Wow, what an incredible place this is – it goes way beyond my greatest expectations! I have been here a full week now, which has just flown by! We (26 of us) arrived by plane, having flown first to Cape Town, then down to Novolazarevskaya (a Russian base) where we camped overnight. We were met with such warm hospitality by the Russians and I was thrilled to see lots of IPY logos on the tents, the calendar, the planes – the list goes on and on!! What a great introduction to the Antarctic!
Arriving at Halley Research Station was so exciting – we had a wonderful welcoming committee waiting for us and once we had unloaded all of our kit we were quickly shepherded off to our respective sleeping quarters to have a couple of hours of rest and relaxation and a cup of tea!
Our first afternoon at Halley involved a tour of the base and skidoo training and the fun didn’t stop there!! On my second day, I was given the opportunity to go and spend time with the locals, also known as Emperor Penguins! However, getting to the penguins involved hitching a ride on a sledge attached to the back of a Challenger for 45 minutes, which was a little chilly!
Once our trusty field GAs (Toddy and Richard) had been down onto the sea ice to make sure all was safe, we were allowed to head down to see the penguins which was such a wonderful experience. They were so trusting and incredibly curious about these big blobs of orange (our overalls are a lovely bright orange colour – no chance of getting lost in these!!) coming to see them!! We sat, eating our sandwiches, surrounded by penguins – not a bad way to spend a Sunday afternoon! Everywhere you looked you would see something different – a parent feeding a chick, a baby chick snoozing, an adult cruising along on it’s belly – the list goes on and on! It was a real privilege to be amongst these amazing creatures.
Life on base is certainly different! We work 12 hour shifts, long days but the chefs keep producing the most wonderful food to keep us all going! We have all sorts of people here, all so important in keeping the base running – vehicle mechanics, plumbers, electricians, chefs and of course the scientists to name but a few!
We are currently gearing up for the arrival of the Ernest Shackleton, which is due to arrive on Saturday 15th, and the cargo ship, Anderma which will be bringing the ‘beginnings’ of Halley VI! It is going to be so exciting being here at the start of the new build! More information along with daily updates on Halley VI can be found at http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/living_and_working/research_stations/halley/halleyvi/
Stay tuned for pictures and stories from those around the station working hard to get this amazing project off the ground and from some of the scientists trying to carry out their science at the same time!
What is IPY
Monday, 10 December 2007 21:16
Hello from Halley!Written by Nicola Munro
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Comment Link Tuesday, 30 November 1999 00:00 posted by Lucia Simion
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