I Made it to New Zealand!

After washing 20 hours of travel grime off, I now feel human again. Boy, it's been a long plane ride! I departed San Fransisco at 11 PM on Thursday,past the International date line, skipping Friday and jumped right into Saturday at 1:30 in the afternoon. I've made it to Christchurch, NewZealand!


Street Art in Christchurch
Street Art- Corgi's!- in Christchurch

Burgers in Downtown Christchurch
Mrs. Hardoy eating a burger in Downtown Christchurch

I was off to explore the town tonight with a fellow PolarTREC teacher., Amy Osborne. I wasn't able to see much flying in, as it is really cloudy here. It's 65 degrees and a little rainy looking. I did notice that they drive on the left hand side of the road here. I had forgotten that. Crazy. Good thing I have no plans to drive anywhere.
High Street, Christchurch Downtown
High Street, Downtown Christchurch

Street Art in Christchurch
Amazing Alice in Wonderland Street Art in Christchurch

On the way here, I already met some interesting people that are headed to Antarctica. Only one was a grad student that will be studying penguins. The others all work in support roles. There were a few equipment operators, mechanics, and a lady that works on supplying electricity to McMurdo Station. Apparently, it is primarily furnished with big generators, but there are also wind turbines. I look forward to learning more about the logistics of what it take to support the science in McMurdo.

Which Way?

Draining drains…
Which Way Does Water Whirlpool in the Southern Hemisphere?

I've tried to start my first science experiment. One of my student's requested that I test which way water drains from a sink- clockwise, or counterclockwise??? It wasn't very successful, as the plug was getting in the way. I tried the toilet too, but that's just gross taking pictures of a toilet flushing. And, it really didn't work right either. I'll have to try again once I'm in Antarctica. Anyone want to conduct the experiment in California to compare my results to?

Tomorrow, I have a full day slated. I'll start by going through a few hours of cold weather survival training. Then my computer has to be screened for viruses in order to hook up to the government internet in McMurdo. Last, but not least, I will be issued my extreme cold weather gear. ...Pictures to follow!

Interesting facts about Christchurch, NewZealand

Street Art in Christchirch
Street Art- Giant Spray Can- in Christchurch

Christchurch is a city of about 390,000 people. It is on the very southern tip of NewZealand's Southern Island. It is an important agricultural area, with crops of wheat and barley and grasses for seeds. The dairy industry is growing, and of course, New Zealand is famous for their sheep. It is the stepping off point for heading to Antarctica - particularly for scientists going to the Ross Sea and McMurdo Station. The United States Antarctic Program has a large facility here. They run the Clothing Distribution Center where I will get my extreme cold weather clothes tomorrow!

Until tommorrow,

Stay Cool!


Donald L Metzler

Just to let you know, I am watching and listening and enjoying your adventures. Keep moving forward!

Mike Penn

Denise, My students and I are following your expedition. We look forward to reading your journals! (be ready for some questions from my students!) I wasn't able to get it to work in my sink when I was there either, I feel your pain!

Denise Hardoy

Thanks Mike! I can't wait for their questions. It's been great so far. I'm benefiting from the advise from all of the PolarTREC alum. Much appreciated!

Pam Hernandez

Love, love, love seeing this first part of your journey and hearing about the first science experiment attempt. A little insight into ChristChurch and how things work on the backend are so cool to learn about. Enjoy!

Kathleen Dynes

Sounds like things are off to a good start. Love the pics. All the street art is great. Is it a big thing there? Can't wait to see you all bundled up in your arctic gear. :-)


How do you know that there are 390,000 people in Christchurch?

Sue Morrow

Hi Denise, my class and I are following your adventure. I'm so excited for you. We will be doing Polar science this quarter. Hopefully you will be able to come and visit us when you get back.