November 21, 2008 The "Bot House" gets a blanket!
There were a few moments today when I suspected if we just held on tight to the tent lines that the wind would allow the entire team to parasail over to Lake Bonney! Even though it was a relatively mild wind - at least by Antarctic standards, it was quite a challenge to get the tent covers (yep - that's plural... there are three cover layers!) put on the tent!
We started the day by assembling the frame for the tent cover, or "blanket" as it's called. We called the frame the ribcage because it looked quite a bit like a rack of ribs! The first several "ribs" were quite difficult to connect, but once we had a system going, we got into a groove.
Shilpa gathers some "ribs" (tent frame sections!) to the work area for assembly!
The first "rib" goes up!
One supporting arch in place; or is that the St. Louis Arch?
Looking down the "belly of the beast"! Can you see why we call it a "ribcage?"
Kristoff helps to secure the center connector for the frame.
Moving along! We're not quite in a groove yet, but we're getting there!
Our "persuassion stick" for when the pieces didn't want to join - we hit it with some "love"!
Now that's a tent frame!
Peter stands in front of the "Bot House" skeleton for a size comparison!
Then came the covers. Wow - that was a challenge! The wind filled those massive covers like a sail! Not only were we pulling very heavy tarps over the enormous frame of the "Bot House", we had to hold the covers back from the wind! It was a good thing we had a good strong crew! It took everyone's effort to get it done - But we did it!
Before the tent covers could go on, we needed to secure the end wall frame.
Maciej secures an end wall frame to the ribcage.
First the end walls go up - NO easy task!
Then the inner tent liner.
Then the insulation sheets! That will help keep the tent warm - we like warmth!
Bob helps to pull an insulating layer over the top of the tent.
After a massive group wrestle by the entire team to get the final cover - or "blanket" over the tent, Bart helps to secure the lines to a massive concrete block. There were 8 concrete blocks (basically mooring blocks for all you folks near boat yards!) that we secured the tent structure to. It's hard to imagine, but if a good enough wind kicks up - which is entirely possible in Antarctica, the entire structure could be blown away. It's happened before!
Once again Team ENDURANCE rocks the day!
ENDURANCE now has a home: The Bot House!
You can also check out my journals and pictures from previous seasons at: http://www.ryejrhigh.org/ellwood