Today a place was set up on the ice next to the ship for cargo operations: containers were lowered by crane from the ship, helpers unloaded the containers, and helicopters landed to be filled and fly off to Mawson Station. I have helped in a small way by spotting helicopters on their way, signing people on and off the ice, and watching for cracks next to the ship – not very essential occupations, but an excuse to get down close to the ice and watch the goings on. It’s still very cold (around -14) so am trialling all my winter gear. At this temperature I will definitely not be playing outside unless the sun is shining directly onto my fingertips! The beautiful mountains surrounding Mawson are clearly visible from here – dark with large patches of snow and ice, making some look a bit like orcas to me. Lots of people are already ashore, some will return tonight having had their stint on land. Tonight after helicopter ops finish, we will all be allowed down on the ice to play for a couple hours before dark: very exciting. I will be sending off my equipment (including laptop) tomorrow, so blogs will miss a day, and the harp will fly with me in the helicopter the next day.
February 26, 2011