Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Stuck in a Rut

One of four new 15 Passenger V10 4x4 Ford vans in McMurdo.

Another view of a new van out at the airfield.

The move from the Ice Runway to Pegasus ( "Plegasus Pergatory" ) happened this week.  This is the move from the ice runway about a mile from McMurdo to the airfield on the permanent ice shelf 14 miles from town.  The road is new and very soft, easily gutted and rough, bouncy and bad.  Fortunately,  it's a rite of passage as almost everyone gets stuck and Fleet Operations (Fleet Ops) has the equipment to pull us out.

I'm stuck in a rut!  The first day of Pegasus airfield shuttle runs and the road was not ready for traffic.  It had no time to set up and harden, so the road was all soft snow and very rough, "It's a Rodeo" as fellow shuttle driver Elisha desribed it.

I moved over to the really soft side to let another vehicle pass and immediately sunk into the soft snow.  Fleet Ops are the guys with the big equipment and I was out and on my way in minutes.

The next day I got stuck going to the Pegasus Airfield Tower.  This road hasn't been used much, so it's very soft.  Again, a call on the radio and Fleet Ops was there in minutes to pull me out.
Buried in snow.  We carry shovels in every vehicle, but it's faster and easier on the roads to have Fleet Ops pull you out.  They have big Cat tractors called Challengers with rubber tracks that work great.

Really stuck in a rut and calling for help on the radio.

Yep, it's buried...

Stuck in a rut, again.

New trailers for hauling ECW's and gear.

Nice van, Not stuck.

Even big orange Delta's get stuck

Delta Dawn stuck in the snow.  It may not look like stuck, but I just spun my tires and sank lower and lower...  I tried crabbing but wasn't getting out of the hole, so I called Fleet Ops for a tow.

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