The Job Site

McMurdo Station is not actually on the Antarctic Continent but at the tip of Hut Point, Ross Island.  Our drill camp is located  on the sea ice Southwest of Mcmurdo on the road to the ice runways.  The specific location that we are at is called SPOTSA (South Pole Traverse Staging Area).  We will be building there for the next couple months until we move camp to Windless Bight for testing and eventually traversing to Lake Willan later in the season.

Here is a view from the edge of drill camp looking back towards McMurdo.  The ice road is out of sight to the left of the view.

Here is another shot of drill camp toward Ross Island.  The building with blue sides is our mechanical building, aka the MEC.  Inside we have some workspace, an arc welder, mini lathe and a milling machine.  I cant imagine a better place to machine parts than this.  This is the best office I’ve ever had.

Looking Southwest to the ice runway from drill camp.  There is a C 17 in the background that landed on a routine cargo run.

On a clear day the mountains are visible across the sound.


6 responses to “The Job Site

  • Robert lemery

    How big are the mountains?

  • Cindy Lemery

    What mountains are these? Where are the penguines?
    I think you have the perfect office–does it have a desk?
    Stay warm,

  • blp0206

    I remember distances being super deceptive. It looks like you’re fairly close to station but how long does it take you to get out there?

    • jlemery

      Only about a 1/2 mile. Distances and size are very deceptive. The trans antarctica range appears to be just a stones throw away from the sea ice in front of MucMurdo but they are actually 30 miles away. There just isnt anything to reference for size so small things can seem huge and huge things can seem small. Theres also an effect called Fata Morgana which is an optical illusion that distorts objects as light is distorted as it passes through layers of air at different temperatures. I have noticed that the Trans Antarctic range sometimes appears to have huge cliffs at the bases of them but its just a mirage. Weird stuff.

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