The start of this lovely day began similarly to all the others, a very cold walk to the Big House, a self-served breakfast, and a meeting with all the workers here at Summit. After the meeting, where we all talk about what we’re doing today, we went to the snow pit to take some more samples. We met with Dr. David Noone and Max Berkelhammer (of the University of Colorado - Boulder) and slowly made our way to the snow pit.
Once we got there about half the group went into the snow pit and the other half stayed outside to make the wall thinner, allowing more light to pass through, which makes the beautiful colors of the wall more vibrant. To do this we had to very carefully shave snow and ice off the wall with the shovels we brought out. While the group was shaving ice, the other half of the group was continuing to take samples of the snow and ice layers.
While we were at the snow pit, Samantha and Thomas decided to dig a hole in the snow, for no other reason than the fact that they could. After about 45 minutes to an hour later, the hole was finished! The Hole was only made for two people to go into; however we thought it would be a good idea for everybody to get in. After about five minutes of people laughing/screaming because they were being crushed, we managed to fit all eight of us into the pit.
At about 11:30 when we were done playing at the snow pit, we went to go meet Jeff “Survey 1” Scanniello. When we met up with Survey 1, he told us all about his job: surveying the Summit camp’s buildings and runway and recording the coordinates of them on the ever moving ice sheet on which the camp is built. He doesn’t only survey here in Greenland, he travels all over the world surveying wherever he is needed, which is mostly in Antarctica. He told us all about what he does, how he does it, and also about his very fancy, very expensive GPS that makes a surveying job so much easier.
With our knew knowledge about GPS, it was time to put that information to good use, it was time for a scavenger hunt! The IGERT people had put together a scavenger hunt for us JSEPers; the scavenger hunt had us search all through the camp and look for clues that would eventually lead us all the way back to where we started. When we all arrived back at the starting point of the hunt, we had to work together to figure out the last clue. This last clue led us outside the Science Operations Building (SOB), where we dug through snow to find the bag that held our prize. In the bag that had our prize in it, we each got a KANGER sticker, a “Do not freeze” sticker that had a penguin on it, a Dartmouth College sticker and pen, and last but certainly not the least, a pack of M&Ms.
After a refreshing break to warm-up at the Big House, we met up with Summit Science Technicians, David Benson and Chantel Stapleton. With them we went to the Temporary Atmospheric Weather Observatory (TAWO) building to take a small look into the work of David and Chantel. We got into clean suits that keep our dirty clothes off the clean snow. In the suits we collected some snow in some little bottles, which we got to keep! After that we separated into smaller groups and got to take a look in the tiny TAWO building at the many sensors, equipment, and computers that test the air and snow that is untouched by humans.
After that we all gathered back in the Big House to talk and play games, and of course, tie knots. After that we all ate an amazing dinner that was only made better by seeing Santa! Santa (a.k.a. Skipper) showed up with his sleigh and stopped for a picture. But after hundreds of pictures from every single camera we could find, he had to fly away and get ready for the year ahead of him.
After finishing dinner and saying goodbye to Santa for a couple months, some of us went to go cut shapes in the wonderful wall of ice. The cut out shape we made was kind of humanish, it could have had a more human like head, and maybe not an unusually long and skinny neck. Nevertheless, we cut out the shape of a human, carved some faces, and made designs that weren’t too bad, you could kind of sort of tell what they were…
We finished our last day in this lovely land o’ ice by playing cards and listening to music. Tomorrow we pack our small amount of clothes and head back to Kanger.