The flying conditions are nothing but perfect, so the plane is expected to leave from Troll at 19.00 this evening. Then I have one day in Cape Town to heat up. After that I’ll have a small vacation in Stavanger, before returning to Trondheim on Friday, just in time for cake-Friday with the other geotechnics-students. So I’ll have a lot of flight time this week!
The last preparations were finished on Friday. I have collected ice samples from the runway to study when I get back home. The plan is to keep them frozen in a small container with cooling elements during the long transportation. We have been in contact with the hotel in Cape Town, and I will be allowed to keep them in their freezer during my stay. But even though everything is well organized, I am still wondering if I will actually manage to keep them cold enough all the way to NTNU… I have told my mother to make room in her freezer too!
On the picture to the right you can see the print made when the piston is pushed into the ice. We want to study the crushed ice just behind the indentation in detail, because this contains a lot of information about the fraction mechanism. I have been struggling to collect this piece of ice because the ice were very fragile in this area.
Yesterday evening, the weather changed from drifting snow to wind still and sunny in just a few hours. Since I was done with my work, I convinced Einar to go skiing with me. He had the day off. Einar has been at Troll several times, and has a lot of good stories to tell from the station and from other expeditions in Antarctica. He over-wintered at the station in 2010, when he indeed was the team leader. Because of the snowfall the last few days (which is rare in Antarctica), the skiing conditions at the airport-road where not too bad.