Thursday, November 02, 2006

Dry Valleys ASMA


Today I attended a class that teaches one how
to interact with the environment in the Dry
Valleys Antarctic Specially Managed Area (ASMA).
The McMurdo Dry Valleys are the largest relatively
ice-free region in Antarctica. Almost thirty
percent of the surface is free of snow and ice.
It is used to study ecologcial sustanibility in a
little-changing climate. The fact that I was
able to attend the class doesn't mean I'm going
to the Dry Valleys anytime soon. However those
that have been on the Ice 15 months or more can
take the class just in case there is a slim chance
a trip opens up. And I'm talking VERY slim.


Regardless, it was an interesting presentation.
All items brought in, must be taken out. This
even includes bodily waste. Special sections are
designated off limits and even the areas that are
accessible must be handled with extreme care.
This is about as pristine an area that you can
find on the planet. It's refreshing that people
are trying to keep it that way.

2 comments:

Jude said...

So since you had that other chance to visit the Dry Valleys, does this meaning you could go without the training, or that you had the training before? Just wondering. I love your blog. I've always been interested in Antarctica, and I live in Rifle, so no matter what you're writing about, I find it fascinating.

Tom said...

Thanks Jude for reading. I would have been able to go before because they were less strict about the rules then. Now they're much more ecologically conscious about almost everything. Good news, but makes it harder to just get up and go.