The 2008 Antarctic drilling season is over for Dr. Marchant's team. The team spent a total of 35 days in Mullins and Beacon Valley camps, and retrieved 72 m of core from 5 drilling sites.
Dave Marchant has taken time from a busy schedule to provide a video recap of the science. Before we met, Dave Marchant was described to me as a "hardcore" geologist. After meeting and spending time with him in the field, I would describe Dave as an "old school" geologist. Old school geologists are all hardcore in the sense that they are willing to camp and conduct field work in any type of weather or terrain to get the job done. Dave doesn't shy away or cut corners when he encounters complex field problems and he puts in the same long hours and hard work that he expects of others. From the academic standpoint, Dave's papers are at the top of his field, highly cited and very well respected. But Dave also enjoys teaching, even at the introductory class level. He taught me by example that humor and taking time for a simple gesture such as writing a personal note can make a difference when you are working with new people in stressful situations. This is something I will definitely take back to the classroom. Dave made this video during this field season especially for my PolarTREC journal. Notice the sound of the wind on his video! You can download the video by selecting the link at the end of this journal.
So how did I hold up this season? I spent a total of 16 days at the Beacon Valley camp and went a maximum of 7 days without a shower. I survived frostnip, pee bottles, the box, and I barely survived the wind. I also took the first of many helicopter rides in Antarctica over some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. The picture below was taken during my photo shoot with Sean, and is my favorite. The team thought it was a typical tourist "Here's Jackie in Antarctica" photo and that is exactly what I like about it. When I look at that photo it says to me not only was I in Antarctica, but I was in one of the least visited places in Antarctica. I hope that I will also remember how I felt the first time I saw Taylor and Mullins Glaciers whenever I see this photo. It is estimated that only 50 people have worked in Beacon Valley. Dave Marchant has taken 25 people to Beacon Valley over a 20-year period and I thank him for including me in this select group. I can now say that I am one of the people who have been to the "ice", and to the oldest glacier in the world.
I will post a final journal providing information on jobs in Antarctica and maps showing the flight paths for the photos included in the journal.