Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I made it to McMurdo, October 17, 2011

I made it to McMurdo (McM) on Monday, October 17th about noon.  Yeah!  AWESOME!
Dave & Kelly met me at the ice runway to welcome me to my 7th and final continent!

That's me in my ECW gear and the Airbus I rode from NZ. 

What an awesome place!  It was really cold yesterday, about 30 below, but today was a more pleasant 6 below.  It’s COLD!  (well, duh!)  Anything warmer than 45 below is considered “Go” condition, meaning business as usual.  This place is so beautiful, amazing blue skies, every color of white and blue you can imagine – and lots of both!

I got to ride on the chartered commercial Airbus 319 with flight attendants and windows, amazing views of the sea ice and mountains.  The Air Force C-17 brought freight and other stuff.  I hope to fly out on the C-17 in February, an experience I was looking forward to.  In the meantime, I will be working around the NY Air National Guard (NYANG) LC-130's

Dave, Kelly and I work in the same building, so it’s great to see them every day.  In fact, Kelly gave us a presentation and test this afternoon (yes I passed).  My head is full, total information overload after 10 hours of training today.  I got to drive the Airporter van to Scott Base (Kiwi) and to the ice airstrip for training.  I get to work with so very interesting people, several from Alaska and other interesting places.

This is so very cool, I love hanging out with these people that have the same passion for travel and adventure I do!  This is going to be a fun job!  Not sure what the heck I was so worried about….

Unfortunately, the food is really good, plentiful and tasty.  The old timers say it’s the best it’s ever been!  Bad for my waistline, but I’m going to try to be really good.  I went to the gym at 5am but all the machines were full.  We have a very small gym for a community of 1,200 very active outdoorsy athletic types. 

The roommate situation isn’t the best, but it will work out.  I got my last choice of dorms and have 3 roommates ( 4 total) in a room that should have just 2 of us.

The training has been top notch, from the Orientation in Denver, to the ECW issue in ChCh (Christchurch) and now here on the ice.  I run into the great people from my orientation classes all the time, it’s been really social and fun.

Inside the Airbus, business class and comfy.


Coming in for a landing at McMurdo's Ice Runway.
Mt Erebus on the horizon.

IR, Ice Runway.

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