Sunday, July 3, 2016

76 - Wrong clouds and my Mid Winters and elections Antarctic Style..........

Hello Friends,

first thing first i'd like to apologize to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, Craig our Senior Weather Observer and Aaron our Meteorology Technician and you for misleading you in my last entry. The clouds in my last entry were not Noctilucent but in fact they were Nacreous Clouds. Please forgive me......

SO that in mind now I guess I need to explain what Nacreous clouds. They are still one of the high types of clouds normally floating at around 15-25km not the 80-85 of the Noctilucent ones. Also know as "Mother of pearl" due to the similarities to the way they look.

They can also be man made too, I did read somewhere that the space shuttle has caused them from when the rockets separate. Water coming from the separation of stages in the rockets causes an escape of water and at the altitudes creates Nacreous clouds. Below is a video I found on youtube of exactly that event.



SO Mid Winters begun for me as Slushy, kitchen hand. I had swapped with someone else to make put me in the kitchen though as I though having me in there would help Lesley our Chef. Of course most of it was bakery stuff like the white bread im making below......

Pic Aaron Stanley
And some scrolls here........

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Then there was all the goodies Lesley made.....

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Pic Aaron Stanley

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A couple more of mine here.......

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Pic Aaron Stanley
Butter even in the shape of penguins.....

Pic Aaron Stanley
Table set..........

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Then there was all the toasts.........

Pic Aaron Stanley
And Ali reading out all the mid winters replies and thanks for all your email including the sneaky ones from Bruce & Sally, Ang & Eyelashes and Greg & Christine .

Pic Aaron Stanley

So were were initially meant to be doing the traditional mid winters swim but unfortunately it was a little cool. It was not only cool -35c but it was also blowing at 15 knots making the windchill in the high -40c's. Swimming was therefor we needed to fill a little time and what better way thank to do a little science and show how to make snow the easy way. Throwing a pot of boiling water into the air when the temp well is cold. Ive done it at -24c but you still get a little water dropping and obviously the colder it is the better it works..........have a look at the science behind why this happens HERE. There is a video there if it happening but below are the pics.......

Pic Aaron Stanley
Pic Aaron Stanley
Pic Aaron Stanley
Pic Aaron Stanley
We did attempt to contact Bill our summer Station Leader but he let it go to answer machine but we did leave a message......

Pic Aaron Stanley
Then the shenanigans begun.........

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Pic Aaron Stanley
Pic Aaron Stanley
After much practice........the band was formed we practiced, well we did on the night. First time ive played the drums probably since I was in the Expo 88 marching band.

Pic Aaron Stanley
Deverall lead singer and with glasss like that youd think he would be better playng a banjo.....

Pic Aaron Stanley
Paul sporting his 6 hour beard, on second guitar........

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Drums well they came back quick enough!

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The 16 crazy people im wintering with...........

Pic Aaron Stanley

So as I mentioned we couldn't do the mid winters swim on the day we had to wait for a couple days before it would warm up enough to make it possible. I mentioned before the last time i did it was in Canada with my good friend Mary. Well it was -27c that time and this time is was only -15c but well it felt a hell of a lot colder believe me. Below was a series of pics Aaron had taken and I put them together into a little video for your enjoyment. Try not to laugh too much at the face I pull.


 So yesterday in Australia was our National elections and we like everyone else had to do our civic duty and vote. This will definitely be one that i'll never forget as the voting booth was not a both but a tent, temperature was fridget and i'm actually talking about the temperature as it was -33c. I quickly made my choices and quickly got out of there as my hands were getting too cold. But we did our civic duty and had a BBQ to boot.

Pic: Ladge
As you can see in the above pic its been a little gloomy lately but the sun still hasn't turned up. We are about a week away from seeing the sun and to be honest I haven't really noticed it missing. We still get some light but the sun isn't getting above the horizon. I guess its the shift work I did in the bakeries but getting up and going to work in the dark is/was normal what isnt it the Auroras we get on the way to work. Its been an experience i'll remember the the rest of my life. 

Anyway this week coming ill be heading up to a place called Whoop Whoop which is where the skiway is located. Up there we will have to pick up 3 machines to bring back to station to service them. We have had to wait till now as the sea ice hasn't been thick enough to handle the weight. Now that it is and having had several blizzards we are going to have to spend a fair bit of time digging them out and debizzing them before we can start them. So expect that in the next blog.

Until then hope you enjoyed your catch up

Take care

Michael

P.S...........A year from now you will wish you had started today.
                Karen Lamb