Ice and Medicine at the end of the earth

Arrival In Antarctica: 2014, my first bipolar year

Arriving in Antarctica is always amazing. This is my third time touching down on the continent, and I gladly take the same photos every time. Just like I never tire of looking out at Mt. Rainier, looking up at Mt. Erebus, the southernmost active volcano in the world, is always a treat.
aia_1I arrived on New Year’s Eve, making 2014 the first year that I had been both above the arctic circle and below the Antarctic circle in the same year. One more day of a flight delay and I wouldn’t have made it.

Landing in Antarctica feels other-worldly as you are dressed in ECW and step off the plane onto snow. But the beautiful weather – just below freezing with little wind – made if feel like an après-ski afternoon on a Spring ski day.

Many of the vehicles don’t look that different.aia_2

But some remind you of the snow-dominated environment you will be working in.


To my surprise, we loaded onto Ivan the Terra Bus, which I thought had been retired.  This is Ivan when Jessie was here.

Ice Transportation

And we bounced our way for 45 minutes to McMurdo station on a combination of snow and dirt roads. It was good to be back in McMurdo, but I hoped my stay would be short and I would get to South Pole the next day.

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