Thursday, 16 December 2010

Off to Rothera

The Dash 7
The flight to Rothera from Punta Arenas would take about 5 hours. Although the plane can carry a fair amount of passengers there was only to be the six of us along with the two pilots. The rest of the space had been taken up by supplies...mainly fresh food....that the base needed. Due to some admin error a lot of the food on the base had been mistakenly thought to be past its 'use by' date and had been thrown away leading to accute shortages in the baked bean department and elsewhere.
Securing the supplies in the Dash


Wannabe Co Co Co Pilot

 The first views of Rothera were amazingly beautiful.  Situated on Adelaide Island, it lies approximately 1860km south of the Falkland Islands and 1630km south east of Punta Arenas in Chile. The island is 140km long and heavily glaciated with mountains of up to 2565m height. The station is built on a promontory of rock at the southern extremity of the Wormald Ice Piedmont.

Flying Into Rothera

 Whilst I really enjoyed the views coming into the base I didn't enjoy the 5 attempts at landing before the wheels finally hit terra firma. Each time we tried to land a gust of wind would force the plane upwards again. Actually...I was terrified!

Landing at Rothera

 Anyway WE MADE IT! And I won't have to go throught that again for a while. After unloading the plane I was shown my room and had a quick tour around. First impressions are of a ski chalet!...very different to the Halley base which felt much more exposed and 'on the edge'.

My Room
.............................And what a treat. My room has a shower. I think that was the worst thing at Halley...having to get dressed and wander down the corridor to go and have a shower! Now all I need to make life complete is a kettle, some powdered milk and a few tea bags. Plasma TV would be nice but I guess that's being a little greedy.

Anyway I shall enjoy this as tomorrow I have to go through field training which will involve spending the next night in a tent.

Of more later........

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