Saturday, February 13, 2010

Winter begins

With the departure of the last Hercules for the season, at some unreasonably early hour this Valentine's morning, South Pole Station is closed for the 2010 winter. Sometime in about 9 months we'll see other people show back up here, but until then it's just the 47 of us. I didn't stay up to see the plane off, but I'm sure plenty of other folks did. I haven't seen or heard anybody else awake thus far this morning, so I'm sure most folks are sleeping in (and rightly so). The push to the end of the summer is always taxing, and with these very late flights it put a bit of an extra toll on the staff here. Regardless, it is good to be here and have the transition away from summer complete. We have a lot of station-closing activities to do (winterizing summer camp, pulling skiway markers, setting up flag lines, doing all the summer folks' bedding laundry, etc.) in addition to our normal jobs' duties, which will take a bit of time to accomplish. Cheers to another winter at the bottom of the world!

"All is silent in the halls of the dead." Eddie heard himself in a falling, fainting voice. "All is forgotten in the stone halls of the dead. Behold the stairways which stand in darkness; behold the rooms of ruin. These are the halls of the dead where spiders spin and the great circuits fall quiet, one by one."
~Stephen King

Don't worry about the quote. This place just gets a whole lot quieter and emptier really quickly, once winter hits. With about 25% fewer crew members than winter "08, it just seems like that will be even more the case. Besides, we don't even have a fruit fly, let alone any spiders.


idan said...

Hey Ethan,
I've been following your blog, as well as a few others wintering at Pole and McM.
Hope you have a good winter and keep writing!

Neal said...

Enjoy your second winter. Knowing what to expect makes a huge difference, especially when something unexpected happens.

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