Only a few more weeks till warm sun, good food and good beer. These are the days that my cravings for fresh vegetables and fresh meat grow stronger and stronger. The food in McMurdo has been the worst this year. I have never been one to rave about the menu, but it is well agreed upon that this season is the pits. I have compile my top ten places I am going to eat when I arrive in Christchurch, New Zealand. Those who have traveled there may know them well.
one.... Sala Sala
sushi, miso Soup... yummy. I adore the Canterbury Roll. geoff loves their Spicy Tuna Roll.
two.... Dux De Lux
a brew pub offering wonderful vegetarian fare. we enjoy drinking their Norwester Ale, eating nachos and sitting outside talking with friends. The also have great salads.
three.... Dimitris Souvlaki Bar
inexpensive and delicious. i get the chicken souvlaki
four.... The Twisted Hop
a newer brew pub that geoff and i discovered last year.
five.... Two Fat Indians
indian food. i heart chicken korma, medium and garlic naan. accompanied by a Monteith's Celtic.
six.... The Brewer's Arms
ostrich, kangaroo, wild boar... and lots of beer on tap.
seven.... The Coffee House
this is one of my favorites. not geoff's. he doesn't indulge in the bean. i do. the coffee list is long and luscious. a coffee lovers must.
eight.... Sala Sala.... again.
i do love sushi
nine.... The Art Fair Food Bazaar
ten.... any Thai restaurant.
they are not all created equal, but i will be needing a pad thai fix asap when we land in New Zealand.
Geoff won the McMurdo Half Marathon a few weeks ago. As ususal I am not very prompt at posting the pics. Enjoy! Here is a picture of him crossing the finish line. I volunteered to help out with the timing for the race. It was a beautful Antarctic day. Perfect weather.
I was very fortunate to go on a Helicopter trip to Mt Erebus this past week. Mt Erebus is the southernmost active volcano on Earth. With a summit elevation of 12,447 ft (3,794meters).
After being delayed for 3 days because of weather we were lucky to have a semi-clear day.
It was a working trip. Which for me was more manual labor than I have done in a while, but it sure was fun. We were there to shovel out some of the seismic instruments so that the scientist could retrive their data.
These are some pictures of me hard at work. I am the guy in the black. Okay so it is not really me but my stunt double. It is really my friend Tony who does the same job as me on the opposite shift.
What they are doing here is taking a reel of cable off of a Delta. The reel weighs about 15,000lbs which is more weight than one of our loaders could handle when it is up as high as the Delta bed. So what we do is get one loader on each side. (1st picture)
Next we lift the reel up a couple feet and drive the delta out from underneath it. (second picture)
Then we coordinate both loader drivers to lower it to the ground at the same time. (third picture) My job in all of this is to coordinate everyone to work together and communicate with all of them with hand signals. I know. My job is tough and very stressful.
This reel will next be put on a pallet that is on a sled and restrained with chains so it can fly in a plane. Then it will be pushed off the sled onto a plane and make its way to the South Pole Station. Once it arrives at its destination it will be down loaded onto another sled. The cable is finally delivered to the Ice Cube science project. So by the time this cable gets to it's final destination it has cost all of you taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars, not much of that money is reflected in my paycheck. We send about 10 of these reels to the South Pole each year.
Here is a brief description of the Ice Cube Project:
The IceCube Neutrino Detector is a neutrino telescope currently under construction at the South Pole. Like its predecessor, the Antarctic Muon And Neutrino Detector Array (AMANDA), IceCube is being constructed in deep Antarctic ice by deploying thousands of spherical optical sensors (photomultiplier tubes, or PMTs) at depths between 1,450 and 2,450 meters. The sensors are deployed on "strings" of sixty modules each, into holes in the ice melted using a hot water drill. The main goal of the experiment is to detect neutrinos in the high energy range, spanning from 1011eV to about 1021 eV. The neutrinos are not detected themselves. Instead, the rare instance of a collision between a neutrino and an atom within the ice is used to deduce the kinematical parameters of the incoming neutrino. Current estimates predict the detection of about one thousand such events per day in the fully constructed IceCube detector. Due to the high density of the ice, almost all detected products of the initial collision will be muons. Therefore the experiment is most sensitive to the flux of muon neutrinos through its volume. Most of these neutrinos will come from "cascades" in Earth's atmosphere caused by cosmic rays, but some unknown fraction may come from astronomical sources. To distinguish these two sources statistically, the direction and angle of the incoming neutrino is estimated from its collision by-products. One can generally say, that a neutrino coming from above "down" into the detector is most likely stemming from an atmospheric shower, and a neutrino traveling "up" from below is more likely from a different source. The sources of those neutrinos coming "up" from below could be black holes, gamma ray bursters, or supernova remnants. The data that IceCube will collect will also contribute to our understanding of cosmic rays, supersymmetry, weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPS), and other aspects of nuclear and particle physics. here is the ice cube web site.