Again, it has been too long since I last posted. We have continued to be very busy in the field and laboratory, trying to collect as much data before the end of our time here. Speaking of that…today was our last day in the field…so all samples have been collected for this field season.
I wanted to highlight a couple things that we have done since I last posted. One of the exciting finds was a "river" of water coming out from the bottom of the Marr Glacier in the backyard behind Palmer Station. It was flowing at a fairly high rate for several days. The water was literally pouring out of the glacier and cascading down the rock face, cascading into the surface water. We sampled the water directly from the glacier and as it fell into the surface water. This is essentially one of the end-members we are trying to quantify entering the coastal ocean in this area. We were really excited to have the opportunity to get samples directly from this freshwater source as it entered the ocean.
As we were sampling, the glacier several hundred meters from us began to calve in several places. I was able to catch a few of the events on camera, although a video would have been better. You can see a large chunk of ice falling from the glacier in the center of the picture. Incredible to watch these events occur…the amount of ice entering the ocean through these calving events is pretty impressive. We have watched these events occur throughout our stay here. The most impressive event occurred during our last time-series event…an extremely large calving created a 6-foot wave that hit the shoreline that we were working on. Amazing, but no pictures…we were too busy trying to protect our equipment!
Finally, I was lucky enough top be a part of a live broadcast into several classrooms in Northeast NC. David Sybert and John McCord (both at UNC CSI) arranged the broadcast and did a great job putting everything together. You can watch it here…
It was a really cool experience and I hope you have some time to check it out.
We start cleaning up all our gear and packing everything away tomorrow. We will board the RV Gould on Sunday and start our trek home. I am looking forward to getting back home…excited by all that I have experienced since arriving in Antarctica!