank out an update. All is going well. Bob, Jay and Mike have departed leaving the four of us to finish out the season. We are tagging seal pups every day. In the past, the first week of November has been "peak of pupping", when the most pups are born in the colonies, so this could be a busy week. We have a recon flight over the colonies tomorrow to see if we have missed any stragglers. Regular censuses of the colonies will begin once those animals and any new pups have been tagged. Here are some of the cuter things I've witnessed recently at the Big Razorback colony:

Here is a view of the Big Razorback colony:

And the setting of our camp!

We took an excursion one evening last week to see Scott's hut at Cape Evans, from which he based his successful yet fatal journey to the South Pole. You have to sign out the key to the hut from an office in town if you want to go inside. Lots of moldy old reindeer sleeping bags, biscuit tins and an amazing sense of history. These photo shows the bunk that Scott slept in, and a crate of lamp oil seen in the hut: (If these photos or history of Antarctic expeditions excite you I highly recommend the book "The Last Place on Earth" by Roland Huntford)

Nearby is the Barne Glacier where we occasionally obtain 10,000 year old ice for our gin and tonics:

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