17 July...lots of news! Including more icebreaker stuff about the Polar Star and its hopeful successors, as well as the high-energy neutrino detected by IceCube that was traced back to its black hole source. And I didn't even mention the fact that it finally got down below -100ºF last week! News...
10 July! Belated midwinter greetings, along with news of the next big construction project at McMurdo and photos of the icebreaker Polar Star in drydock!
15 June...the high winds have mostly continued, creating interesting snowdrifts and setting records. Otherwise, preparations are underway for midwinters celebrations next week, and there's more ice news...ice BREAKERS and ice MELTING.
29 May. Things continue to be quiet at Pole, except for the winds, which have been high this month--resulting in low visibility and lots of snow shoveling. Otherwise, I attended the Old Antarctic Explorers Association reunion in San Antonio this month...and there are photos.
5 May...thinks at Pole are dark and quiet and auroras are outside! But the big news of the week is the reemergence of the late Nicholas Johnson's Big Dead Place!
6 April...lots of news in late March...of course there was the Pole sunset dinner on the 24th of March, but also something more unique...the 20 March 50th anniversary celebration of the dedication of the permanent Palmer Station.
18 March...less than a week until sunset and the sunset dinner. Hopefully both will be awesome. The station is mostly battened down for winter, the weather has already produced some -100ºF temperatures with wind chill, and...a research team near the Antarctic Peninsula had to be picked up by an Argentine Navy helicopter due to ice conditions.
4 March: news from...Washington DC! The official request for procurement of from one to three new heavy icebreakers has been issued!
18 February...winter has begun at Pole. The last flight of summer happened on Friday the 16th...along with a partial solar eclipse (!) leaving 40 souls behind to tend the place for the winter
By 10 February, the McMurdo shipping season had ended, and the Pole summer season was about to end.
22 January: ships have arrived at McMurdo, and there is a government shutdown. Oh, there is also a NEW South Pole marker!
17 January...more updates about the NGO trekkers, summer construction projects, and Kelly Brunt's successful NASA science traverse! And given current news out of Washington DC, a look back at what happened to the US Antarctic program during the last government shutdown in October 2013.
28 November--Now that Thanksgiving weekend is over, hopefully folks were flying north and south from McMurdo on Monday 27 November--
21 November...10 days since a Herc landed at Pole, although over the weekend a C-17 did conduct the annual practice airdrop over Pole. And it did land at McM on the way north and take waiting folks to Christchurch. Meanwhile, AL&E has been flying...they've been setting up the Pole tourist camp and have already dropped off some of the NGO trekkers. My updates on those folks are continuing here..
8 November...after a week without more flights, the second LC-130 arrived in late evening...now the majority of the 2017 winterovers are in McMurdo (or further north). And there's more news from Washington State...Al Baker, currently imprisoned for the rest of his life, has filed yet another appeal.
1 November...winter is over! The first Herc arrived today...before that, two Baslers showed up on Monday and Tuesday...the first of these brought the first 8 summer people. And more freshies.
21 July--lots of news from Pole as well as further north in Antarctica where an iceberg the size of Delaware (well, that's the comparison American sites have been using) broke off of the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula. On 18 July the New York Times published a detailed article titled "Where Else does the U.S. Have an Infrastructure Problem? Antarctica." Hmmm. And at Pole...the fast DSCS satellite has returned to service, and the South Pole Winter Games were held over 2 weeks in early July.
10 March...a certain former Antarctic research vessel is now sitting on the bottom of the Palix River estuary at Bay Center, Washington, 40 miles north of Astoria, Oregon, and the Coast Guard hired a contractor which has been hard at work dealing with the leaking fuel and oil. Some of the details are out about that Antarctic auction the first weekend in April. No specifics yet on the pieces of the dome they are selling off for scrap. And there's news about the first bit of the McMurdo master plan that may actually happen.
86-year-old Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the Moon, was medevaced from Pole after arriving as a tourist. He was flown out of Pole on 1 December and reached Christchurch on the morning of 2 December 2016.
Want an Antarctic job? On this page I've provided everything you need to know about (or at least where to find) how to get a job...updated frequently...and of course after the contract change to Leidos.
The dome is gone. And the most comprehensive web collection of dome deconstruction photos is here! And the message boards are still around...stop by the new home of Mike Poole's Antarctic Memories, which now includes the archives of Glenn Grant's Iceboard. If you have questions or problems with this excellent resource...the best place for info on jobs and life on the ice, ask me for help!
My second winter was in 2005 as the Title II Inspector (huh, what's that?)...and stayed on for a month after the 21 October station opening until the summer person showed up. I returned to the US on 21 January after 2 months in NZ/OZ. Hopefully before I left I wasn't too toasty to write a feature article for the 30 October 2005 Antarctic Sun..... Read it for yourself and decide...
More news updated 10 July.
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