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Day one hundred seven

20 Mar 2019

A major challenge:

One of the main challenges of working in Antarctica is, surprisingly, not the cold. However, it is related to the weather. For a few days now my weather app has predicted that today would be a pretty sunny day, then it predicted a cloudy day with some precipitation, then it predicted snow/rain most of the day. Even the day of, the app may still get it wrong!

Here is my dilemma: this week I am taking down my experimental sites so we can start packing everything up. All I need is a 1.5 hour period with no precipitation so I can take one final set of carbon flux measurements before we remove the experiment.

This morning we had a magnificent sunrise.

Magnificent sunrise

I decided to take a chance - perhaps the app still got it wrong? Would I still get my 1.5 hours and be able to take my carbon flux measurements?

And after a morning meeting we quickly left to our field site at Litchfield Island. Then this happened (and I am not referring to the fur seals):

Heavy snow

We came prepared though and we still managed to collect some data and our probes that measure soil fertility.

I see on my weather app that Friday looks good (and Saturday)… Perhaps plan the measurements and take-down on Friday then, and use Saturday as a backup? It is hard to plan here, but all we can do is try.

Besides, even when it is snowing - it is absolutely beautiful here. That makes us happy!


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