Monday, May 7, 2007

Safe arrival at Summit camp

This morning we left Kangerlussuaq and flew to Summit Camp! The photo above is the inside of the C-130 showing the cargo and are seating arrangements. Today's flight was only about 2 hours and we had a smooth landing with skis on Summit's ice runway. Immediately after arriving we enjoyed our first Summit meal chicken, pasta, philly cheese steak, salad, pasta salad, fries home baked bread, and brownies all which was very good. Following lunch we were briefed by the camp manager and camp paramedic. A fingertip blood oxygen meter was available so that we could check our percent blood oxygen and pulse. Nobody experienced any altitude problems other than mild headaches. We had blood o2 levels between 85 and 92% saturation, which is pretty good.

During the afternoon we moved the majority of the equipment off the pallets and transported it to the Satellite camp using snow mobiles. The photo above shows the crew preparing to off load the C-130. In the afternoon the weather at Summit was cold but sunny. Currently there is 24 hour sunlight at Summit, but this evening it became overcast and the temperature has dropped to -24*F (-30*F with wind chill).

Tonight will be first night sleeping in arctic oven tents. These tents have double walls and are designed to heat up in the sun. Unfortunately it is overcast, so it could be quite cold tonight. Each person has a personal tent (about 7' by 7') that is equipped with a sleeping mat.

Tomorrow we will continue transporting cargo to the Satellite camp and start to set up the instruments. The is also another flight scheduled to come up from Kangerlussuaq that will be carrying the remainder of our scientific equipment.

Above are Katrine (graduate student from UC-Irvine), Bonnie (undergrad at GaTech), and Luke (graduate student from University of New Hampshire) on their way to dinner in the Big House. The Big House is at Summit is on stilts so they can jack it up as the snow accumulates.

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