Saturday, November 14, 2009


This morning, on the way to work, I found
justification for having my snow boots here.
Normally, summertime at McMurdo is a land of
light snow, then mud, and finally dust. With
the last few days of inclement weather, however,
my boots came in handy. Many inches, helped
along by very strong winds, piled the snow up
into a snowstorm most midwesterners would be
proud of.

There was a sense of serenity this morning, as
very few people are out and about at 5:30 AM and
the few people wandering around in the snow gave
kind of a surreal feel to the town.

Being a many time winterover, I've seen storms
like this often...just not in mid-November.
With this storm, like others, the deficiencies
of the infrastructure here become obvious.
For example, this view of the entrance to
Building 155 shows that the snow has nowhere
to go, so it dumps at the stairs leading into
the building. Other large drifts formed in
various places, including a nearly waist
high drift on the goat path leading to the
building I work in. McMurdo is a fickle
mistress though, and knowing the history of
the changes in weather, most of this snow will
be melted and gone in several days, replaced
by boggy thoroughfares of mud. I need to
remember to enjoy the "cleanliness" of the
snow while it lasts.

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