I can hear the waves, 1000 meters below

Thursday, March 18-Ulla-overcasted.

We  have been announced a storm for the weekend. There remains only 2 or 3 days to make up on Sorbreen. Our objectives are

  • to download data from the automatic weather station
  • to install and make new measurements of stakes, snow pits and longitudinal profile radar high and low-frequency.

Unfortunately Anna is ill and can’t accompany us on the glacier.

John and Johan install a new anemometer and retrieves give the AWS meanwhile I sample snow 100 m away from any traces left by the scooter. Luckily for the first time since the mission began, the weather is perfectly calm.

Then we reach the central part of the glacier by the only access without crevasses. The boys spent the afternoon installing a second AWS letting me digging and operate a new sampling of snow 100m away.  I dig up to 2m, breaking the thick layers of ice with an ax. According to estimates by John who has put some stakes in this area, the thickness of snow and firn layering ice would be at least 3 meters. Unfortunately I have no time to dig up this depth today.

Everything is so quiet now that even from the bottom of my pit of snow I can hear the surf waves, 1000 meters below.

We finish our respective tasks simultaneously, it is time to descend to Ulla. The box of samples of the day is buried at the bottom of the first pit and marked by two beacons. We do not have a freezer at the cabin.

The waves are huge today and tide helping, they have eroded the trail traced by the scooter this morning. To avoid getting bogged down in the black sand this time, we must guide the machine on the flank of the drift that extends the moraine and ends in the sea. The slope is steep and to prevent the scooter from tipping and begin to flip over that would lead us directly to the water, we strive to make the weight against, placing ourselves balanced on the opposite side of the machine, such as marine rappel on their sailboat to restore horizontal. Johan maneuvering the handlebars with one handle. The realization of this cascade gain me some time to find myself ejected from the scooter. Fall is without consequences, because we all wear helmets.

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One Response to “I can hear the waves, 1000 meters below”

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